Working from home presents many challenges that those accustomed to working in a physical office might not be aware of. This is especially true when you have small children at home. Follow these five tips to create a home office that actually encourages productivity.

Choose Your Office Space Carefully

The room you choose to convert into your home office will affect your productivity level significantly. Be sure to choose a room that is separate from your primary living space, but not too far from needed amenities. Otherwise, you are going to be faced with distractions such as cleaning, organizing, or even relaxing on the couch. Having a separate place for work within the home can also give you the daily structure required for a productive workday.

Focus on Comfort

It is important to have elements of comfort throughout your home office. Place nice-smelling plants in the room to give you a breath of fresh air. Colorful plants can also serve as relaxing visual items during work breaks.

Another important comfort feature to keep in mind is the temperature of your home. If your office is too far from the thermostat, it could result in a room that is too stuffy in the summer and too cold during the winter. Improving your home’s air ventilation can provide you with a more consistent and comfortable temperature.

Incorporate Child-Friendly Elements

Some days it might seem impossible to entertain the children when you are stuck in your office all day. Incorporating child-friendly elements into your home office can help you keep an eye on them while still getting important work done. Set up a smaller desk where your children can tackle homework assignments. Create a small reading nook with a large collection of books.

Implement the Red, Green, and Yellow Method

If your children and even your spouse do not give you the space you need to be productive, consider using the red, green, and yellow work method. Some work tasks require more concentration, while others are great for multitasking. Change out the signs on your office door based on the type of task you are working on.

If you are free for questions or conversation, use the green sign. A yellow sign means you are available for quick questions with minimal noise. A red light, however, indicates that you need quiet and should not be disturbed unless absolutely necessary.

Be Strict About Organization

A messy office is not very productive. You waste valuable time looking for important documents or office supplies. Instead of spending hours organizing your office every week, plan to spend the last 10 minutes of your workday picking up and organizing paperwork. You will find that you are able to start with a more productive pattern the next morning.

There are many advantages to working at home. However, working remotely also requires the necessary planning and preparation to be productive. These five home office tips can help you create a space that also encourages productivity.

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