I’m thinking about my home office. It’s a place I’ve worked for 20 years – 11 in our current home. And very little has changed - and that it's time for a bit of a make-over.
My home office furniture is fine, I reckon. I work from the same custom desk I’ve had for 15 years. Ergonomically designed with a wire chase, deep drawers and computer enclosures, it continues to serve me well. My ergonomic chair suits my body well, too. So no change needed there.
But the same art, photographs and kids’ crafts hang on the same white walls. Same scratched-and-dented file cabinet and hand-built closet storage master my stuff.
Frankly, it’s all getting kinda old. And my psyche is begging for something new.
Time for a make-over?
The make-over often is an under-rated way to re-energize the home office. A newly designed or outfitted space gives a new view on work and a new lease on work/life. If you’re a teleworker who works from home for a boss somewhere else, re-doing your existing home office can help it suit your transplanted corporate self.
And if you’ve been newly laid off and are looking to start a home-based business, a home office make-over can help you start on a fresh path with a fresh perspective.
I recall as a youth I would “redesign” my bedroom once – maybe twice – a year. I’d shove my bed, dresser and desk across our terrazzo floors and come up with a whole new look.
I promised myself a make-over a few months ago. I never followed through in any grand fashion, but what often gets people tied up in knots is the perceived persistent details of a prolonged project.
“Home-office make-over” isn’t some euphemism for “costly.” With a little insights and less than a couple hundred dollars, I (you) can renew the passion and vigor the home office once delivered.
In my case, I started small. I launched my project with a new portable shelving unit to provide a home for the stuff that had a de facto home on my floor. And I continually go through that stuff to de-clutter my space (using my Fellowes shredder to mince sensitive docs).
A new coat of paint will turn bland and old into lively and fresh. Even the smell of fresh paint (which can linger for weeks) subtly says, “Newness.” Another scent to add to the space is that of candles. I’ve gotten into lighting scented candles (I like vanilla) in the home. This gives it an aroma all its own. Besides, scent has this way of inspiring other senses.
Visual is important. How about new blinds to give the space a new look? Blinds also curtail glare across the computer screen. I also put up shades behind the blinds to cut the afternoon heat.
I re-arrange the art on the walls – remove some of the old art (and hope the kids don’t notice their crafts have been removed), and place some new art in its stead. Then, get funky. I was watching a video of social media expert and speaker Joel Comm on YouTube, and he pointed to a lava lamp in his office. Far out, man.
Sometimes, offices that haven’t been redesigned or tweaked in years need some freshening up. A coat of paint, some scented candles, new shades – or even a lava lamp – can inspire the senses and reinvigorate the spirit.