With the Coronavirus Pandemic raging throughout the world, and still doing so today, more people are spending time working from home. Whether they are working from home full-time or part-time, the reality is that they still need a dedicated space to work when they are at home. I myself spent a large chunk of time working from home through the Pandemic, and have made countless changes to my home office with the aim of inspiring productivity.
In this article, I am going to take you through 15 different ideas related to home office decor that you can make to your home, providing the style and space suits, of course, to ensure you are as productive as possible when working from home. These ideas will go through into different categories, from design changes you can make all the way to essential products you need!
One of the best things you can do for your home office is to make it ergonomic! An ergonomic office is a productive office, as we all know and have experienced! Luckily, we have you covered! Check out this article from Smooth Moves on how to create the perfect ergonomic home office.
Let's face it, you have probably come across this blog post because you are looking for ways to improve your productivity whilst you are working from home. These tips from HR Cloud will help when it comes to general productivity tips! If you are looking for specific, home office related, tips then read on!
So, without further ado, let’s get into it!
Working from home causes almost unimaginable fatigue, and this is only made worse if you do not have a home office. Luckily, Yodel.io have some amazing tips on avoiding work-from-home fatigue!
Design & Layout Changes
These tips will go through some different design and layout changes you can make to your home office decor in order to make your home office work better for you, and therefore, make you work better from your home office.
Perhaps a left-field suggestion to start off with, but chalkboard paint is a great addition to any home office space, and it is relatively inexpensive to purchase! Not only does it look amazing, and is available in a wide array of colours, but it also adds a crucial element of practicality too!
I cannot tell you how many times I have been working in my home office, on a call, and need to take some notes suddenly. Only to find myself scrambling around my office looking for a notepad, Post-It note or anything else I can write on before this crucial information leaves my brain. Chalkboard paint solves all of this by allowing you to write directly on your wall, leaving your notes right in front of your face. Literally.
Make it Minimalist
Minimalism carries a lot of benefits. It ensures there is no dead space within your room, it allows more free space within the room giving it the feeling there is more space than there actually is. And, of course, it induces feelings of calm which is perfect for a home office! There’s a very good reason more and more people are converting to minimalism within their homes, even if it is just in one or two rooms. Whether you’re looking to clear your mind and work a solid 8 hour workday in peace, or you just need a nice relaxing space to work the extra hour or two you need to one night in the week to get your work done, a minimalist home office design is going to be perfect for you.
Create a Designated Home Office Area
One of the many issues I have seen when people start working from home is their inability to create space within their home for home office decor. Whether there is a genuine lack of space, or they are unwilling to clear out the rubbish in exchange for an amazing home office, this depends on the individual circumstances.
There is nothing more annoying when you have a busy day ahead of you than trying to work from your bedroom, sofa or kitchen table. Especially if you live with other people! There will constantly be distractions from partners, family members or general household maintenance that become too much to bear. Eventually, you take focus from your work to run errands!
Having a dedicated room for your home office is perfect. It allows you to shut yourself into space, with no distractions, to get what you need to get done for the day. Whether you work in set blocks of ‘deep work’ and allow time for family in-between, or you just dislike being disturbed at all during your workday, well this depends on the person.
Layer in Personal Touches
We know the feeling… When you work in the office of your employer, you are very limited in terms of the style you can go for with your office/desk/cubicle. This can sometimes be an issue as we know people are more productive in spaces they feel comfortable in. This is where your home office decor can play a major role!
With your home office decor, you are not limited when it comes to style. You can have a red wall, a blue wall, a black wall or any other colour of your choosing. You can also choose to add in any other style elements you feel comfortable with! Add those family photos, go with that colour chair you wanted. Go nuts, really. This can make you happier working in your home office, and therefore, make you more productive too.
Segment your Space
So far in this article, we have been going on the basis that you have a spare room in your home to turn into a home office. In many cases, this simply isn’t feasible. You may not have space in your home to create a dedicated home office. The good news? There are workarounds that work really well!
Segmenting your space is a great way of creating a dedicated area for your home office decor to live, without disrupting the rest of your space. For example, if you only have room in the corner of your bedroom for a desk, go nuts with this! Turn this corner into your home office.
A great rug can help massively with this. Simply place the rug down in the area your ‘home office’ is going to be, and place your furniture on top of the rug. There are so many different options of rug that work well with this kind of use. You could choose a natural material like jute, sisal or bamboo. Alternatively, there are a wide array of synthetic options that will do the job to an excellent standard such as polypropylene and polyester too!
Include Comfortable Furniture
Desks and task chairs are great, but they really aren’t the be-all and end-all of an amazing home office. If you have room, ensure you place some comfortable furniture within your home office decor. Not only will this make your space look great, but it also adds some new places to work too!
Let’s say you have been sitting in the same place for 3 hours. Productivity is wearing thin and you need a change of scenery for a little bit to ensure you are remaining as productive as possible! There is nothing wrong with relocating to a sofa temporarily, or a futon for that matter! Even if it’s a nice comfortable armchair for you to relax in whilst you compile those reports. Comfortable furniture doesn’t always have to be a “no-no” when it comes to home office decor.
Houseplants, Houseplants, Houseplants
Oh, how I debated putting this into the ‘home office essentials’ segment that will come to in the article a little bit later. But, as houseplants add to the overall look and feel of your home office decor, I thought I’d add it in here instead! Houseplants are essential to making a home office more comfortable and productive. Why? Well, let me tell you!
Having a houseplant/s in your office is great for a multitude of reasons. They help reduce stress, according to a 2010 study by the new University of Technology in Sydney. They help increase productivity, according to a 2014 study by the University of Exeter and they can even help to reduce sickness! This was written in a 2015 report from Human Spaces. They even clean the air, thanks to their process of photosynthesis!
So, with all these benefits, it’s important to ensure you have a houseplant or two in your home office!
Minimise the Visual Clutter
I know I mentioned that one of the main advantages of a home office is that you can decorate it how you like, and that is true! One thing which is important to note, however, is that too many items can create clutter. This is one thing you should never have within your home office decor. Primarily because clutter can create stress, and stress can lead to a reduction in productivity levels! No matter where you are working from, it’s important to remain as productive as possible.
Invest in Storage
Okay, I get it. When planning your home office decor, storage can feel like a secondary thought. People believe that when working from home, they will not need as much storage as they do in their employer’s office. This is false. The reality is for remote workers, especially working remotely full time, you are going to need places to store important files when you cannot take them into the office.
When planning storage for your home office, it is important to consider every possibility. You may not have room for filing cabinets and cupboards, especially if your home office is set up in the corner of a room with another purpose, your bedroom or living room for example. If this is the case, then you can look at placing shelves on the wall behind your desk to store files on! This is a great and cost-effective solution which can also look really nice when done properly.
Turn your Hallway into an Office
Following on from the theme of not having enough space within your home to fill with home office decor, why not try turning a hallway into your home office instead? If your hallway is wide enough, or you have a handy little nook under your stairs, it is very simple to add in a desk, small task chair and a little storage into this space to create a fully functional home office.
When done right, this not only looks aesthetically pleasing but also saves a lot of space in other rooms. Not to mention the fact it allows you to keep your existing rooms there for their sole purpose, comfort.
Here we go… Now into the essentials, every home office needs in order to maximise productivity.
Home Office Decor Essentials
In this section of the article, I will take you through some of the essentials you need to make your home office as productive as it can be! We will talk about home office decor items such as desks, as well as smaller decorative pieces. So, here we go…
This is quite possibly the most essential piece of equipment you need in your home office. If you have the budget and space, I would highly recommend investing in a great sit/stand desk.
Sitting for long periods of time is linked to a wide variety of health problems, including high blood pressure and heart disease. High blood pressure can also lead to other health conditions such as diabetes and kidney issues. Not something you want to be thinking about when trying to get your work done for the day. Of course, there are a large number of things you can do to counteract this, taking regular breaks being the biggest one, but investing in a standing desk will make this so much easier!
Taking regular standing breaks whilst you work is sure to make you happier, healthier and more productive! Not to mention, they can look amazing too!
The majority of people, when working from home, are going to be working from a laptop. Many companies are now choosing to give their employees company laptops rather than static PCs. Primarily because we are now in a work from home culture, accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this does mean people are often limited to working on a very small screen.
Investing in an external monitor (or asking your company to provide you with one) is a brilliant move. It allows you to not only increase productivity by increasing screen real estate, but it can also help your posture. An external monitor can be combined with an external keyboard and mouse, allowing your laptop to be pushed further away from you and pushed further up to your eye level, correcting your posture.
It goes without saying that when you are comfortable at work, you are happier and more productive too!
Speakers & Noise Cancelling Headphones
How kind are we? We really are giving you two for the price of one here. In order to ensure your home office is as productive as it can be, you need to ensure you have invested in a great set of speakers, and a great set of noise-cancelling headphones.
The speakers are to be used when you are not on calls and want to play your focus music playlist to get you in the mood to be productive. Whereas your noise-cancelling headphones are generally going to be used in times where you need to get into the zone with some deep work, or are on a call and cannot be disturbed by background noise.
Whatever you will be using them for, and whatever you are going to be playing through them, noise-cancelling headphones and a great speaker set are a worthwhile investment for any home office. And they really do come as part of your home office decor too, especially the speakers.
LED Lighting Strips
LED lighting strips, as well as giving your home office decor that much needed spruce up, can also have AMAZING benefits when it comes to productivity too! Did you know that different colours can have a huge impact on your productivity? Here are some amazing colour choices for your LED lighting strips.
Red: If you work a physically demanding job and are “on the go” for many hours of the day. Red is a great colour to increase productivity. It is a stimulating colour that raises the heart rate and gets your blood pumping, helping to invoke the “fight or flight” response within the brain.
Blue: Are you an office worker who sits at a desk 24/7 it seems? Blue is a great colour for your LED lighting strips. Blue is brilliant for handling administrative tasks that require maximum focus as it helps your brain produce feelings of calm. Calmness aids concentration and concentration in high levels mean high levels of productivity.
Green: Green is a harmonising colour and, unlike red can, it does not strain the eyes! It strikes a lovely balance between the other primary colours and creates a sense of calm and reassurance. Feeling overwhelmed by the number of things you need to get done before the day ends? Add a splash of green to your home office decor, using LED lighting is GREAT for this, to invoke feelings of calm.
Add in a Rug
Yes, I know I sound biased saying this as we are one of the UK’s leading online rug retailers. But the truth is, I am not being biased at all! As so many people were forced into working from home overnight, many people did not have time to get their office space set up properly for them in time. This resulted in people working from coffee shops among other places.
Rugs will add a completely new dimension to your home office decor. They’ll allow you to cover up the ugly desk chair you have in your bedroom, or they will provide you with a place to segment your space.
There are plenty of different rug options for you to go in with. Whether you are looking for a grey rug, sisal or jute rug, a Moroccan rug or even a wool rug. No matter what style you choose for your home office decor, there is no going back with a high-quality rug!
So, there we have it… 10 home office decor tips to inspire maximum productivity for the next few weeks, and 10 home office essentials you need to keep your office as productive as possible. I hope this helps you get your home office up to scratch, and makes you as productive as possible whilst basking in its beauty!