If you have been working remotely, you know the joy of being free to choose to finish your tasks. But there is a downside to this kind of setting since not all places in your home present a conducive working environment.
Having a flexible workstation entails choosing a better place than staying in your plush leather chair. It can be comfortable for a while, but since a sofa chair was not designed to provide ample support for a working position, you will find yourself sinking after a few hours. That kind of work position can spell trouble for your back and neck.
You can look around for a better area where you can set up a proper workstation or headquarters. It does not have to be big -- just enough floor area where you can assemble a mini-office.
Since flexibility is the name of the game, you can arrange your office so you can use it for other activities. For example, if you are into music, maybe you can find a way to turn your office into a recording studio during the weekends.
Starting with the basics
Before going crazy with buying things for your flexible office, you must nail the basics first. It pays to have basic items first, so you do not work backward and end up with useless office furniture.
You know the basics like having a desk, chair, and a couple of storage options. But we can dig deeper into the furniture talk later. There are plenty of options that are better than the traditional versions that we know -- and for a reason.
Getting into the heart of things
There are five tips that we can give you so you can create a flexible work-from-home space where you can ramp up your productivity.
1. Find a clean and tidy space -- Settling in a cluttered space is not the best idea since you can be distracted with a mountain of things to clean. How can you tackle your workload efficiently if your mind keeps urging you to go and clean up?
If you do not have a dedicated space for your workstation, you can roll out a tidy-up rule for yourself, your housemate, or your children. It is also a way for them to be more responsible with how they use a space, now that they know how it can impact others.
Now that can also be tricky, more so if you do not like confrontations. But it all lies in the approach. You can talk to your roommate about how to collaborate in cleaning and how it can benefit both of you, Elite Daily explained. When it comes to children, you can teach them the value of cleaning up. This NBC News article said that children who do chores are more likely to be successful in relationships, academics, and career.
2. Use ergonomic furniture -- We mentioned this a few paragraphs before. If you have been working on a makeshift office, you know it can be hard to maintain the right posture when working. A kitchen chair can be too hard and unable to support the back. A table or a chairwith the wrong height can lead to body strains.
The solution: Invest in ergonomic furniture, even the most basic ones like a sit-stand desk or a desk riser. With any of these two, you can switch from standing to sitting all day. A standing desk facilitates proper posture because you can adjust it to the height that is best for you. Ask the manufacturer about the height range of your standing desk to make sure that it helps you sit and stand at the optimal height for your body.
Another option is to buy an ergonomic chair that allows you to work comfortably.
But if you do not have the budget for new furniture, you can try these alternative moves instead:
- If a laptop is too low, stack some boxes or books. This can be a makeshift laptop stand that can be positioned at the right eye height.
- Place a pillow on your seat if the chair is too low.
- Use a rolled-up towel behind your back when sitting to provide lumbar and back support.
3. Find a place with great lighting, and if possible, with a great view -- Having great lighting in your workstation is a need as it promotes productivity. This study showed that good lighting in task areas is essential for optimizing visual performance, comfort, and ambiance, especially for the aging workforce. While the setting is primarily focused on the office, the spirit of the study posits that sufficient lighting is needed for any work area.
Natural light is the best because it can invigorate the senses. If you can work by a window with a great view, that’s good news. Put your mark there and start working on fixing your flexible work spot.
Start the flexible workstation of your dreams
Now that you know the basic elements of a flexible workspace, you can go ahead and build it anywhere. You can explore your garage, houseboat, or dining area. Having a great office will help to make remote work a more pleasant experience.