Is your home office stressing you out? There’s a chance it may be without you realizing it.
Even though working from home means you’re free of typical workplace stressors like office gossip, interruptions, and commuting, that doesn’t mean there aren’t other factors that are harming your productivity.
At the end of the day, you’re working with clients, juggling projects, dealing with loneliness, and trying to get paid on time—all of which can trigger stress.
How can I make my home office less stressful?
Unless you live on a remote island with every resource you could need without any obligation to work, you’re going to encounter stress at some point or another.
Luckily, there are several ways you can make your home office one with high levels of relaxation:
- Play relaxing music or white noise while you work
- Let as much natural light into your space as possible
- Keep your office clean and free of clutter
- Decorate your home office with photos of loved ones
- Keep your space at a comfortable temperature
In addition to these methods, keep your phone either out of sight or on airplane mode to avoid any other distractions or interruptions. Inc reports that the average person spends about four hours a day on their phone. Think about all the stress-relieving things you can do in that time like taking your dog for a walk, trying a new exercise class, or reading that book you just purchased.
Alongside these behavioral changes, these additions to your home office will help you create a space ripe for productivity and relaxation.
Take a deep breath (of clean air)
When you think of air pollution, what image comes to mind? A city skyline shaded in a grey, blurry fog? How about your…house?
The truth is, the air you breathe at home may not be that much better. In fact, a study from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency found that the concentrations of some indoor pollutants can be two to five times higher as the outdoor concentration.
That’s where an air purifier swoops in and saves your air quality. These devices are great for many reasons:
- Eliminate mold and spores from the air (side note: does anyone else hate the word “spore”?
- Absorb allergens and odors
- Keep your respiratory system happy and healthy
Best of all, clean air improves your productivity, so this is a no-brainer item for a stress-free home office.
Let’s purify that home office air of yours. These are a few we dig:
Invest in an ergonomic chair (your back will thank you)
Try as we might not to, most of us spend our work days sitting. We’ll spare you the anatomy lesson on how terrible sitting for extended periods is (hint: it’s awful for our bodies), and cut right to the chase.
Ergonomic chairs aren’t only designed to make you feel like you’re the commander of a space station that’s humanity’s last hope, they’re also designed to relieve symptoms of sitting for too long like back pain, fatigue, and stress.
They are definitely worth the investment. Here are a few great options for any budget:
Protect your eyes from blue light
Just as it’s vital to protect our backs from The Slouch, it’s equally as important to keep our eyes safe from the blue light our screens emit.
If you don’t wear glasses or if you wear contacts, you might want to add a pair of blue-light-blocking glasses to your Amazon cart the next time you place an order.
Let’s back up: why is blue light so bad for our eyes?
Blue light is a short wavelength, and because of that, it radiates more energy than other wavelengths. According to the Harvard Business Review, blue light can negatively impact sleep quality and also cause fatigue, eye strain, and other issues.
Keep your eyes healthy with these blue-light-blocking glasses:
A great-smelling home office is a productive home office
Maybe you’ve got that everyone-in-the-house-can-smell-it-except-for-you stench going on in your home office. Could it be the stack of plates hanging out near the door, or better yet, maybe it’s the smell of your hard-earned success?
Whatever the source, bad smells have no place in your stress-free home office.
Instead of spaying can after can of Lysol around your space, try an essential oils diffuser. Diffusing essential oils are beneficial for many reasons:
- Improves your respiratory health
- Elevates your mood
- Promotes great sleep
- Repels bugs
Diffuse lavender, tea tree, eucalyptus, or orange essential oil for a cleaner-smelling home office and give these diffusers a try:
If you spend the majority of your work day in your home office, it should be a place you feel at ease and ready to do your best work. Stress is bound to arise, but the best way to work through it is with a clear mind in a clear space.
What are your favorite items that make your home office stress-free? Tune into the latest episode of the Unemployable podcast for more solopreneur tips, tricks, and advice.