Early in the pandemic, an unprecedented number of people started working from home. Then, over time, what started as a necessary reaction to an unknown danger morphed into a preference. People got a taste for working from home. They became accustomed to a life free of lengthy commutes and uncomfortable office chairs.
In 2022, McKinsey estimates that roughly 58% of the workforce still works from home – at least some of the time. Some people have fully transitioned to remote work, while others struck a “flex” arrangement with their employer to spend a fraction of their week at home.
Aside from being an interesting portrait of modern work culture, these stats drive home the importance of domestic living. For 58% of people, a home isn’t just a leisure space any longer; it’s a dedicated zone for productivity and focus.
This article offers three tips on creating a focused environment at home. Whatever you need to concentrate on (work, passion projects, kids’ homework), you’ll find actionable advice below on how to optimize your living space.
Declutter, Clean, and Get Organized
Have you ever sat down to a task at home, only to have your attention diverted by a pile of clothes in the corner of the room or a stack of old paperwork crowding the desk? You aren’t alone. According to researchers and psychologists, clutter does several funny things to your brain. Primarily, it overloads your brain with stimuli, causing your attention to drift, and elevates your cortisol levels, precipitating a noticeable stress response.
Creating a focused, productive atmosphere, therefore, requires you to get serious about home organization. If you want the job done right, consider hiring professional home organizers who can declutter your home, then devise and implement easy-to-follow organizational systems. If you work from home, hiring a professional organizing service is a shrewd investment that can pay dividends in increased productivity and job performance.
Compartmentalize and Create Boundaries
A business office is particularly effective because it’s purpose-built and compartmentalized. The moment you walk through the door of an office building, your brain understands it’s time to work. In contrast, it is markedly harder for your brain to get the memo when you work next to your bed or have screaming kids running through your “workspace.”These only serve to blur the lines between your domestic and professional obligations.
Create boundaries in your home. If possible, set up a dedicated home office far from the “action” (kids playing, your spouse doing an at-home fitness class, or the neighbours mowing their lawn). If you’re hiring a home organizer, let them help you establish a dedicated, compartmentalized workspace.
Arrange for Fresh Air and Sunshine
Finally, take care of your body’s basic needs. Studies show that environments high in natural light are conducive to focus – a product of the increased vitamin D and serotonin. Studies also show that fresh air promotes optimal cognitive function by regulating blood oxygen levels.
Ideally, you should set up your office in a room with large, operable windows, which can provide fresh air and natural light. And in the winter months, when open windows are unfeasible, consider punctuating your day with walks around the block to capture some much-needed air and vitamin D.
With these three simple tips, you can transform a portion of your home into a productive, focused work environment. All you need is a little planning and the help of professional home organizers.