Unlike the office where we have little choice in where we sit, the lighting used, or even the temperature of the air-conditioning, we are the masters of our office at home. For many of us, this Circuit Breaker period will be the first time for us to work from home for an extended period of time.
To make the best of work from home, here are our 5 tips to setting up your home office for some serious productivity.
1. (Try to) Have a dedicated space and work on a proper table and chair
We understand that space is a luxury, but try to set up your office in a dedicated space free from distractions (i.e. not your coffee table in front of your TV). Having a proper desk and chair that allows you to have good ergonomics is also essential. This will help reduce unnecessary strain on your neck and low back. To protect your eyesight, make sure that your screen is at least 50 cm away from you (the larger the screen, the further it should be). Consider using this handy tool to find out the ideal height of your table and chair based on your height.
2. Invest in a good headset
At the office, we typically have dedicated landlines and office phones. Now that we’re working from home, we’re expected to be contactable via our mobile phones all the time (bummer). This is where the slim design of your mobile phone becomes a nightmare if you find yourself holding up your phone to your face with your shoulder while typing away. Imagine the neck pain you’ll suffer after multiple calls. Furthermore, did you know that mobile phones carry 10 times more bacteria than most toilet seats! Save yourself a facial and the neck pain, and invest in a good headset to solve this problem.
3. Open your windows for natural lighting and ventilation
While the weather in Singapore can get quite hot and humid, switching on the air-conditioning all day racks up your electricity bill and can get quite dry. When working from home, we recommend opening your windows for natural lighting and ventilation. Natural lighting not only helps with mood and mental well-being, it is also more comfortable on the eyes compared to artificial lighting. Every hour, give your eyes a short break and look out the windows to have a change of view.
4. Place a 2-litre water jug on the table
We cannot emphasize how important it is to get enough water daily. Up to 60% of the human adult body is water, and it is essential in the proper functioning of organs and health. While the recommended amount of water depends on several things (e.g. your weight, health condition, etc.), the general guideline for most would be to drink at least 2L of water a day. By placing a 2L jug of water on your table, it helps you track your daily water intake and reminds you of how far away you are from your 2L goal at the end of the day.
5. Organise your desk like a cockpit
If you’ve never seen how a cockpit on an aeroplane looks like, here’s one for reference:
Pretty cool, huh? Well, thousands of hours were spent designing and refining the layout of the cockpit. A good cockpit puts all flying controls and information panels needed within arm’s reach. Anything else distracting is excluded.
Likewise, when setting up your home office, keep only the things you use daily within reach and avoid clutter. This could be your notebook, phone charging stand, calculator, or whatever tools of the trade you use. This will help you focus better, increase productivity, and be better organized.
For more tips on how to prevent low back and neck pain when working from home, get them here.
Otherwise, download our free e-guide on WFH tips and exercises you can do at home for greater spinal health.