Working in a small home office space can be tricky. It’s very easy to get distracted, and the division between ‘working hard’ and ‘hardly working’ seems to get slimmer and slimmer with each minute.
Having a plan for action from the moment you sit at your desk is crucial for your productivity and peace of mind.
Here are five top tricks to optimise your small office space and boost the quality and quantity of job tasks on your checklist:
- Declutter: It sounds very simple, but studies have found that decluttering your home office space not only reduces anxiety but will also boost your confidence, efficiency, and energy levels. Bonus points if you find forgotten treasures, whether it be money or a chocolate bar, along the way.
- Mix n’ Match: Try rearranging your materials, so they are within arm’s reach. If you’re as lazy or as easily distracted as I am, you’ll find that you can get more tasks done if the resources you need are close by. Similarly, see if you can discretely position your shelves or boxes etc. in a way that makes things more accessible (e.g. not blocking power points, no tripping hazards etc.). Or better yet, invest in some multi-purpose compactable furniture: think origami meets IKEA.
- Decorating time: A change in décor can help increase your motivation. Adding blues, greens, or other cool colours to your surrounding walls promotes a relaxing atmosphere. Don’t have heaps of desk room? Try hanging up shelves, pinboards, chalkboards, or maybe even mini-whiteboards on the walls too. That way, you have enough room for your keyboard/ books/ paperwork and a to-do list for the day, week, and months to come without the vital stuff being hidden beneath everything. Don’t forget to add on cute pictures of your family, pets, friends, or holiday dreams to keep you motivated.
- Go wireless: Wherever you can, try to replace resources that use wires with cordless or Bluetooth connections to minimise tangles and mess. For example, instead of earphones, try using headphones or air pods. Replace an annoying corded mouse with one that uses a USB connection. Other simple tricks like charging your phone overnight can be helpful, so it’s fully powered for when you’re at work. While we’re on the subject, try going paperless too. Using online storage and filing systems like the Cloud or Dropbox are a great way to save the environment and extend your small office area.
- Comfort: If you’re stuck in the same spot for an hour (let alone 8), you’ve got to take care of your mind and body. For the energy bunnies reading this, really put the work into workout. Try using a gym ball as your office chair—at least then you’ll get a tiny bit of exercise while you concentrate on the tasks at hand. Or better yet, try using a standing desk, so you have more legroom or space underneath to keep your circulation flowing.
There are heaps of things you can do to make the most out of even the smallest working space. All you need to do your best work is put on your creative hat and get to it.