When it comes to working remotely, your work from home office setup is everything. Your desk, specifically, is a place you’re going to spend the majority of your time working from home. It’s important to create a work area where you are not only comfortable but also highly productive.
Working from home - especially if the arrangement is new for you - has its own unique set of challenges. Creating a space that will help you overcome some of those challenges is critical. That’s why we’ve pulled together some tips to help you choose the best desk setup for your home office:
1. Make sure your home office is private
The best work from home desk setup starts in the part of the house where you choose to place your office. Your work area should be private and away from the main traffic areas in your home, in a place where you can shut the door. This allows you to keep distractions to a minimum.
Your workspace should be somewhere where you can imagine spending many hours each day. If you can get plenty of natural sunlight, that’s a bonus. Put your desk in a space that makes you feel happy, calm, and productive.
When you arrange your desk setup, make sure you have easy access to plenty of electrical outlets or power strips for your devices, chargers, lamps, printers, or other office equipment you use regularly. You’ll want to make the layout of the space as easy to navigate as possible so it’s comfortable for you. In other words, remove as many barriers to concentration and productivity as you can.
2. Make your work area as ergonomic as possible
An ergonomic work area is essential when you spend a lot of time working at a desk. Professionals who spend the majority of their work time sitting at a desk often develop a range of physical problems, including back, neck, and shoulder pain, as well as hip issues.
Making your work area as ergonomic as possible will help to alleviate or prevent many physical symptoms of sedentary work. Here are a few things you can do to make sure your space is healthy for your body:
- Get a comfortable, ergonomic desk chair with adjustable height and armrests
- Give yourself the option to switch to a standing desk when you need to (an adjustable tray table is a great, inexpensive solution)
- If you use a laptop, buy an adjustable laptop stand to raise your screen to eye-level and opt for a wireless mouse and keyboard
Setting up a desk that is healthy for your body is the first step toward success when you work at home. Still, make sure you’re getting up regularly to take breaks and move your body. Here’s a great guide with more specific instructions on how to create an ergonomic desk setup.
3. Position your desk for video conferencing
These days, video conferencing is a must for remote workers and teams. Like your desk itself, the area around you should look professional and organized. Most likely, you’ll be video conferencing from home, so you want to make sure your colleagues don’t see a cluttered or messy space behind you.
If you don’t have a great solution for your background, you can purchase a privacy screen to place behind your work area prior to calls. Some video conferencing tools such as Zoom also allow you to place an image in the background of your video, which helps to conceal any unsightly details behind you.
4. Set up peripheral office equipment and supplies
Your best work from home desk setup options include the peripheral equipment and supplies you need to complete your daily tasks. Once you’ve decided where to put your desk and you have a good background for video conferencing, set up your office equipment and make sure you have supplies on hand.
Set up your printer or scanner in a comfortable place on or near your desk. Then, stock your shelves or drawers with printer paper, notepads, pencils, paperclips, and any other essential supplies you use on a daily basis. Make a space for your calendar, planner, and notepads, and have a spot to store pens and pencils.
If you enjoy listening to music while you work, set up a Bluetooth speaker nearby. And if you have a device like an Amazon Echo, you can also utilize Alexa’s AI features to assist you throughout the day.
5. Make your workspace your own
Once you’ve got your work from home desk setup in place, it’s time to truly make it yours. Infuse your personality into your space and make it an enjoyable, motivating place to work each day.
Decorate your desk however you like. You can display a few photos of your family or set up a few decorative keepsakes. Include some of your favorite books on or near your desk (on a separate shelf if you want), and hang artwork or photos on the wall.
Your desk and its surroundings play a hand in helping you feel good about where you’re working. Working at home can be isolating sometimes, so it helps to have a space you feel great about spending so much time.
6. Keep your desk free of clutter
A cluttered workspace can make you feel anxious and disorganized, so it’s critical to keep the space around you clean and well-sorted. Just like establishing a strong work-from-home routine for productivity, you also want to keep your desk as professional and orderly as you can.
Try not to let things like mail, books, office supplies, or file folders pile up around you. Clean your desk and the surfaces around it from time to time, making sure to dust and organize. Getting into this habit will help you take more pride in your work area.
Choose A Home Office Setup That Enables You To Do Your Best Work
There are many unpredictable variables at play when you work from home, so it’s important to take control of whatever you can. Your best work from home desk setup is largely in your control, so take advantage of the opportunity to create a space that promotes productivity and happiness.
What works best for someone else’s home office might not work best for yours. The ideas in this article are a great starting point, but don’t hesitate to test new setup ideas until you find what enables you to do your best work.
What have you done to make your remote desk setup work for you? Let us know in the comments section below.
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