Whether you work from home or just need a private place to keep your bills and calendars organized, you deserve to have a designated and comfortable office space in your home. Your space should serve you, not the other way around. Here are four tips to help you create your own charming but practical home office.
Location, Location, Location
If you are lucky enough to have an extra room in your house, grab it and use it for an office. If you don’t choose a place that will have few distractions. Most mothers have to multitask, but interruptions can lead to poor work product. Your bedroom may be a better place to put your desk, for example, than a corner of the busy living room. Unless you like tight spaces and little light, it is not a good idea to cram a desk and filing space under the stairway, in a closet, or in the basement. Even if the corner you choose isn’t ideal, with a little paint, a splash of color, and a few accessories it should work just fine.
If you don’t require much desk space or don’t have much room to work with, there are many small comfortable desks out there. You can use a filing cabinet for all your paperwork. The most important piece of furniture is your chair. Whether you choose an office model with wheels or a regular chair, make sure that it is comfortable and ergonomically correct. While the current trend is to have your “office” blend in with the rest of your home, an uncomfortable chair can lead to back, shoulder, and neck pain.
Set Up Your Hardware
When setting up your electronic equipment make sure that you have access to drives and ports. Tame the jungle of cords with cord winders, tubing, a wire organizer, or twist ties and then attach to the desk to keep cords off the floor. Use one power strip and make it accessible in case you need to move cords. You can attach paper clips to your desk and use them to hold the ends of charger cords to keep them off the ground.
Position your equipment based on usage. If you use your printer a lot, place it on a low shelf. If you don’t use your fax machine or other piece of equipment much and space is limited, consider placing it in a closet or another room to use as needed.
Organize Your Space
Using vertical space efficiently is key to making a small office work. Invest in floating shelves, which are easy to hang, to get your papers off your desk. Use a file folder divider to keep important papers within easy reach. If you have room, a wood or metal cube shelf is an alternative to a filing cabinet or bookshelves.
If your desk has drawers, get some adjustable drawer organizers so you can store paper clips, pens, post its, binder clips, and rubber bands in their own cubbies.
Your office space does not need to be sterile. Hang some favorite photographs and pictures that motivate you.
What are your best home office organizing tips?