Your home office will feel cozier and help you stay productive if it’s in line with your personal style. But what is that style and how can you define it? Do you like the idea of something sleek and minimalistic, with a modern edge and plain, solid colors? Or do you prefer the idea of something older and more ornate, with antique furniture and tasteful, colorful décor?
What would make you more productive? What would make you happier?
It’s a tough decision, especially if you’re not sure what your personal style is, but there are some straightforward and reliable strategies to find it.
Shop With a Variety of Office Furniture Stores
One of your first steps should be shopping with a variety of office furniture stores, including online office furniture stores and in-person showrooms. This will give you a wide-reaching exposure to a variety of different types of furniture. You’ll see countless styles of desks, chairs, bookcases, and filing cabinets that appeal to a variety of different people. Which of these stand out to you? Are there any that you particularly love or hate? What is it about them that makes you feel this way?
Take notes here. You won’t be buying furniture just yet, but it’s a great first step to introduce you to your initial stylistic preferences.
Scope Out Different Offices
Next, consider exploring different offices and paying close attention to the elements that make them unique. For example, you can visit an office with an open floor plan and basic standing desks. Do you like the environment and the mood that this is trying to capture? You can also visit something cozier and more private, with expansive desks and private offices. Is this more your style?
Again, take notes here. What do you like and what don’t you like? How does this fit with your personality and approach to work?
Work in Different Environments
Reviewing offices as a visitor isn’t quite enough. You may feel like a certain environment would be more conducive to your personal working style, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be. You’ll get much more information – and personal experience – by working in different environments.
You don’t have to stretch yourself too thin here or work in different cities. You can work at a couple of coworking spaces, at your local library, at a couple of cafes, and even at a friend’s house to get a feel for how these environments affect your productivity and morale.
Consider Your Senses
At this point, you should have a general idea of what big-picture stylistic choices you’re going to make for your home office. Now, it’s time to get into some details. You can start by describing the type of environment you want to establish with a variety of sensory inputs.
· Sight. What do you hope to see (or not see) in your environment? Some people like to have an office with large windows and ample natural light. Others want to fill their office space with plants to make them feel like they’re working in nature. You may prefer to be surrounded with photos of your family or with impressive works of abstract art.
· Sound. Do you want to work in complete silence? If so, you may need to make some soundproofing adjustments to your home office. Otherwise, you can invest in great speakers to fill your working space with your favorite tunes.
· Scent. Did you know that certain scents may be able to boost your productivity? Filling your office space with lavender, peppermint, or another relaxing scent can help you destress and focus on your work.
Choose Your Central Furniture
Now, you’re ready to start choosing the central furniture of your home office. What kind of desk do you want and what is it going to say about your working style and personality? This is a monumental choice, and something you can build the rest of your office around, so take your time and consider your options carefully. Once you’ve defined your style, you’ll need to find the perfect centerpieces to embody it – if you can do that, the rest will come almost naturally.
Flesh Out Your Décor
With your home office starting to come together, you can work on the other points of décor in your room. What color do you want the walls to be? What kind of artwork or central eye-catching pieces do you want to have? Are you going to surround yourself with plants?
If you’ve never thought about it before, defining your home office style can be tough. But if you put in the work and do your research, you can eventually uncover a set of personal preferences that can help you boost your productivity for the rest of your career.