7 Design Trends to Boost Your Work from Home Productivity

There are many advantages to working from home, including a flexible schedule, a comfy dress code, and a nonexistent commute. But sometimes, an atmosphere that’s too familiar can interfere with your focus and productivity. Design changes can help. Here are seven design tips and trends to make your home office a place you can focus and relax.

Influential color

Color is an influential design tool. Since light travels to your eyes in waves, it releases different sections along the way. Color is the portion of the light spectrum that you can see. Each color triggers different electrical impulses in the retina of your eyes. From there, the impulses travel to the brain, where they affect the endocrine system and influence your emotions, sleep patterns, blood pressure, and metabolism.

The colors that you should use in your home workspace depend on the qualities you want to strengthen. Blue is calming and helps you concentrate. Red is energizing, yellow is uplifting, and orange is fun. If you already have an abundance of energy, try a soft blue, a contemplative palette of violet, or a restful green.

Functional furniture

Imagine working in a room with no furniture. Soon enough, you’ll see the impact that emptiness has on performance. The furniture you want in your workspace depends on your business, but each type can affect your overall work performance.

Choose a spacious surface for work, whether it’s a desk or table, with a comfortable chair and all the materials you need close at hand. Take the time to set up your workflow: pending, in-progress, and archived should all have a designated place to minimize time waste. You might even consider using a standing desk to boost your energy level.

A versatile option like a modular sofa adds comfort to your space and lets you take a break without losing your mental focus. Physical comfort is an important part of job performance that extends beyond the basic ergonomics of keyboard and monitor positions.

Relaxing nature

Exposure to nature reduces the stress that interferes with your ability to get things done. Fight stress fatigue with beautiful surroundings that include a view of green space through your home office window. If you don’t have the option to choose a room with a view, bring nature inside with houseplants and create an indoor green space.

Strategic lighting

By now you’ve heard of the perils of blue light and circadian sleep woes. Yet blue light isn’t always a bad thing if you need to wake up and concentrate. The key to success is using it at the right time of day so that it won’t interfere with sleep.

Have multiple light sources in your workspace, some with blue light and some without. Start your day in bright, cool light, and transition to warmer light as your workday draws to a close. Use blue light filters on all your screens, or wear blue-blocking glasses, about two to three hours before you plan to sleep.

Comfortable temperature

Where’s the heat source in your workspace? This is something to consider when deciding on your room layout. You’ll also want to plan for air movement during the warmer months if your home office is upstairs in a house with no air conditioning. The ideal temperature for workplace productivity is somewhere between 72 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit, but that can depend on the type of work. Having the final say over the coziness or briskness of your office is another work at home perk.

Functional walls

If you’ve ever hung a small corkboard and run out of space to pin items, you might appreciate a cork wall. Designers often choose an accent wall and paint it a color different from the rest of the room. Your accent wall can be a place to pin ideas, notes, lists, photos, or anything else you want visible or easily accessible. If you don’t like the idea of a wall covered in pieces of paper, consider chalkboard paint instead. Stock up on some colored chalk and enjoy the vast expanse on which to write notes, lists, mind maps, or even doodles when you need a brain break.

Soothing sounds

Design is more than just visual elements. Sound is a near-constant in our environment and can make or break your home office environment. Are you working at home while others are present? Any sounds they make could interfere with your focus and take you off task. 

If possible, locate your workspace away from the main shared areas. If you don’t have enough room, invest in comfortable noise-canceling headphones for complete quiet. You can also use a cell phone app for a variety of audio options: classical instrumental music, meditation music, nature sounds, or café ambiance.

When you work from home, it’s hard to tell where your work life ends and your home life begins. This is when effective design strategies help to carve out a customized space tailored to your preferences. With the right personalization, that space can be more than just productive—it can be inspiring too.


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