May 31st, 2017

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Just like anything else, working from home has its pros and cons. Many times you can set your own schedule, be in a comfortable environment and increase your productivity. However, working from home also can be distracting and chaotic if there’s a lot happening around you. This is why you need a home office. While you have a lot of flexibility in your workspace, there are a few tips you should follow.

Caucasian woman at home workspace

Find a Dedicated Space

Your kids are running around, the dog is barking, laundry is piled up in the corner and the TV is going off in the background. How can you get any work done in this environment? You need a dedicated space and time for your work, and the rest of the household needs to respect this as your place. Whether you have a room with a door or a quiet corner somewhere, you need a dedicated space that’s just for working. Then you can get in the right frame of mind to be productive and not be caught in the craziness of home life.

Make It Ergonomic

Once you have chosen the perfect spot, make it comfortable. Set up your desk and chair with ergonomics in mind so you can be there for hours. Your desk should be high enough so there is clearance for your thighs, knees and feet. If your desk is too low and can’t be adjusted, place boards or raisers under the legs of the desk. Next up is your chair. It should be high enough that your knees are level with your hips and your wrists and hands are straight and level or below your elbows.

For your computer and keyboard, place your monitor about an arm’s length away from your body. The top of the screen should be at eye level so you don’t have to stain your neck looking up or down for long periods of time. Invest in an ergonomic keyboard and mouse to prevent tendonitis and carpal tunnel.

Lighten It Up

Don’t forget about lighting when you’re setting up your home office. You need enough light to work, but you don’t want a glare. If you spend most of the time on a computer, face your screen so that your main light source is to the side to prevent a glare. Natural light is best for your office, so try to pick a room with windows. You also should consider task lighting and other sources of light, such as a desk lamp. Eye strain is a common problem, so do what you can do reduce it.

Add Some Personal Touches

You want to reap all the benefits of working from home, so take advantage of making the space your own. You are not limited by your boss or the owner of a building so you can do anything you want. Hang up a beautiful tapestry or painting that reflects your style and helps the room feel finished. Put down a rug and add a comfy chair to make it feel cozy. Hang up pictures of your family, pets or favorite places to remind yourself why you’re working so hard. Make the space your own and full of things you love. Just don’t go too overboard so you don’t add in too many distractions.

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