Set up a mobile or portable home office
Is the only available work space in your house the dining table? Don’t despair . Here are some ideas that show you just how easy working from home can be - and it can be packed away in minutes!
Making it work
Want to work from home but don’t have a spare room in which you can set up the office you would really like? Well, it’s amazing how you can make even the most unlikely spaces work if you put your mind to it. In many households, the dining table seems to have a bit of a magnetic attraction for everyone in the family. From eating meals to doing homework, it’s one of the most used pieces of furniture in our homes. But, if you’re organised, it can also work very well for you as a simple office space.
At the end of your working day, you must be able to clear the table quickly and easily. The best way to do this is to streamline the amount of equipment you need, so it can all fit neatly into a storage box, such as a long storage ottoman, decorative blanket box, or an armoire.
An office in a box?
No, we’re not joking. You thought the lack of a spare room would make your plans to work from home impossible, but with some clever planning an office in a box can easily be achieved.
From stationery cupboards to filing systems and computer equipment, everything a modern office provides can be replicated. So, don’t put off those plans to start a small business or work one or two days a week from home so you can pick up the kids from school – this box of tricks is the answer. But remember: the golden rule for success is to keep a clear line between business and personal life, so make sure you pack up the box at the end of each day.
Sometimes the old-fashioned way is still the best. Receipts, bank statements and letters can be filed away easily in a concertina file. Storage boxes in pretty colours are another essential, as it’s important to keep your table as clutter-free as possible. Use them to store computer discs and other things you don’t always need.
A beautiful space always makes it easier for you to sit down and start work. Invest in one or two stylish desk accessories, such as a lovely glass paperweight, or simply arrange a bunch of fresh flowers in a vase. Colour is also important. Choose your favourite bright shades for notebooks and boxes – you’ll be surprised how much you achieve each day!
Did you know?
The figures for those setting up a home office are expected to rise rapidly, as many experts predict that with rising petrol prices, the number of telecommuting workers will increase over the next couple of years. When working from home, it’s important to stick to a work routine to achieve your daily goals – but you’re already ahead when you take into account the time you used to spend travelling to and from the office.
Being able to work from home allows you freedom and independence. We’ve come up with tips and ideas to help you to create the ideal home office.
It’s important that work spaces are happy, productive areas. If you’re a believer in Feng Shui principles, it could be a good idea to order and decorate your home office accordingly. Colour can have an impact on how you feel in your space – helpful office colours include yellow, which brings creativity and vitality; red, to help invigorate you; and purple, the colour of richness and transformation. Fresh flowers or plants will bring energy to a room, as well as promoting growth in your career.
Mediballs are great space savers and good for your posture over relatively short periods of time. For longer sessions, make sure you choose an adjustable, supportive chair to prevent back pain and repetitive stress injuries. Your feet should be flat on the floor, with hips slightly higher than knees, and back straight. Your desktop should also be at the right height, with your elbows slightly above your wrists when typing.
A home office will often be required to meet a range of needs - from the kids' collage projects to your own spreadsheets. Try to make the space accessible to everyone, with an adjustable chair, a range of stationery and different files and folders for every member of the family.
The position of your computer is also very important. Most monitors are positioned too low for their users, causing neck and shoulder problems. Your eyes should be level with the top third of the screen, so pile up phone books or, better yet, buy a monitor raiser. If you have a laptop, attach a full-sized keyboard and mouse to ease the strain on your wrists. And go for a soothing landscape or seascape screen saver.