In the very recent past, the number of people working from home has mushroomed as stay-at-home mandates have closed offices and businesses across the country and around the world. People who are not set up to work at home are suddenly having to navigate work and home together, with the additional elements of children out of school or daycare and, possibly, a working spouse in residence all day as well. If you’re not accustomed to working at home or don’t have a home office, you may find it extremely challenging.
A custom home office can mean the difference between successfully working from home and feeling overwhelmed
- Not enough space to work comfortably or efficiently
- Technology issues with connectivity, bandwidth, and equipment
- Distractions galore, including the neighbor’s barking dog and your kids
- Lacking work discipline without the structure of the office routine
- Time out for homeschooling the kids and integrating work and family priorities
Tailored Living® can evaluate your space and your needs and create a custom home office that lets you live at peace with the family while getting your work done.
Claim your space
First and foremost, you need appropriate space to work. You can’t work efficiently with a “mobile office” that one day has you at the kitchen table and the next day in the bedroom. Since working from home may be the new normal for a time, it’s important to create A credible workspace. It may require some shifting things around if you don’t have a home office, but it’s worth the effort. Just remember, it’s a temporary situation so you’re not having to rethink your overall home space use forever. By readjusting the guest bedroom, sewing/craft room, or attic to set up a functioning office, you’ll eliminate the stress of finding a place to land every day. You may even discover that office space is something you’ve been wanting for a long time and decide that now is a good time for a permanent, custom home office solution from Tailored Living.
Repurpose existing space to serve as your home office so working from home is more efficient and easier on everybody
- Consider space needs for computers, monitors, scanner, printer, and whatever else you require to do your job.
- Make sure you have the electrical and internet access to power all your equipment.
- Remove “other-use” items from the space for the time being so your office is not cluttered.
- Set the work hours when your office is off-limits to the rest of the family or create a schedule for sharing the space with everyone who will be using it as well.
Organize your office space for maximum efficiency
You’ll want to bring everything you need for work into this new space, including incidentals like copy paper, pens, highlighters, tape, and stapler. This eliminates having to search for supplies in the house and getting distracted in the process. As near as possible, duplicate the workflow you’re used to with drawers and desktop organization tools, however you prefer to work. (This may be the perfect opportunity to get that standup workstation you’ve been wanting.) If office space is limited, rolling files or stacking cubes can provide filing and storage space for whatever you need.
Supplement existing storage or create storage where there isn’t any with portable options to keep your office space organized
- Resist the urge to just pile papers, files, and books; purposeful storage will eliminate clutter and keep essentials organized and easy to find.
- If a shared space, each user should have individual storage space for their work or school necessities.
- Creating the feel of a real office will make it easier to settle down and stay focused when it’s time to work.
Create the right atmosphere for work
It does take discipline to work from home and your surroundings can either help or hinder your ability to work. If you’re the type of person who responds to every interruption or temptation that comes along (email or Facebook alerts, dog barking, ice cream truck serenade, ad pop ups) you’ll have to learn some new skills. With a house full of people, this can be especially difficult and, depending on the ages of your children, there may be interruptions and distractions you can’t ignore. But do take steps to create a work environment that lets you be both productive and available.
- Set a schedule that accommodates other responsibilities that will claim time in your day, such as homeschooling, childcare, etc.
- A “To-Do” list for each day will help you focus on priority projects and checking off completed items is more stimulating than caffeine.
- Incorporate breaks into your workday to check Facebook or answer personal email rather than responding to every alert.
- Have comfortable surroundings, including sufficient lighting, temperature control, and an ergonomically friendly chair so physical fatigue or discomfort isn’t contributing to restlessness.
- Wear headphones or play music or white noise (like rain or ocean waves) to block out distracting sounds and if you have a door, close it.
- Take a lunch break to refresh and refuel. Walk the dog, play with your kids, or start that load of laundry that keeps calling your name.
A custom home office designed just for you
The right workspace can make all the difference to working at home successfully, and Tailored Living can work with you to maximize dual-purpose rooms to include an office or design a new home office to perfectly suit your needs. By incorporating desktop workspace, storage requirements, aesthetic design, and comfort, you’ll have a custom home office design like no other. Custom office design gives you options like colors and finishes, six different door and drawer front styles, decorative molding, and hardware choices so you can match your home’s existing décor. Additional customizable options include glass-inset doors, integrated LED lighting, adjustable shelves, pull-out bins, computer trays, drawer dividers, and more, to make your space exactly what you need it to be.
Your office, your way is easy with custom home office design that is tailor-made to the way you work
- Utilizing vertical space ensures plenty of storage and organizational space for getting things up and off the desktop to eliminate feeling crowded.
- Cabinets, drawers, and shelves can accommodate your personal work style with everything behind closed doors or with open shelves and bins for a more casual atmosphere.
- Optional locking cabinets and drawers provide security for important documents and protection for expensive equipment.
- You can have your home office without sacrificing the guest room; install a Murphy Bed, hidden in a cabinet until needed.
- Incorporate a media cabinet for a TV and gaming equipment for daytime sanity breaks, or to transform the office into additional entertainment space for the family.
Enjoy this season of working from home
Once you get your work groove on, you’ll really enjoy the perks of working at home. More time with family (including the four-legged kind), no commuting, casual Friday can be every day, and you’ll find a power nap can be invigorating! Tailored Living is ready to help restore peace and calm for this new normal of working from home. With in-home and virtual* consultations, we can honor appropriate social distancing and safety mandates and still evaluate your needs, design your office in 3D display so you can see how it will look, and schedule an installation for when the time is right. Call 866-641-8958 (US) or 866-973-8221 (CAN) today or go online to www.tailoredliving.com to find a designer near you and schedule a free, in-home or virtual consultation.
*Virtual consultations are not available at all locations.