Working from home offers several advantages that range from work flexibility and convenience to increased remote working productivity. However, the truth is, none of the numerous benefits is a given. If you are thinking about working from home, you need to ensure that you put in all the necessary factors that will help enhance your work-from-home experience. One of the main ingredients of enjoying increased productivity when working from home is your ability to control stress.
Remote working from home does not necessarily keep you away from stress. According to experts, there has been a rise in stress levels among persons working from home. With the work-from-home norm and increased workload, many workers now face various challenges with their jobs, taking a significant toll on their mental health. So, if you work from home, how can you create a stress-free home office space? Here are some tips you can use.
1. Add a touch of green
It is no coincidence that most of the beautiful home office designs you see around have incorporated an indoor plant or two in the setup. It’s not only for aesthetic appeal. Plants do way more than spruce up your ambiance. Adding some indoor plants to your workspace can have a massive effect on stress levels. Plants can improve mental health while improving air quality. Adding plants to your home office design or setup can help boost resilience, improve work productivity, and make you feel more relaxed. What type of plant should you choose? Any indoor plant will do the trick. The most important thing is that it gets its required amount of light each day. The number of plants you may add to your office space will depend on the size of the plant and the amount of space you have. Plants require good care; therefore, you need to be sure that you’re ready for the extra responsibility, which shouldn’t be much of a problem.
2. Add stress-relieving elements to your setup for remote working
One advantage of working from home is that you get to choose what works for you, from what you wear for the day to how you design your space. For example, if you love soaking in music while working, go ahead and rock your headphones. If you find that some degree of distraction will keep you alert, then by all means. The most important thing here is to use what works for you, and you have to try a few things first to find what works for you.
You can decorate your space with inspirational quotes and display meaningful pieces to get you in the work mode or even drape your walls in your favorite color.
You can add an open shelf to your home office set up and display your favorite books, art pieces, and decor. Focus on meaningful artwork or collections that carry a special meaning to you. It can be anything from a piece of sculpture work to photographs of the special people in your life that make you smile and bring you joy. Besides helping to inspire you, such pieces also add a touch of luster to your aesthetics.
3. Add other natural elements
Besides adding indoor plants, as mentioned earlier, your home office space could also use the right amount of other natural elements like sunlight and air. It would be beneficial to place your home office around a wide window. This allows you to enjoy enough sunlight and a fresh breeze while you work.
Using artificial lights throughout the day while work increases your electric bills drastically. It also has adverse effects on your health. While visible and IR radiation from artificial lights are unlikely to affect your health, they can cause some harm when the light is too intense or you use it at a very close range for too long. So, when planning your home office space, be sure to give yourself access to some natural light.
Getting some fresh air also offers several benefits to the human body. It is good for the digestive system, improves blood pressure, strengthens the immune system, clears the lungs, creates a sharper mind, gives more energy, and generally makes you feel happier. So, if the weather is perfect outside, allow some natural breeze inside. If you need to rely on artificial options like air conditioning or ceiling fans, be sure they are in good condition. Clean your ceiling fans often or even take advantage of a home warranty to protect your ventilation systems and ensure they are serviced and maintained properly to give you the peace of mind you need to concentrate on your remote working.
4. Create boundaries between your home and your office space
Yes, it’s easy to work up, sit on your bed, and get some work done. But it’s also pretty easy to roll right back to sleep when sitting on your bed. Finding a spot solo dedicated to work helps a lot, but how does it reduce stress?
Separating your workspace from your home space keeps you less distracted from other things at home – the kids running up to you every second, the sound of the television, etc.
Distractions can make it difficult to stay concentrated on your work. That means you’re more likely to make mistakes, miss deadlines, and so on. These will lead to a drop in your work quality and productivity, and the extra efforts required to make up for them can quickly cause your stress levels to rise.
5. Use technological solutions
From your computer to your software options, using tech solutions that are old and slow can be very irritating. If your computer is super slow and your browser takes several minutes to load a web page or gives you numerous error feedback, you can easily get impatient and even angry. This is especially true if you work with deadlines, sending your stress levels shooting through the roof.
To avoid this, always ensure that your gadgets, devices, and other tech solutions are efficient. If your computer is too slow, you might want to scan your drive for viruses, clear some space, or update your security features. Also, ensure that the software solutions you use are all up-to-date to make your work easier.
6. Get rid of clutter
Believe it or not, a cluttered workspace creates a cluttered mind, which can affect your ability to gather your thoughts properly when working. Therefore, you should try to minimize the number of things you allow on your work desk or near you. A good option is to take advantage of space-saving tech solutions like cloud storage and external memory drive to reduce the amount of paper storage.
If you can’t avoid paperwork, opt for plastic drawers to arrange your files and have a spot for those small items that can easily cause clutter.
7. Add a standing desk
If you spend countless hours sitting behind your desk, switching to a standing desk can offer a relaxing break. This is especially important if you’re working with deadlines and cannot afford to take too many breaks to stretch your legs.
When you regularly switch to a standing desk, you can help reduce blood sugar spikes, alleviate neck and back pain, improve your heart health, and boost your mechanism. All these will help ensure that you keep stress in check, as a standing desk can also directly impact your mental health. Some ongoing research also suggests that using a standing desk often can help reduce the risk of anxiety and even depression. Also, a study suggested that 87% of people who switched to standing desks reported an increase in energy during working hours.