Small businesses make up a huge percentage of the UK economy, and as the way we do business keeps evolving many of these companies will be run from home. Whilst working from home can be a blessing in disguise for start-up businesses, it can also be a curse. Especially if your home office is missing key ingredients.
First of all, distractions will be everywhere. From the snack cupboard being within arm’s reach, to children running around and causing havoc. In those circumstances, it can be difficult to maintain a professional appearance, let alone stay motivated and productive. If you are running your business from home and struggling try not to worry too much. There are lots of affordable, small changes you can make to your home office in order to help.
Review Your Lighting
Lighting is something that people often overlook when it comes to office space. Such a simple change can make a huge difference to your work. With over 1 in 10 workers suffering from eye strain due to lack of light in the office, make sure you don’t become one of those statistics. Natural light is also scientifically proven to improve mood, energy levels, focus and productivity. If possible make sure your home desk is situated near a window if possible.
Smells Affect Your Mood
Let’s be honest, if you are working from home you will be surrounded by a mixture of aromas (some good, some not so good!). This is expected when you live, breathe, cook and relax in that same place. That’s before you factor things in like pets, children and anyone else you live with.
Similarly to natural light, your frame of mind and productivity can alter dramatically depending on the smells within the surrounding environment. Scientific studies have actually been carried out relating to smell and productivity, and peppermint has been proven to increase typing speeds and the ability to organise documents! Pine scents are associated with increased alertness, and cinnamon has been found to improve overall focus.
Try A Change of Scenery
The thing that drives most people working from home mad is the fact they are sat staring at the same four blank walls every day. The monotony can significantly lower your mood, let alone productivity. That is why it is a good idea to shake things up with a regular change of scenery. This could be as simple as working from the kitchen table one day, or even a couple of hours. The physical act of moving somewhere different will help to lift your spirits.
Get Down With Nature
The link between humans and nature dates back centuries. It is easy to forget how important nature is when it comes to our psychological functionality. By adding some greenery to your office, you could improve your wellbeing by 6%, and your creativity by 15%. Another way to get a bit closer to nature whilst working from home is to go outside for regular walks. Make sure you take that 30-minute break at lunchtime and use it to reconnect with nature.
Get Rid Of The Desktop Phone
We can all get overwhelmed with communication and technology sometimes, it is completely natural. As part of getting your professional home office set up, you will have probably invested in a desktop phone to help you feel more corporate. It is something that is standard within larger organisations, so when you set up on your own a phone seems like something you should have as standard.
With the increased use of video conferencing in the past year or so, and the ability to carry out presentations etc. remotely, the office desktop phone is losing its place in the corporate world. So if you are wanting to run a more modern and tech-savvy business, think minimal. Get rid of your desktop phone and stick with a mobile.
We hope this has given you a few ideas on how to revitalise your working from home office. How many of our 5 things your Home Office is missing applied to your home office? Do let us know if there is anything you would add! Don’t forget a virtual office will help to keep your personal address separate from your business too.