About a year ago, I decided I’d had enough of working constantly in my kitchen.
Sure, at first, it was great, and rather liberating having spent fifteen years working in the confines of an office, but after a while I began to tire of being in the same room practically all day.
You see, when you work in your kitchen, you never really leave work – it’s always there.
Instead, I decided to convert my un-used garage into an office for my business, and my focus from the start was on creating a space that was tuned for maximum productivity.
Here’s how I did just that.
I treated it like a proper office
One of my main aims with my garage office was to not treat it like ‘just another’ room in the house. This was for my business, after all, therefore it needed to feel like a business.
I wanted to create a space in which I could implement common small business productivity strategies – not just a room where I could set up a desk, computer and white board.
The design, therefore, has been entirely business-like from the start, so that when I enter the office it feels like work. And this has the added bonus of feeling like I’m leaving work whenever I shut the door at the end of the day!
It’s very minimal
Walk into my office, and you’ll probably be struck by how little there is in it. Save for a couple of desks, a filing cabinet and some storage units, that’s it.
I despise clutter, not because I hate tripping over things, but because it makes me unproductive.
With less stuff to stare at, move or fiddle with, I can concentrate on the task of rattling through my to-do list.
I’ve added a splash of green
I’m not much of a gardener, nor do I have a detailed knowledge of houseplant varieties, but I do know that by adding a bit of greenery to an office, you can make it a far nicer place to be.
I haven’t gone mad – just a couple of Yukka plants is all I felt it needed, but it has landed an inspirational, airy quality to the room that really has helped me get stuff done.
The window is huge
I’m lucky enough to have been able to choose a pretty huge window for the office, which throws in tonnes of natural light.
In fact, lighting was right at the top of my list, and along with all of that lovely light produced during the day by the window, I have an abundance of overhead dimmable spotlights to ensure I can set the mood just right if I find myself working until late.
I’ve got two desks
Early on in the design stage of the office, I decided I wanted two desks. And that’s not because there was going to be more than one person working in there – nope, these two desks were for me.
One is standard sitting height, while the other is designed purely for standing. A change of scenery every once in a while is vital if you’re to be productive, but so too is getting off your backside and standing for a while.
Try it – my standing desk really has made the world of difference to the way I work.
If you’re considering converting a room in your house into a proper office, the best parting advice I can offer is to treat it as that – purely an office.
You’re lucky enough to be working from home, but that doesn’t mean working within a homely environment will do wonders for your productivity. As I’ve found, having a proper office just a few steps away from my living room has helped me achieve more in a day than I ever thought possible.