Finding a workspace area at home can be a struggle, especially if you aren’t able to have an entire room dedicated to your working needs.
However, whether you use the kitchen table or have the quest room or garage to yourself, it is possible to make the most out of your home workspace. The only room I would suggest totally avoiding is the master bedroom. Why? Because this is a room that is your sanctuary; a room dedicated to your rest and wellbeing. Using it as an office space can leave you feeling stressed and unable to switch off from work – especially just before bedtime.
If you’re struggling to put your stamp on a workspace in your home, here are my suggestions and tips to make it easier for you.
No dedicated space of your own
It can be quite difficult to keep some sort of order with your office equipment etc., if you don’t have a dedicated space of your own – but it is possible. Whether you’re working at the kitchen table or in the living area, your number one rule has to be storage that is portable and dedicated.
If there’s room for you to have a shelf or cupboard of your own, great. Make full use of box files and stackable storage containers.
If you’re using the guest bedroom as your office, you need to have a space that is dual-purpose. You will need to easily and quickly change your office into a guest room at a moment’s notice, if the need arises.
Obviously portable devices such as laptops, Mac books and tablets all make this so much easier, as you don’t have to worry about hiding a bulky base unit, separate keyboard and monitor.
If there’s room in your guest bedroom, look to install a storage unit for all of your office items – one that blends in nicely with the existing guest bedroom furniture. Having a desk that doubles as a dressing table is a great idea, as well as housing all of your paperwork and books in either a bookcase, cupboard or separate shelf.
Converted garage/loft room/summer house etc.
If you have the opportunity and space to utilise these areas – do so. It will give you a dedicated space for yourself and will help make you feel more professional too.
Having this space enables you to decorate it as you see fit. You also have the added advantage of being able to ensure all of your work equipment is always in one place and at your disposal.
However, as with a non-dedicated space, you still need to bear the following organisational tips in mind.
The portable office
If you’re in a job that requires you to be mobile, you’ll want your storage to be transportable. Look to utilise plastic storage containers with handles – makes it super easy to carry them AND to stack them in your car.
You can get containers in various sizes, so look to have smaller lidded ones to store your essential office supplies (pens, paperclips etc.).
The need to be organised – quick tips
Whether you have a dedicated working space or not, you need to take these organisational tips in mind, to ensure you are working to full productivity, to your available time and to ease the frustration of trying to find what you need!
- Have systems and processes in place
- Ensure you have adequate files set up – both online and offline
- Look for storage that is suitable AND practical for your needs
- Box files on a shelf will ensure you have somewhere to store important pieces of paper (such as receipts etc.) and have them to hand
- A dedicated cupboard for all of your stationery will ensure you have adequate supplies and that they’re out of sight
During the rest of this month we will be looking at the practicalities of home office spaces in greater detail – so you’ll know the best way to make the most of your working space – ensuring you cater both for your needs and those of your clients.
If you’re struggling to find your home office space, why not take a look at my Pinterest boards for inspiration? You’ll find great ideas for large and small areas alike. If you have any home office problems, why not leave a comment in the comments section below and I’ll see if I can help!
Images © doble.d & Iriana Shiyan/Dollar Photo Club