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Real Estate & Home Guide How to create a sleek, functional home office

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Posted: Wednesday, October 11, 2017 8:49 am

The regular work-at-home, non-self-employed population has grown by 115 percent since 2005, according to research from Global Workplace Analytics. That translates to 3.7 million employees working from home at least half the time, while 40 percent more U.S. employers offer flexible workplace options compared to five years ago.

The benefits working from home offers are indisputable, but those often come at a cost when you find it difficult to turn off the clock and stop working.

Developing an organized work-at-home routine and creating an efficient workspace to facilitate productivity is a must for those who telecommute. Take the below considerations into account in helping you become a productive, well-balanced and focused work-at-home professional.

• Space: Choose a dedicated, efficient workspace where you go specifically to get in the right frame of mind for the work day.

• Limits: Choose electronic and physical boundaries. Don’t let office work spill out of the workspace and resist the temptation to answer work emails during your personal time.

• Network: Be proactive and use technology to stay connected. There are many project management and collaboration options available that you can access via websites, apps or both. When it comes to meetings, there are also a number of services available to facilitate high-quality connections so you feel like you’re across the table rather than across the country.

• Aesthetics: Make your workspace a place you enjoy and surround yourself with things that make you happy. Don’t forget, it’s important to keep your space organized for better productivity. Products such as ClosetMaid’s free-standing storage furniture can transform a room into a stylish, functional workspace. The line includes pieces such as desks, printer stands, bookshelves and more, so it’s easy to keep things at your fingertips and store them neatly away at the end of the day.

• Change: Don’t always stay at home. For a refreshing change of pace, find a WiFi-enabled establishment and work from there on occasion. The change of scenery can provide a fresh perspective and minimize the sense of social isolation some telecommuters sometimes feel.

• Time: Set work schedules and time parameters, then adhere to them. When your office is at home, it’s easy to fall into a habit of jumping on the computer to handle one quick project or answer a simple email, but it’s easy to let that practice evolve into a 24/7 work schedule. Draw a clear line to ensure working from home doesn’t mean your home life suffers.

• Breaks: Get up, clear your mind and stretch so you can return to your workspace refreshed and energized.

It’s true that working from home brings plenty of advantages, but working from home also requires discipline. Maintaining a clean and organized workspace, keeping in touch and limiting distractions allows those who work from home the opportunity to be as successful as their in-office counterparts. JN

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