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How to Create a Healthy and Relaxing Home Office

If you work from home regularly or love to freelance, then working from home is an all-too-common affair, and most of us tend to find any nook or niche possible to settle in and get some work done. But for those spending endless hours in front of their laptop, creating a workstation that is not just efficient, but also healthy is an absolute priority. A healthy home office helps improve productivity immensely in the long run, and it is the simple things that make a big difference in the home work environment.

Good design and proper ergonomics combine to shape a smart home office that makes your life a lot easier and far more pleasant by simply getting rid of all those little aches and niggles. From a bad back to a sore neck and constant headaches, a poorly designed workstation could be the reason for many of your current, recurring ailments. Read on to find simple and easy ways that you can change all that and head towards a more relaxing and hassle-free home office.

1. Setting up the Workstation

Many of us start small when working from home, and soon the amount of time we spend in the home office grows drastically while we still hold on to our old, poorly designed workstation. Start off by picking the right work desk and do not turn almost any desk you can find into one. The height of the desk is crucial in ensuring that you do not have a poor posture at the desk. A desk that is too short will force you to hunch over in an unhealthy fashion, while a desk that is too high will cause wrist and shoulder problems. That standard height suggested for an office desk is around 34 inches, but you can alter this slightly for your own specific requirements.

An organized workstation and work desk give the home office a curated look [Design: Terracotta Design Build]
An organized workstation and work desk give the home office a curated look [Design: Terracotta Design Build]
Wireless workspaces are far easier to create now than ever before [Design: Diane Bergeron Interiors]
Wireless workspaces are far easier to create now than ever before [Design: Diane Bergeron Interiors]
Tuck away all those wires to create an organized work desk [Design: Stiff and Trevillion]
Tuck away all those wires to create an organized work desk [Design: Stiff and Trevillion]
Right chair and desk can make a big difference in the home office [Design: Joy Street Design]
Right chair and desk can make a big difference in the home office [Design: Joy Street Design]

2. An Ergonomic Chair

Once your workstation is set, it is time to pick the right chair. The classic work chairs designed by the likes of Eames never fail to deliver. While some might be far too expensive, others like the Herman Miller Embody Work Chair are modern icons that are designed specifically for demanding work environments. As a rule, buy the best work chair you can possibly get, as this will make a big difference to your productivity. These top-notch chairs offer ample back support and ensure that you are never over-stretching or getting into bad habits as you focus firmly on work

Timeless Lobby Chair by Charles and Ray Eames in the home office [Design: Mia Karlsson Interior Design]
Timeless Lobby Chair by Charles and Ray Eames in the home office [Design: Mia Karlsson Interior Design]
Herman Miller Embody Work Chair for those who seek the very best! [From: UP interiors]
Herman Miller Embody Work Chair for those who seek the very best! [From: UP interiors]
Ergonomic Sayl chair in green [Design: GB Group Construction]
Ergonomic Sayl chair in green [Design: GB Group Construction]
Comfy modern desk chair in velvety blue [Design: Jennifer Pacca Interiors]
Comfy modern desk chair in velvety blue [Design: Jennifer Pacca Interiors]

3. Time to Get on Your Feet!

The popular adage these days is that sitting is the new smoking and a ’ticking time bomb’, and while things might not be as bad as that, many freelancers working from home can vouch for the effects that it has on health in the long term. A standing desk is the best alternative in this regard, and you can switch between your sitting workstation and the standing desk during different times of the day. A standing desk does take some getting used to, but by gradually reducing the number of hours you sit, work becomes a whole lot healthier.

A standing desk with stool gives you greater options in the home workspace [Design: Incorporated]
A standing desk with stool gives you greater options in the home workspace [Design: Incorporated]
Custom stand-up desk for a writer's home studio [Design: Howells Architecture + Design]
Custom stand-up desk for a writer’s home studio [Design: Howells Architecture + Design]
Traditional and standing desk next to one another [Design: Zuri Custom Homes & Renovations]
Traditional and standing desk next to one another [Design: Zuri Custom Homes & Renovations]

4. Cutting back on Noise

Nothing puts your work off like a whole lot of noise, and for those involved in creative fields, even a hint of noise can be completely debilitating. A home office that cuts back on noise is not just a more efficient space, but it also is far healthier. With the wide array of sliding glass doors and bi-fold doors on offer these days, creating a home work area that keeps away sounds while letting in natural light is pretty easy indeed. This also lets you keep an eye on the little ones as you work without being disturbed constantly. Attic, basement and backyard workspaces are definitely the next best option, as they create a home office that seems detached and different from the rest of the interior.

Backyard office is becoming a popular option among homeowners in 2016 [Design: Backyard Room]
Backyard office is becoming a popular option among homeowners in 2016 [Design: Backyard Room]
Keep an eye on the little ones even as you filter out the noise [Design: Naiztat + Ham Architects]
Keep an eye on the little ones even as you filter out the noise [Design: Naiztat + Ham Architects]
Modern home office with sliding translucent glass doors [Design: John Lum Architecture]
Modern home office with sliding translucent glass doors [Design: John Lum Architecture]
3-Form Office Doors for a stylish and ergonomic home office [Design: Kipnis Architecture + Planning]
3-Form Office Doors for a stylish and ergonomic home office [Design: Kipnis Architecture + Planning]

5. Natural Light and Ventilation

Lighting is another element of home office design that tops the ‘essential’ list in the home office, and a smart blend of ambient and task lighting is the way forward. And irrespective of the amount of artificial lighting on offer, nothing matches the benefits that natural illumination and a hint of sunlight bring. Even a small window can make a huge difference to the ambience of the home office and make those endless work hours far easier on your eyes.

Unique ceiling design opens up the home office to the world outside [Design: Michael Haverland Architect]
Unique ceiling design opens up the home office to the world outside [Design: Michael Haverland Architect]
Transitional home office with a cheerful ambiance [Design: Venegas and Company]
Transitional home office with a cheerful ambiance [Design: Venegas and Company]
Skylights bring in ample natural light into the home office [From: Signature Properties]
Skylights bring in ample natural light into the home office [From: Signature Properties]
Eclectic home office with a splash of blue [Design: Kell Architects]
Eclectic home office with a splash of blue [Design: Kell Architects]

6. A Tinge of Greenery

Much like the window, a dash of greenery can make a big difference in the modern home office where concrete, glass and stone often dominate the visual. An indoor plant or two also refreshes the atmosphere indoors, improves the air quality and brings a general aura of pleasant relaxation. Even if you do not have ample space on offer, a small indoor plant in the corner or some herbs in DIY containers on the desk can make all the difference. Think Green for a healthy home office!

Transitional home office with plenty of greenery [Design: Charles Vincent George Architects]
Transitional home office with plenty of greenery [Design: Charles Vincent George Architects]
Breathe life into that lonely corner with a tall house plant [Design: Manhatta Architecture]
Breathe life into that lonely corner with a tall house plant [Design: Manhatta Architecture]
House plants fit in with any style and theme you have going in the home office [Design: Jessica Helgerson Interior Design]
House plants fit in with any style and theme you have going in the home office [Design: Jessica Helgerson Interior Design]

7. Little Things That Matter!

Once you have all of the elements organized in the home office, it is time to make changes to the more minor details as you spend long hours in the space. Blinking might seem like a very minor aspect of what you do daily, but by reducing the number of times you blink as you stare at the laptop screen, you create a whole new set of health issues. Blink as often as you can and also keep yourself constantly hydrated. Walk around regularly and take small breaks every 20-30 mins. It is these small things that add up to create a healthy home workspace.

Fabulous beach style home office [Design: Nicholaeff Architecture + Design]
Fabulous beach style home office [Design: Nicholaeff Architecture + Design]
Contemporary home office connected to the pool outside [Design: Interiors By Agostino's]
Contemporary home office connected to the pool outside [Design: Interiors By Agostino’s]
Turn the home office into an inspiring environment [Design: K Studio – Moscow]
Turn the home office into an inspiring environment [Design: K Studio – Moscow]

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