Telecommuting isn’t just for the Millennial set. According to a recent survey by the AARP, 34% of older Americans would like to work from home, too. But whether you work remotely or simply want to create a space that’s conducive to health and productivity in the coming new year, redesigning your home office is a great place to start.
The U.S. home improvement and repair industry is worth about $326.1 billion, but you don’t need to plan an expensive remodeling project to design the perfect home office. In fact, there are countless ways to transform your home office. And with the right physical space, you can accomplish each and every one of your goals in the new year.
With that in mind, here are just a few home office design tips to consider when revamping your home office.
Keep Your To-Do List Front and Center
When considering the layout of your desk and the wall space above and around your desk, the first element you want to add is a to-do list, which should ideally be updated on a regular basis. You can get a mini whiteboard with dry erase markers, go vintage with a chalkboard and chalk; or simply post a paper calendar or other organization tool on the wall to look at on a daily basis. Writing down your goals for the day is shown to boost the chance that you’ll reach them, so keep your list of tasks in a visible place that will provide a boost of encouragement every time you see it.
Engage in Puzzles During Breaks, But Don’t Get Distracted
Remember: your home office doesn’t have to be all about spreadsheets and to-do lists!
You can and should keep some fun distractions on hand as well. That could mean a bookshelf with some of your favorite books or a thick stack of sudoku puzzles. The neurotransmitter dopamine is produced when doing puzzles, making them a great stress reliever to engage in during a short break period. With that in mind, it’s perfectly acceptable to keep a small collection of word searches, crossword puzzles, short reading materials, and other types of puzzles and activities. These will keep your mind occupied without causing a distraction.
These options are also much better than television or social media browsing, which tend to be productivity killers. Of course, it’s also important to make sure your breaks are structured. Taking a break whenever you ‘feel’ like it is far less productive.
Consider a New Shade
More than one-third of respondents in a 2017 Interior Design Trends survey said they would choose a neutral color palette when redecorating their home, but there are several shades scientifically proven to boost productive habits.
“There are certain colors that stimulate your brain in a certain way. Oranges and yellow hues are said to make one hungry; this could be the reason why more and more restaurants are using it in their schemes. Choose a color that is not too gaudy so that it does not distract you. Keeping in mind the climate and the heat, try selecting a neutral color that will soothe you in summer and provide warmth in winters. Lemons, pastel blues and creams are good color choices,” says Lifehack.
Rearrange When Creativity Strikes
Finally, don’t hesitate to rearrange your office whenever you feel that spark of spatial creativity. Giving the room a fresh look every once in a while helps you feel more at peace and essentially creates an entirely new feel, helping you stay productive without growing bored. Give it a try the next time you’re feeling stuck in a productivity rut.
Ultimately, creating a space conducive to productivity for the coming new year can help you stay on top of your goals and add a sense of purpose to your work-at-home routine.