6 Tips for Setting Up a Conducive Home Office in Singapore
Working from home means you need less time to prepare and commute to go to work. You can bond more with your kids or get your chores done. This setup can be very rewarding or very distracting. Although it is far from the usual work environment, creating a conducive and productive workspace at home is possible. Here's how.
Carve Out an Area for Your Home Office
The first step to creating an efficient workplace in your home is to have a dedicated area for your home office. Instead of working on random available corners of your flat, it is good to decide on one specific spot where you can constantly work on your tasks. Having a dedicated work area gives you a mental cue that you should be in work mode.
It is good to transform an extra room into your home office to take complete control of your preferred work environment and keep your work essentials in one place. If you don't have an extra room, a corner in your living room, your dining table, or a part of your bedroom can be converted into a work corner. When setting up your home office, make sure to choose a spot where you can minimise distractions. Avoid working near places where you usually rest, like your sofa or bed. Doing this will mentally save you from mixing your personal and work spaces.
Get Rid of Distractions
Once you find a corner where you set up your home office, try to make it free from distractions. Minimise the use of your phone unless you need it for work. Stay away from your television, especially when other members of the household are binge-watching series. Also, stay away from unfinished home chores that you can finish during the break or after work. Create a clear line between your daily personal tasks and your work to help you stay focused and productive on both aspects during their dedicated times.
Get the Right Home Office Furniture
Aside from selecting a place away from distractions, having the right furniture for your home office is paramount to building a conducive home office. Since you work for 40 to 45 hours a week in Singapore, you should get proper furniture to support your body during long work hours.
The right office desk should provide you with an ample surface for your laptop or computer screen while providing you with extra space to comfortably move while working. The suitable office desk needs to be at the right height so that your screen is at eye level or at least slightly below it to prevent slouching. A multifunctional office table also comes with storage space for office supplies and other important items. When choosing a desk for your home office, always consider your storage needs to ensure a clutter-free and productive space.
If you're in need of more storage solutions, choose a mobile pedestal that you can tuck under your office table. Mobile pedestals typically come with a locked upper drawer. To store extra files and office equipment, you might need a bigger filing cabinet.
If you think your stackable dining chair is enough for your home office, think again. The chairs in your dining room are designed to be seated for only a limited time. Invest in an efficient ergonomic office chair to support proper posture while working and avoid back injuries due to prolonged sitting. A good office chair helps minimise muscle strains. Check out this list to find the right office chair for you:
- The backrest must support the natural S shape of your back.
- The chair must provide proper lumbar support to prevent slouching.
- The chair's height must be adjustable. The proper office chair should allow your feet to land flat on the ground while sitting.
Keep Your Home Office Organised
Organisation is an important skill to develop as you work at home. As with the traditional office setup, your home office must also be kept tidy and well-organised. Having a clean workspace helps you focus and be more productive. It is easier to get things done when you put the right things in their right places.
Keep your filing cabinets well-arranged, including your pens and other smaller office items. Always maintain an uncluttered table surface. Place a trash bin under your table to prevent crumpled papers from piling on your desk.
Avoid tangled cords, they can be really stressful to handle sometimes. Use organisational items like cable clips and gear ties or set up a cable station on your table to keep all your cables accessible without running all over your workspace. Utilise the chord hole on your office desk to organise computer cords under the table. When working with electronics, always remember that safety should come first.
Personalise Your Home Office
Remote work means that you can control the environment based on what works for you. Add life to your personal workspace by painting your walls. Neutral paints like white, cream, or beige create a clean and spacious look and can be paired with any furniture or accent decorations. Blue or green paints create a calm and relaxing ambiance. As much as possible, minimise bold colours or use them for accent walls or decorations to prevent them from distracting your eyes. Do not use dark colours in abundance and invite natural light into your room. Decorate your space with items that inspire you—art pieces, photographed scenery, mementos, or certificates. Make a vision board where you can post your to-do list and keep yourself updated with your progress. Feel free to add decorative pieces and greenery as you please. You can also build a reading nook where you can relax during your break. It is good to build a home office that adapts to your needs and lifestyle to help you stay focused and motivated.
Maintain Good Air Quality
A stuffy workspace is both distracting and unhealthy. You don't want a humid space to work in, your computer would agree. You also don't want an overly cold area. While office temperatures can be too cold for your liking, you can choose your preferred temperature when working from home. To maintain a conducive working area, always keep your room well-ventilated and safe from contaminants that can harm your health. Invest in an energy-efficient air conditioning unit with innovative air-filtering properties to improve your indoor air quality. Add some plants to add a fresh twist to your home office.
Working from home is part of the new norm that we should embrace. Whether you have a spacious area or a smaller one dedicated to remote working, you have the power to turn any space to your advantage.
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