How To Create A Productive Home Office

Nick Durante
by Nick Durante
Credit: Shutterstock / james benjamin

More people work from home than ever before. Because of that, many people have struggled to adapt and stay focused in their home offices. You aren’t alone if you’ve ever wondered how to create a productive home office.

The best way to make a productive home office is to declutter the room. Organize your office supplies into categories so you know where to find everything quickly. Open the blinds and let sunlight into your office to boost serotonin and productivity. You can also make your space more productive and lively with some indoor plants.

Distractions are the biggest threat to working from home. That’s why it’s important to limit your phone access and reduce outside noise so you can focus. Follow along as we explore how to create a productive home office without spending a fortune.

1. Eliminate Distractions

It’s hard to be productive in your home office if you’re constantly being distracted. Everything from sounds throughout your home and a barking dog to apps on your phone can distract you. For example, if you find yourself scrolling through Instagram all day, that will bog you down.

In that case, you can either delete the app from your phone or limit how much you can use it per day. Open the app, select “Time Spent”, tap “Set Daily Time Limit, and select what’s most productive for you. If you live in a home with other people, including loud kids, you may simply need to block sound in your office.

The easiest way to do this is to put acoustic door sweeps at the base of the door. This will absorb and block sound, so your kids don’t interrupt your work call while they play tag throughout the house.

2. Reduce Clutter

There’s nothing productive about a messy desk or office. It’s hard to be productive when you’re distracted by a mess that you’ve procrastinated cleaning up. Only keep the things that you need in your home office.

For example, you likely need a computer, notebook, calendar, daily planner, and pens or pencils. However, you don’t need the empty rappers or outdated paperwork that you’ve waited too long to get rid of. Go through your desk and office each day and throw away trash.

Try not to leave paperwork and documents out in the open that you don’t need right away. Not only does this increase the chance you’ll lose them, but they will also distract you. It also helps to digitize everything you can to eliminate your paper trail and have less to clean up each day.

3. Get As Much Sunlight As Possible

Does your home office have windows? If so, open the blinds and let in as much sunlight as you can. Not only is sunlight visually appealing, but it can also boost your serotonin levels.

Healthy serotonin levels are required to maintain your mental health and boost focus. Sunlight is a great source of Vitamin D, which can boost your mood and support brain and heart health. Not only will this increase your productivity, but it will also help you meet your daily Vitamin D requirement.

This isn’t possible for all home offices, unfortunately. In that case, you can buy light therapy lamps that mimic the effects of sunlight. This can help create a productive home office, and these lamps also typically look great.

4. Decorate With Plants

While you should keep your home office as simple as possible, you can’t go wrong with some indoor plants. It’s no secret that stress can make it hard to be productive. Studies have shown that as well as being great decorations, indoor plants help reduce stress.

Anything you can do to reduce stress will help make your home office as productive as possible. Pick indoor plants that are easy to take care of, so you don’t waste any time. Indoor plants like aloe, string of pearls, and orchids don’t require much water.

You won’t spend much time watering these plants each week, and they’re quite colorful. Make sure to research the plants to figure out where you should place them. Some plants thrive near windows whereas others prefer shade.

5. Buy Reliable Headphones

Do you frequently make video calls for work in your home office? If so, then you understand how important it is to have headphones you can rely on. It doesn’t look very professional if you frequently ask people to repeat themselves on video calls.

You can avoid this if you buy nice headphones with a noise-canceling feature. AirPods are popular for home offices because they aren’t bulky and they block outside sound. You won’t have to worry about outside sounds, and you can quickly pop them in or out as needed.

6. Create A Sorting Method

The way you sort your files and work supplies greatly affects your productivity at home. There’s nothing productive about spending a lot of time figuring out where something goes. Because of that, it helps to sort things into categories, so you know where everything is.

For example, you can create a pile of daily tasks and check them off one at a time. The same principle works for files on your computer. You can also sort your belongings into a few simple categories: complete today, keep, and recycle.

At the end of the day, figure out what you must recycle, and store everything you must keep. This will ensure that you walk into a clean, organized home office the next day.

7. Set Reminders

It’s hard to complete tasks if you create a huge, intimidating list of what you must accomplish for the day. This becomes easier if you set reminders and timers for one task at a time. That way, you can complete each task quickly within an iron-clad timeframe.

You can also do this with sticky notes that you put on your desk. Put a single sticky note with one task on your desk or even your computer. Set a timer on your phone to encourage yourself to get it done quickly. Once you complete it, cross that task off and write another one on the note. Set another time, and repeat the process.

8. Keep Everything You Need Nearby

Why get up and go to another room in your house when you don’t have to? Ideally, you should keep everything you need in your office, so you don’t waste time. Do you need to print documents? If so, put a printer in your home office.

Keep your computer, copier, and scanner in your home office, so you have a distraction-free space. That said, you should still leave your office to eat and take a break every once in a while. After all, you don’t want to feel like you’re locked up in your home office.

9. Boost Your Wi-Fi Signal

There’s nothing productive about a weak Wi-Fi signal. Slow Internet speeds can make simple online tasks take much longer than they should. That’s why it’s important to make sure your office is within range of your Wi-Fi router.

If it’s not, you may simply need to move your Wi-Fi router. Otherwise, you can install Wi-Fi signal boosters throughout your home to make sure the signal reaches your office. These small devices typically cost $30 to $80 and are worth every penny.

You can also set up an extra Wi-Fi router and modem, but that’s unnecessary if your house isn’t large.

10. Protect Your Eyes

Anyone who works from home will tell you that too much time on the computer is bad for your eyes. Excessive screen time can strain your eyes, make them dry, and cause headaches. Computer and phone screens emit blue light, which can damage retinal cells and make it hard to sleep at night.

Luckily, you can protect your eyes with special glasses that block blue light. These glasses reflect the blue light, so it doesn’t strain your eyes. Standard pairs cost between $30 and $110, but prescription glasses that block blue light vary widely in cost.

Make Your Home Office As Productive As Possible

Declutter your home office and eliminate distractions like unnecessary apps to create a productive home office. You can boost productivity and reduce stress if you let sunlight in and decorate with indoor plants. Put your printer, computer, copier, scanner and all your office supplies in one room, so you don’t have to make too many trips. It’s also a great idea to sort everything in your office into categories so you can easily find it.

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Nick Durante
Nick Durante

Nick Durante is a professional writer with a primary focus on home improvement. When he is not writing about home improvement or taking on projects around the house, he likes to read and create art. He is always looking towards the newest trends in home improvement.

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