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design a home office

Source: Mikolette / Getty

Many people already knew before the stay-at-home order how difficult it can be to work from home. They also knew how great it can be! It has its pros and cons. The isolation of it can cause depression for some, while others may prefer the solitude. It’s much harder to get your family or housemates to leave you alone when you’re working at home than when you’re working at the office. On the other hand, it’s quite nice to get to spend more time with them, as you can take your lunch break with them, and see them the second you finish work, rather than wait through the commute home. Whichever side you’re on—love working from home or resent it—one thing is for certain: the home office is almost never as productive and professional as the real office in a commercial space.


Your home office likely wasn’t designed to be that—an office. Maybe it was once a nursery or a guest room or the home gym or the arts and crafts room. Commercial spaces are typically designed, from their conception, to cater to the needs of a business and working professionals. It just has that feel when you walk in, and there are lots of little details that you may not even notice are there to help you focus.


Fortunately, there are some things you can do to your home office to make it feel a bit more like a commercial space—perhaps like the office you currently miss, as you’re only temporarily working from home during COVID-19. Or like the ones you’ve always admired, even if you permanently work from home. Here are ways to make your home office feel like a real office.


design a home office

Source: Hannah Yelverton / Getty

Have an office mailbox

When you bring in the mail for the home, separate out the mail that’s specifically for your business, and add it to a mail organizer in your office. It’ll help you stay on task to open this mail in your office, with the door closed, than out in the kitchen or living room where others can distract you. It also puts the mail near other things you may need to address it, like documents in your office.

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