Home Office Design Tips for a Winning Work-Life Balance

  | Suhayl Laher

For many people, working from home seems like the ideal scenario - working when it suits you and avoiding the gruelling commute - however, the reality can be more challenging than you might imagine. Merging living space with a working environment has the potential to negatively impact on your work-life balance, even for the most focused and dedicated individuals - leaving you feeling constantly torn between the two.

But, in today’s post, we’re breaking down the key elements of home office design that will help you to create a distinctive divide between your work and home life to achieve the ultimate equilibrium.

Carve out a work area

For many professionals working from home, it can be tricky to find additional space to adapt into a home office - unless you’re lucky enough to have a spare room available. However, workspace doesn’t necessarily need to be behind a closed door. With a little creativity, it’s perfectly possible to design a dedicated work area, even in shared areas of your home - although it’s best to avoid heavily used communal areas like the kitchen or living room, which pose a host of distractions.

Whether you carve out a work corner in your bedroom, landing or dining room, making a conscious decision to only work in this particular area will help you to define the boundaries between work and home life - both physically and mentally.

Choose your colours wisely

Colour psychology has long been a topic of discussion and shouldn’t be overlooked when it comes to designing your home office. Different colours evoke different emotions and associations - for example, blue and green are thought to promote a sense of calm and serenity, while oranges and yellows are believed to stimulate creativity and productivity.

When choosing your colour scheme, think about which colours have a positive impact on your mood - you want a space that feels inspiring and light, rather than fussy and stifling.

Opting for coordinated colour schemes that complement your existing home design will create a smooth transition between the different areas, while still defining them - whether you create zones with coloured mosaic tiles on the floor or paint the walls in contrasting colours.

Opt for ergonomic furniture

If you want to maximise productivity in your home office, it pays to invest in quality office furniture right from the start - even if it’s secondhand. Uncomfortable chairs and unsuitable desks can lead to physical discomfort and long-term health issues, like a backache and posture problems - but they can also have a negative impact on your productivity levels.

Investing in ergonomically designed office chairs and desks will increase comfort levels and may even help to boost your productivity in the process - as well as giving you a sense of pride in your home office.

Stay organised

Another key to achieving a healthy work-life balance when working from home is staying organised - no mean feat when you’re working in a small space. For this reason, it’s vital your home office stays as neat and tidy as possible.

From ample shelves and filing cabinets for storage to implementing your own ‘clear desk’ policy, maintaining a well-organised work area will help you to switch off at the end of the day - leaving you free to relax and unwind, even when your desk is in view.

Focus on design aspects that impact productivity

A key consideration for maintaining a healthy balance between your home life and work life is to make the hours at your desk as productive as possible - so it’s beneficial to focus on design elements known to help in this regard. One crucial aspect is natural light, which is proven to positively impact on productivity. Similarly, introducing fresh air and indoor plants to the space will improve air quality in your workspace, while also creating a fresh and natural edge in your home office’s interior.

Whether you’re a new startup or adopting the latest ‘remote working’ ethos, finding a healthy work-life balance can be challenging - but hopefully, with these design tips in mind, you’ll be able to design a space that allows you to focus on the right priorities at the right time.

Author's bio: Suhayl Laher works at Tiles Direct, one of the UK’s largest independent tile distributors and retailers - bringing design inspiration to homeowners, architects and developers.

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