Despite all the grumbling we’ve been hearing lately, there’s no denying that this virtual life has given us so much. The uncountable possibilities for traveling the world and connecting with foreign cultures are only a few of them. We can now visit a Snoop Dog concert without ever leaving the bed and learn everything about supernovas with only a click or two.
Still, an opportunity to leave our cubicles behind and design our own creative shrines to brainstorm, work and earn money from is probably the most exciting of them all. If offered a chance to work in a comfortable setting in your home, don’t be silly enough to let it pass – building your own office might be just the thing you’ve needed to achieve that supreme level of productivity. Here are some ideas.
Set the Ambience
Face that challenging new business project with some inspiring music in your ears! When outlining a set-up for your home office, always start with a mood – however enchanted you are with color palettes and furnishing fabrics, it’s actually sound, light and heat that set the ground for the overall home-work experience, and you’ll need to settle them first.
Soothe your brainwaves. Estimate a perfect space for your stereo to emit those brain-boosting waves, and keep your favorite ambient tunes on moderate volume.
Keep your cool. A properly calculated temperature can increase efficiency – studies have found that boosting the temperature to 25ºC actually reduces energy consumption and, consequently, eliminates a significant number of errors.
Light up a candle. It’s a common misconception that bright lights spur productivity, when in fact scientists recommend a little darkness for your working sessions. When there is no natural light, try to keep your illumination somewhat dim, while still keeping enough light so that you don’t strain your eyes.
Brighten the Mood
It’s well known that the right choice of color can make your creative juices flow like nectar, which is why a vibrant color palette is another advantage of a home-based office. When playing around with silky cushions and fuzzy carpets, take a moment to think about the right color to suit your working mood.
Embrace the blues. With calming associations that suggest open seas and clear skies, a gentle blue is perfect for spacious, flat surfaces.
Warm up your spirit. A little pop of color can actually help your brain remember the little details and thus enhance memory and performance. Choose red to boost your confidence.
Think green. By encouraging positivity, green hues are just the right choice for getting you through a tedious business schedule. As the color of nature, it also works wonders for your creativity.
Keep the Flow
Once the atmosphere has been set and colors picked, you can finally start bringing some furniture in. Since your home office will be your creative hive for the bigger part of the day, try not to waste time and money on fashionable pieces that use up a lot of space and demand constant maintenance, but pick traditional, comfortable ones instead. A cozy, back supporting chair should be a center of your working shrine, so start your furnishing by choosing the one that suits your body shape and sitting habits the most, and build the rest of your office around that.
Being the second phase of the process, a spacious table and some additional space for storage can then be chosen to match the chair and general mood of the office. Opt for smooth surfaces and curvaceous edges – the more natural and flowing your surroundings feel, the more relaxed and inspired you’ll be.
A Final Touch
Try not to overburden your working space with family photos, memorabilia and other reminders of your personal life and leisure time. Instead, focus on building a clean, uncluttered space with a lot of potential for storing and organizing. Include a whiteboard, to keep track of all of your tasks, or simply use an empty space on the wall for your sticky notes, reminders and graphs.
Creative chaos. Although it is always desirable for a working space to be clean and tidy, some people’s brains simply function much better when there’s a little mess to liven up the room.
Plant a flower. Greenery isn’t reserved exclusively for patios and balconies – having a little planted palm in your office can help you unknot and inspire your breakthrough business idea.
Ultimately, the whole reason for escaping your 9 to 5 job is the monotonous, uninspiring atmosphere. Unlike a cubicle, a home office is a place you’ll enjoy spending your time in and brainstorming new mind-blowing ideas. Pick up the paint brush, frame your favorite motivational quote and feel the space liberating your mind.