The Covid-19 pandemic reshaped the working employment of millions around the globe, forcing many to work from home for the first time.
Now, long after the end of lockdowns and the relaxing of restrictions, many people around the UK are still working entirely from home or are following a hybrid work schedule.
In fact, the Guardian reports that in a survey of UK adults, 40% had worked from home at some point in the previous seven days, compared to just 12% in 2019.
As remote technology has continued to advance, it looks like the “work from home revolution” is here to stay for the foreseeable future.
Given this, here are seven practical ways you can adapt your property to make home working more efficient and productive. Some tips may help you improve your health while you’re working from home, too.
1. Consider a garden office
Constructing a purpose-built garden office could be a practical way to be more efficient and productive.
Working in a dedicated garden office could help:
- Reduce stress since you’re working in a comfortable environment
- Limit the number of distractions that may come from your family
- Improve your work-life balance since your working area is away from your living space.
Better yet, a garden office could even boost the value of your home. Indeed, Unbiased reveals that it could add between 5% and 10% to the value of your property.
2. Invest in a comfortable office chair
A comfy office chair is essential when you’re working from home, as it can prevent back strain, fatigue, and overall discomfort.
Better yet, an ergonomic chair with the proper lumbar support could even “activate your body”, as the chair can help you subconsciously move to a healthier posture.
Ultimately, a proper office chair can go as far as improving your overall productivity since you’re working in comfort, and the health benefits are often worth the extra costs.
3. Ensure your workspace is adequately lit
Proper lighting is also crucial when you’re working from home. Not only can a well-lit room help you see what you’re doing, but it can also boost your energy and mood naturally, two key components to a productive day.
If you can, you should encourage natural light as much as possible. If this isn’t possible due to space constraints, it’s worth investing in various lights around the room to brighten your working space.
It’s also wise to avoid working directly under overhead lights, as the glare can often be distracting. Instead, consider spacing ambient lights around your room, and perhaps stick to LED lights as they can help maintain productivity without being too harsh on your eyes.
4. Consider upgrading your broadband
Perhaps nothing is more frustrating than trying to work from home while your broadband is slow, especially when you have important online meetings to attend.
As such, you may want to consider shopping around for new broadband deals and upgrading if needed. Standard broadband deals may give speeds of around 8 to 11Mbps, which is more than enough for a small household.
Though, if you’re working and your family is also using the internet, an upgrade to a superfast package – typically around 35 to 70Mbps – may be ideal.
Not only could faster broadband help boost your productivity, but the additional speed could help reduce your stress levels. Also, you may even find a more cost-effective deal by shopping around, helping you save money in the long run.
5. Ensure you have the proper hardware
It’s also important to equip yourself with all the necessary types of hardware to ensure you can work efficiently from home. This includes:
- Your computer or laptop
- Any additional monitors you may need
- A headset and a webcam, perhaps the more expensive options to ensure your audio and video are crisp and clear in meetings.
Moreover, depending on your needs, it may be worth considering purchasing a printer and scanner. While the cheaper options work well, a pricier variant could be more suitable if you wish to print out higher-quality documents.
If you’re adequately prepared for working from home with all the necessary hardware, this could ensure that your day runs as smoothly as possible.
6. Consider a standing desk and an under-desk treadmill
Standing desks have become increasingly popular in recent years due to their numerous health benefits. Indeed, they can:
- Help you burn calories
- Improve your posture
- Reduce back pain
- Improve your wrist position, potentially alleviating symptoms of carpal tunnel.
On top of this, you may want to consider an under-desk exercise machine, such as a treadmill or a bike. These allow you to exercise while you’re working, helping reduce any spikes in blood pressure by providing a steady flow of low-impact exercise.
7. Try adding some greenery to your home office
When you’re designing your office space, it’s also worth considering introducing some lush greenery. This can add vibrant colours to your home office and even oxygenate your space, reducing fatigue and headaches.
It may be wise to opt for low-maintenance plants when deciding what to include so you’re not distracted by their care. There may even be limited light in your home office, which could kill off more needy plants. Some low-maintenance plants could include:
- Pothos (sometimes referred to as “money plant”)
- Snake plants
- Bird’s nest ferns
- Peace lilies.
Or, you could include a more practical plant in your office space, such as aloe vera. Alongside its aesthetic benefits, you could harvest the leaves from mature plants to help with skin blemishes or spots!
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