A Productive Workspace, Your Home Office and YOU

by Editor · 9 comments

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OK, so if you’ve embraced the life of an entrepreneur (like me!), chances are you work from your home and have some sort of ‘home office’ get-up.  (Also like me!)

That is awesome, because you NEED that space.  Even if it’s just a tiny corner of your bedroom with a desk in front of a window that you can claim as your own, that’s a great start.  You need that clearly defined ‘place of work’.

It’s a mental thing.

Just like at a J.O.B. you have a clearly defined work setting, so too do you need that for yourself in your home.  Otherwise there will be nothing in your brain to trigger that switch of –

“Hey! It’s work time!”

Instead of-

“Hey! I’m home! And I’m supposed to be working, but really I’d rather just watch a little T.V…. take a little cat nap… rummage around the kitchen… etc.”

Know what I mean?

Like I said, a total mental thing.

It’s called creating boundaries for yourself.  Yikes that sounds completely boring doesn’t it?  But really, if you want to make this whole entrepreneurial thing work for you, boundaries are essential.

Boundaries are:

A clearly defined work schedule each week and a clearly defined relaxation schedule each week.  And clearly defined family time.  Clearly defined YOU time.

And… a clearly defined space or place where you do each of these things, especially when it comes to your work.

After all, if your work space isn’t a place that fosters your productivity, it’s likely you’ll be hitting the pavement before long searching out another dreaded J.O.B.

And we don’t want none ‘o THAT.  Right?

Just say right!

A lot of people tend to underestimate the power of a functional and comfortable home office. It’s the whole ‘everyone has one so what’s so great about it’ mentality.   But it’s imperative for you to have a spot where you can work in complete comfort… where you can ‘get in the zone’.

Believe it or not, a home office should NOT just be a cluttered corner you work in. Making an effort towards carving out a perfect work space can be the difference between success and failure for many entrepreneurs.  It’s already way too easy to get sidetracked when you work from home, so making sure that you are set up for optimum success is vitally important.

That said, what exactly makes a great work space or a great ‘home office’?

What do you need to put in it to help you move and stay ahead of the game?

Is your current set-up perfect as-is?

Or is it more likely you need to implement a few changes?

Choosing where you’ll set yourself up shouldn’t just be all about convenience, although that will obviously always play a role.  Your workspace also needs to have the right ambiance and mood.

Some Things to Consider

Avoid high traffic areas in your house; places where people usually plod back and forth.   Also if you can find a spot near a window… awesome!

Good ventilation as well as a good dose of sunshine can chase away dreaded drowsiness.

Oh and coffee works too!

Also, some of you who are in a work-at-home situation may say that a physical door isn’t really necessary when creating a home office.

I say balderdash!

That may be true for some but if you are a mother of two capricious boys, (like me!) you will need to lock yourself in when it’s time to work. Chain the door, don some ear muffs, and crank out productivity like it’s goin’ outta style.

OK, perhaps skip the ear muffs, otherwise you won’t be able to hear them if they happen to be murdering each other.  But the other two totally count!

And really, this won’t just help you focus; it will also keep their sticky little fingers off your equipment and keep their curious little minds from asking you 50 million questions every other nano second.

Yes I’ve timed it.  Have you ever tried to get work done between nano seconds?

All that being said; a perfect home office is actually quite subjective.

Some people can’t work when there is clutter around them and still others that hate an overly organized workspace.  Some of you might be a bit like me and have your desk littered with notes, papers, drawings from the kids, various cups or bottles of water, a timer, a roll of tape, keyboard wipes, and… hmnn… we could be here all day.

I’m thinking it’s time to clean off my desk!

Or you could be the polar opposite and be a total neat freak… with everything having a place and everything in its place.  If that’s you I totally admire you.  Seriously, my hat is OFF.  I would LOVE to be that organized… alas…

I’m not.

But I do try to do a periodic ‘de-clutter’ so as to limit distractions and ways to weasel out of actually working.

So the key is to make sure you’re within your comfort zone.  Some organization really is important.  And if you are used to working with knick knacks strewn here and there, it’s probably time to kill the habit.

While you might be unaware of it during the day to day, the more things there are on your desk, the more likely will you be distracted by it. You really can’t afford to be out of focus as an entrepreneur because this could mean a loss of money.

BAD idea.

Organize and create a system that works best for you. Have a filing cabinet near your desk for important stuff only, and another in another room or a closet so that you can file all your business and personal documents.

It’s highly unlikely you’ll have an impulse to go through last year’s tax forms when they’re out of reach.  Wait.  Scratch that.

It’s highly unlikely you’ll ever have an impulse to go through last year’s tax forms, EVER.  And if you do… well… not really sure what to say to that!  But file all that other stuff away too, because no telling what else you’ve got you’d be inclined to go through. 😉

And finally, while it may seem strange… try placing a potted plant near your desk.   The splash of color helps to relax your eyes and protect you from eye strain. Plus, plants tend to have a calming effect so if you are stressed out it’s the perfect excuse to take a break and smell the flowers…er… I mean roses.

Or heck, even an air plant can do the trick!

Now at first, you might think that setting up a nice place to work in at home seems to be pretty low on the priority list… but these tips don’t cost much and if they help to boost your productivity and focus… why wouldn’t you give it the old college try?

You might be surprised at how you’ll be more than inspired to tackle those behemoth tasks and ugly frogs you have to deal with every day.

So, homework for the day is-

Take the time to create a relaxing, organized space conducive to work.  Then drop by and let me know if it helps you out any.  In the mean time, I’ll be workin’ on my own work space.

See?  I even take my own advice!

Warm regards,

AKA k0zm0zs0ul

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