Have you ever walked into your home office for a specific task and instead wound up looking through 3 piles of junk mail, and an enormous mound of paperwork on your desk? With more and more home owners taking to the internet and family members of all ages are becoming more computer savvy, the home office has lost its productive edge. If you want to reclaim back your home office and find ways to maximize your productivity look at these helpful tips.

  • Use your space wisely: While you may think that your entire desk is your filing cabinet, you are cutting down your ability to work if you can’t get to specific items quickly. Whether you have a large office area or a small one, the trick is to use the space wisely. Purge all papers, files, mail, etc… that doesn’t relate to your home office work. File these items in filing cabinets, and clear off excess clutter off the top of your desk. Live by this rule “Everything needs a place” – therefore, don’t let any office items just sit around.
  • Position resources within arm’s reach: While your entire office doesn’t need to be in arm’s reach, the resources that you use multiple times a day should be. From your computer your telephone, filing area, work surface and supporting office items such as pens/pencils and simple supplies should be easily reached without having to get up and obtain from other corners of the room. Your productivity will largely be based on how effective you are to stay on task while working. The layout of your office supplies and equipment will ensure you can talk on the phone and use the computer, without hunting for the phone under piles of papers!
  • Adjust the climate in your office: While most of us only think of our desk and where office items are located we forget that the interior climate of your office will make a difference on how productive you are. Ensure that air conditioning, heat, and fresh ventilation options are always available and are not extreme, i.e. too hot/cold, air blowing directly on you, etc… Ensure that you have a source of natural light for maximum benefit – views to the outdoors will also help. If you don’t have any windows, bring in multiple sources of artificial lighting and hang inspiring wall artwork to mimic the creative outdoors.
  • Bring in your personal decorative touches: Productivity is also based on your ability to enjoy your surroundings. If you are stuck looking at a grey wall all day, you won’t be inspired or productive. Paint or wallpaper your walls with lively or soothing colors. Try to avoid bright, and ‘loud’ colors, as they will fatigue the eyes and cause you to get tired quicker when working. Use a desk and chair that you love, and visit a office supply store and buy coordinating organizers to fill your home office with style and beautiful organization.

The balancing trick of having a home office is making the environment productive, but also bringing in inspiring decorative and organizational pieces to help you enjoy working! Try to avoid bringing other parts of the home into the home office, such as baby and pet toys or video games and distracting hobbies. While these are fine in other parts of the home, in order to maximize productivity in your home office use it for its intended purpose. The better you can stick to this concept, the more you will enjoy your home office, and you may actually finish your work quicker and happier!

Freshome readers tell us about your home office? How do you maximize productivity in it?