If you work from home, either full-time or even just occasionally, organizing and outfitting your home office (or tiny workspace) shouldn’t be an afterthought.
In fact, lots of research has shown that your space and desk can significantly affect your mood and productivity. Studies have shown, for example, that the type of lighting you use can make you sleepier or more alert, and how cluttered or neat your desk is can impact choices you make throughout the day—and even your creativity.
That doesn’t mean you have to go out and buy a crazy-expensive shagreen desk or hang one of those “Hang in there Baby” cat posters. Try these 11 smart, simple ways to give your home office (and work life) a mini upgrade.
1. upgrade your laptop
A fast new computer = an immediate, tangible productivity bump.
2. desktop user? invest in a new monitor
You may not need a whole new machine; a fancy new screen could do the trick.
3. bring the outdoors inside
Plants can improve air quality to help you breathe easy in stressful moments, and studies have shown just having them around can increase happiness and productivity.
4. fix your lighting
Better lamps or overhead lighting will keep you focused and alert. Choose bulbs that are brighter/bluer to help you stay on task.
5. invest in a new (smaller, cheaper printer)
Because you’re likely still using the one that came with your desktop 10 years ago.
6. get a desktop scanner
7. dress up a bulletin or dry erase board.
To-do lists won’t be as daunting if they’re fun and pretty.
8. upgrade your desk chair
Back pain is not only distracting, it can affect your long-term health.
9. add pretty (and functional) decor details
Like a bespoke hand cream, a calming lavender spritz you can spray when deadlines loom, or a few crystals that will bring some positive energy.
10. set yourself up with music
A great Bluetooth speaker is all you need to fill your space with some concentration-inducing classical music.
11. hang some motivational posters
Because sometimes all you need is a reminder that “you’ve got this” (or, that you brain needs a few tabs shut).
Have you made one home office change that really transformed your workspace? Share with me in the comments!