People have been working from home in record numbers this year due to COVID. I’ve been working remotely for a few years now, but this has been a huge adjustment for many of my friends and family. Many of us are working from home for much longer than originally anticipated and therefore starting to transition that makeshift workspace into a more permanent, functional one.
With the line between work and home now completely blurred, a dedicated space in which to work can really help you focus and be productive…when you’re not kid wrangling or facilitating remote learning, that is. Whether it’s a small corner of your dining room or a corner office, you can make it feel more comfortable by incorporating a combination of essentials and personal touches. Here are a few ideas:
- Furniture: All you need is a basic desk/table area and a supportive chair. I’m in the market for a new chair and have been eyeing several at West Elm, Amazon, and Wayfair. If you have the space for some shelving or cabinets, creative storage solutions can go a long way in keeping the area clutter-free.
- Tech: If you’re like me, you’re spending way too much time on Zoom, so investing in a better-than-average webcam can make a big difference. I also can’t live without my wireless trifecta: headphones, mouse, printer/scanner. You can even set up automatic delivery for your printer paper and ink.
- Hydration: A large mug for coffee/tea is mission-critical, as is a water bottle. I love the Yeti insulated coffee mug because it keeps my coffee warm long after I’ve forgotten about it.
- The Zoom Shirt: You know what they say, business on top! And with this spray, you’ll never need to iron again.
- Office Supplies: You can never have too many office supplies. In the past several months, I’ve purchased acrylic organizers, stand up file folders, and a mini stapler. I spend way too much time browsing poppin.
- Paper and Pens: I am a complete sucker for a good notebook and pen – there’s just something about the act of writing things down. Pre-kids, I wandered through stationery shops – such as this old favorite near my old office in NYC – trying out pens and flipping through paper planners. Muji and Moleskine both make very high-quality notebooks, with a wide range of colors, sizes, and features. I also stock up on cute post-its at the Target dollar-spot or on sale at Anthropologie.
- Extras: Blue light glasses are a top seller now due to increased screen time; a cozy lap blanket to keep you warm as the weather gets colder; a small charging/docking station for your phone and other devices; a good desk lamp for burning the midnight oil; and a whiteboard to visibly capture reminders, time zones, to-do lists, etc.
- Personal Touches: It’s important to incorporate your own style into your workspace and surround yourself with things that ground you and make you happy. These rattan globes are on my wish list, and I recently found some little succulents to keep on the shelf next to my desk. Other ideas: framed photos, artwork, a vision board, a candle, or a diffuser. Whatever makes the space feel like you.