Former office dwellers – now that you are working from home, are you still working from your couch?
It’s ok. I’m not here to shame you – even I do it from time to time.
But, I find it SO MUCH EASIER to get things done if I have a designated space to work in. For me, finding the balance is creating a space that is inviting to use but encourages productivity.
Prior to moving to work on my business full time, I was working in HR in a field based role and got to work from home 3-4 days a week. The flexibility removed my commute most days and allowed me to go crazy on the home office supplies.
In hindsight, I am SO glad I did. So here are the things in my home office (and a few things off my wish list) that make working from home easier. If you don’t want to spend your own money on these, I highly recommend asking your employer to buy items for your work from home set up due to COVID – I know a lot of companies are opting in to helping their employees stay safe and prevent injuries while working from home.
*The links included in this post are Amazon affiliate links.
Home Office Desk & Comfortable Chair
One of the joys of working from home is that you are no longer chained to your desk. I still highly recommend getting one (and a comfy chair while you’re at it). If you have the space I also recommend putting the desk in a space where you have a little privacy from the other occupants of your home.
Since we are not chained to our desks, I like to use mine for when I need to focus and get things done! If I’m working on something a little more creative or playful, you are more likely to find me on the couch or on my patio working.
When it comes to desk decor I like to keep the table top fairly empty because clutter stresses me out but if you like to have trinkets on your desk in the office I recommend doing it at home. Include whatever helps you feel like you’re in the zone and ready to conquer your goals.
Once you’ve picked your desk invest in a comfy and adjustable chair. I am a very short human; because of this I avoid desk chairs with arm rests (they never line up for me correctly and I usually just bang them into the desk). I know the gaming world has some very comfortable chairs if you are willing to invest (link to one above). If not, take a look at the armless chair I use below.
Home Office External Monitor/ Keyboard/ Mouse/ Computer Stand for Laptop
Do you love your body? Do you want to protect your neck, back and wrists? Buy (or ask your company to buy you) an additional monitor with an ergonomic keyboard and mouse.
I’m going to go all HR on you for a second – ERGONOMICS ARE SO IMPORTANT! If you are going to be sitting in the same spot for hours on end make sure you find a setup that is comfortable AND protects your body.
Including a link to ergonomic resources here but the basics are that you want to make sure the TOP of your screen is eye level. So if you cannot buy an external monitor at least ask for a laptop stand for your computer.
I also highly recommend taking breaks, looking away from your screens often and stretching. I’m dropping a Yoga with Adriene suggestion here for you to do on your next break!
Office Supplies (paper, pens, sticky notes, notebooks)
When it comes to taking notes I’m a pen on paper kind of gal. I find it easier to remember information if I take the time to write it out instead of typing it. I also like to leave myself reminders with sticky notes and doodle on scratch paper when I’m ideating.
Imagine my surprise when I first transitioned to working remotely and realized I only had one pen and no scratch paper on me. It didn’t occur to me that working from home meant I wouldn’t have access to my beloved supply closet with my favorite notepads and pens.
Now, I stock those for myself. I’m a big fan of these pens (they write so smoothly), colorful sticky notes and I bulk bought notebooks so I will never run out of paper again.
If you’re a Pinterest aesthetic kind of person you can have a lot of fun in this realm and purchase matching items to make your desk feel inviting! Some shopping ideas below but it’s all up to you.
This is a personal favorite for me – my Panda Planner. I prefer using planners where I can write the dates in and this one gives the owner complete control. Planners like this are amazing because if you stop using them for a while it doesn’t matter! You can just pick it back up and write in the date.
It comes with three sections – month, week and day. What I love about this is I can set reasonable goals for the month, break them down each week in the planner and then throw the daily to do’s in as I go. I also like to combine days onto one page if I think there won’t be a lot going on.
Added bonus – in the daily section there is room to put your three things you’re grateful for (follow me on insta to see mine everyday) and three things you are excited about for the day. At the end of the day you get to list your wins and if there is anything you want to improve on going forward.
I love this planner and it is so much cheaper than similar ones I’ve had shared with me. 10/10 recommend.
Last but not least I implore you to buy a wall calendar. Without this thing I would never know what day it is. I still use my planner for day to day stuff but the wall calendar lets me zoom out to only the important things. Dr apts, birthdays, vacations (lol), and big picture goals. The one I use has space to write out your monthly goals, reminders, notes and big picture to do’s. I like to use it to remind myself of what I accomplished the previous month and what I want to do next to reach my goals.
I hope this helps you stock up that work from home set up! My golden rule is to make sure your workspace allows for comfort, focus and motivates you to want to work.
If you’re struggling with your work from home scheduling or want some help determining where you want to go next in your career email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the coaching tab for more information. Want to make your goals your reality? Let’s make a plan to set you up for success!