Building A Home Office Oasis: Five Steps For The Perfect At-Home Work Space

Three words that aren’t commonly found together in the same sentence: home, office, and oasis. But in life’s ever-changing eras, people find reprieve in different places. For early stage executives burning the midnight oil, peace could be found on a busy city commute. For new parents, it might be the sweet silence of nap time.

During the COVID-19 era, having an inviting home office has never been more important. After months of stay-in-place, many employers and employees have found new and innovative ways to keep operations in motion while working remotely. But as social distancing stretches on, there are new priorities: keeping spirits up, making the home office enjoyable.

A great home office is welcoming, encouraging, and energizing. Below are five concrete ways to achieve a work from home space that exceeds functionality and ventures into the oasis category.

Differentiate, Differentiate, Differentiate

Begin here. An at home office space needs to be differentiated from the rest of the living quarters in some concrete way. The “office” need not be an office at all — it can be a seat at a kitchen table, a window-laden living room corner, or the other side of the bed. But when the work day begins, there needs to be a shift in environment, a way to understand a working space as different from a living space.

This can be completely representative in nature — a self-imposed dress code, the lighting of a candle, or a little sign on the door letting other family members know not to disturb. The task is to clearly demarcate “office” space; the method is less important.

The Power of Light

Many employees are realizing the parts of the modern office building that are easily taken for granted. A popular item on that list is big office windows. While that might be outside of a home office project, it’s beneficial to seek out the areas of a home that do receive a good amount of natural light. Putting some thought into the lighting of the room can make the space feel larger and fresher for longer in the day.

Aside from its aesthetic importance, light has a huge impact on a person’s mental performance. Poor lighting can lead to chronic headaches, disrupted sleep patterns, and pesky eye strain. To avoid these kinds of effects, consider the set up of electronics. A screen should not be the brightest light in the room, and it’s best if it’s backlit by another source, like a window or a lamp.

Make Your Investments Early

In traditional work environments, employers invest in high end furniture for a multitude of reasons. It fosters employee health and boosts productivity. It helps people think better, and better enjoy their time.

It’s important that people working from home reflect this same commitment to comfort. An at home office chair is no place to cut financial corners. Hang a diploma in a solid wooden frame.

Consider adding a couch or investing in new wall art. Choose a couple pieces that bring joy, comfort, and peace of mind to an at-home 9 to 5.

Consider Ergonomics

When it comes to work day endurance, an ergonomic set up makes all the difference. Desks at the right height, monitors that don’t strain your eyes, and a chair that promotes good posture and augments any chronic pains are crucial elements to enjoying a day at home in the office. This kind of engineering takes thought and time, but for employees logging long hours, there’s really no other choice. A creaky chair, a too-small desk, a screen that strains your eyes; the mental wear is greater than the sum of its parts.

Often neglected is the small but mighty footrest, a crucial part of any ergonomic set up. Properly positioned and sized, a foot rest offers firm support to offset seated load, relieve leg pain, and reduce fatigue. ErgoFoam is the current ergonomic industry leader, and they’re Under Desk Foot Rest was named the most comfortable and supportive foot rest of 2020 by The New York Times.

Flipped over, the rest becomes a rocker, offering people a way to infuse some movement and circulation in their Zoom meetings.

Each product comes with a lifetime warranty, should working from home become a new kind of normal.

Unplug, But Unplug Properly

In the same way it matters that the space is differentiated, the hours of the working day deserve similar demarcation. For some people, work ends at six o’clock.. For others, it’s the completion of a project, and for self-employed people the lines can get blurry. But when the work day does come to an end, it’s important to mentally unplug.

In close home quarters, the state in which the home office space is left is all the more important. Decluttering at the day’s end pays amazing mental dividends. The gift of finding a clean space in the light of the next morning is a particularly kind one during this trying time. Collect the remnants of the day, reflect, and leave behind a joyful space in which to tackle the tasks and challenges that a new day brings.


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