Working from home: a blessing or curse? While conducting conference calls trouserless and the incredibly short commute are certainly big pluses, distraction is always lurking. To stay focussed and keep that motivation flowing, you’ll want your home office to be a sanctuary of creative energy. With the right colours, refreshing plants, and handy accessories, you can take your work to the next level. Here are our top three tips.
Set the tone
Neutral shades, striking accents, or a fresh white look—choosing the right colours for your study can sometimes seem a bit tricky. We all have hues we like more than others, but each colour also has a different influence on our brains.
White is neutral as a base, but can look cold and uninviting. If you still want a sober colour scheme for your walls, you can always turn to coloured home accessories.
Red is associated with concentration, but it also might put you on alert—it’s practically synonymous with danger, after all. Orange has very similar effects, while also having a calming quality. Yellow, on the other hand, is cheerful and stimulates creativity, while greens are good for inner stability. Blue reduces stress and, just like yellow, gets those creative juices flowing. But beware! Rumour has it that too much blue can soothe you to sleep. At the end of the day, balance is essential whichever colour you choose.
Stuck for choice? Add some flower power: a fresh bouquet each week in different floral shades can boost your productivity and improve your mood. Once you’ve worked your way through the spectrum of the rainbow, you can choose the colours that work the best.
Cultivate your décor
Let’s return to the colour of balance: green. Indoor plants are the ideal way to breathe some life into your home office and help you maintain an atmosphere of peace and calm.
Peace lilies are the perfect office plants. In addition to their air-purifying qualities, they’re easy to look after and produce pretty blossoms. Ferns are also great green additions that keep the air clean, while also radiating health and tranquillity. Ferns with curling leaves, in particular, will add a touch of originality to your workspace.
Arecas look as if they’ve come straight from the Bornean jungle. And this exotic plant is one of the most effective when it comes to purifying that stuffy office air. It’s even easy to maintain, requiring just a dash of water and a little sunlight to keep it happy and thriving.
Maybe your air conditioning is drying out your vital oxygen supplies, or just maybe you were a panda in a previous life. Either way, bamboo is an excellent plant that will increase humidity and keep you churning out those fruitful ideas. Note: bamboo prefers a little shade to the scorching sun and loves to keep its feet wet, preferably hanging its roots into distilled water that’s changed once a week. If you’re a plant fan lacking space for some luscious greenery, botanical prints are a sure-fire way to liven up your office jungle.
Stay on the ball
As we’re all probably aware, always putting things off until tomorrow is not a sustainable business model. So if you like to work at home but are easily led astray and distracted by YouTube marathons and Reddit binges, it’s important to keep yourself focussed and your eyes on the prize. Because even though you’re at work, that temptation to put on a quick washing load or play hide and seek with your cat is sometimes overwhelming.
Luckily, we’ve got a few handy home office ideas to keep you on the straight and narrow:
- Write all your to-dos for the day on a post-it note. At the end of the day, you can enjoy the satisfying feeling of tossing it into the bin. New day, new post-it. Piece of cake.
- Try to enclose your workspace, separating it from the chaos of distractions that is your home. If you aren’t lucky enough to have a spare room, a divider is a great option.
- Sometimes we all struggle to find motivation. Our eyes wander away from our screen in search of distraction. Turning to your walls for encouragement is an effective solution.
We all need a little nudge in the right direction from time to time, but we’re all motivated by different things. If you’re not a morning person, a “rise & shine” poster could be just the ticket to kickstart you into action. Looking for a carpe diem message for the modern age? “Wake up, kick ass” is sure to do the trick. And then there are the messy ones amongst us. A “Chaos, German style” print is sure to invigorate you with a guiding sense of Ordnung. Motivational posters may not do your work for you, but they’ll certainly push you in the right direction.
Armed with these nifty tips, it’s time to grab home office life by the horns. Recline in your chair, muse upon which colours and designs will unleash your creative potential, and get inspired. And presto, your home office will become an oasis of focussed productivity.
Text: Laura Veneklaas
Translation: Nicholas Potter