If you have an extra room, closet or loft space that you're unsure how to utilize, consider making the most out of this area by creating a home office. Whether you're in school or years into your career, you'll want to have a space in your apartment where you can accomplish a variety of tasks. Of course, everyone works differently, and some may be prone to working in coffeehouses or at the library. However, remember that these workspaces won't always be open, and sometimes you'll likely want to get things done in the comfort of your own home. Here are five tips to creating a fantastic home office:
1. Make it homely
Your home office can easily be designed to complement the rest of the rooms in your living space, but remember that if you're going to spend long hours in your office it should feel like home. Make sure you have a chair in which you can comfortably focus on projects, as well as other furniture and knickknacks so that you can be relaxed. Consider positioning your desk by a window so that you can look outside, or if a window is not available hang pictures so that you have something to look at besides the wall.
2. Organize your tech
Don't just throw your laptop, printer, speakers and other tech on your desk and then just plug it all into a power strip. Consider that all of the cords will not only look aesthetically unpleasing, but also potentially get in your way. Organize your desk and technology in a way that minimizes the presence of cords. You can use tape to keep cords flush against the floor, wall or furniture so that they remain hidden. If you have a laptop or tablet that you take on the go, set up the connectors for your printer, speakers and other additional tech so that they can easily be plugged in when you set up your device at your desk.
3. Invest in a snack station
It's easy to get distracted when you get hungry, but walking back and forth to the kitchen can also take away energy from the task at hand. Repurpose a bar cart or end table to serve as your snack and drink station. Load up this area with healthy, dry goods such as trail mix to help you stay focused. A bar cart is also a great place to stock a coffee maker or tea pot along with a few of your favorite blends. If you want to kick it "Mad Men" style, include a decanter of bourbon or your other favorite spirit.
4. Ensure there is proper lighting
Whether you're a night owl or work best in the bright morning sun, it's imperative to have proper lighting while you work at home. If you've sandwiched your home office into an area without windows or good overhead lighting, such as a closet, invest in a quality desk lamp so that you won't strain your eyes while you're working. Opt for a lamp that can be easily resituated depending on your lighting needs.
5. Give yourself enough space
Don't try to pile everything into a corner and hope for the best. If you're not comfortable in your office, odds are you'll end up relocating to another location. Furthermore, consider in which area of your apartment you'll be most productive. If you plant your desk next to the television, it might prove to be too much of a distraction, and if you have roommates who share your apartment you'll want to make sure you have enough privacy.