When you tell someone you’re a freelancer working from home, they may picture you starting each day at 10:30 a.m. in your pajamas.
Even if this is true—lucky you!—it doesn’t mean you’re not cozy and productive. But it is true that your work environment can affect your creative output, and this especially applies to those of us who set our own schedule and manage our own projects.
Whether you’re putting together a home office for the first time or just rearranging it for a more inspired atmosphere, we’ve got some must-read tips to help enhance your experience as a freelancer. Also see here for Feng Shui tips for your office & life.
Keep Inspiration Close
If you often use books, art, or music to get the creativity rolling, make sure you have easy access to these elements. Place a bookshelf within arm’s reach of your desk, buy a quality speaker, or hang your favorite art pieces on the wall. Display your own work or awards to remind yourself what you are capable of when a slow or challenging day comes along.
Make it Meeting-Appropriate
Instead of wasting gas and money to meet your clients at a coffee shop, invite them to your home. This won’t disrupt the flow of your work day as much as leaving does, and it will allow your client to get a better idea of who you are—and therefore the quality of your service. Set up a proper meeting area with two or three chairs, interesting magazines or coffee table books, and nearby refreshments so that your guests won’t feel neglected.
Don’t Cut Yourself Off from the World
When you think of your home office, you probably think of a haven from the busyness of everyday life. In fact, if you had it your way, you might want soundproof walls and your own little office kitchenette and bathroom. But there’s a difference between cutting out distractions and totally isolating yourself. Working from home can be lonely, so don’t put too much distance between you and the outside world. Keep the blinds open and the fresh air coming in. Go for a walk at some point each day just to get out. This will help your ideas stay crisp and keep your back free of aches.
Incorporate Calming Colors
The color scheme you choose for your office affects your mood and therefore your productivity. You’ve probably heard that blue has a calming psychological impact, which is certainly helpful for those who are easily overcome with stress. Think about the colors that make you feel confident, but also at ease. Light and neutral colors help prevent eye fatigue, so make sure to think twice before painting your whole office bold sapphire or crimson. If you don’t want to commit to repainting the walls, simply pull in colorful accent pieces.
Make Your Space Versatile
Working an 8 to 5 job at a graphic design firm or advertising agency would mean dedicating your workspace completely to upcoming projects for clients. But when you work from a home office, your high priority projects may be swimming in a sea of personal files, portfolio items, and ideas for future projects.
You don’t have to get rid of all these extras to design a professional workspace. Separate these by category and create a space that functions for any task—not just the most pressing assignments—by keeping your desk clear unless you’re in the midst of a task.
There you go, five great tips for creating an inspiring home freelance office.
Content provided by Modernize.