Tips for Working from Home from a Working-From-Home Interior Designer

As I've bounced around the internet a little more than usual the last week, I've so appreciated the way businesses and individuals are coming together to share tips and insights to help our collective community in what might be a longer than we'd hope for period of social distancing.

For example, my Instagram friend Rebekah DeBoer (@heresweethome on Instagram) has been sharing helpful tools/schedules for families as they face the reality of kids at home all day. My gal Jenna Kutcher created a free daily "control" planner to help us focus on the things we can control in a time when so much is out of our control (snag that here). And those are just a couple examples.

There’s a Steelcase article circulating on LinkedIn right now titled Working from Home: Real Life Lessons. As I was scrolling through the post, a quote from Stephan Derr, VP of Sales in Germany/Netherlands, caught my attention:

“This situation has validated how important physical places are to how I feel, how I get work done, and how I connect with people.”

Isn't that just the truth?! I'm in the industry of creating SPACES, and one of the reasons I was drawn to this practice is because I've always been very attuned to how the spaces in which I spend my time impact how I feel, my productivity, and my overall quality of life. On top of that, I've also worked from home for a looong time, so I thought this was an area where I could lend some helpful tips to the large number of people now at home who are used to having some space between work and home.

Let's jump in!

1. Dress for Work

As tempting as it might be to stay in your jammies, I am 100% more productive, I feel more professional, I'm more creative and more confident when I dress for work. That looks different for everyone. For me, it's "snappy casual": black jeans/nice top. I do my hair and makeup. I "go to work". Even if I'm only having phone conferences that day, I find the practice of getting ready and looking sharp helps me get in the mindset of "work time" and get the work done. If you're used to getting ready for work, this will allow your brain one less change in a time when so much else is changing.

2. Designate a Workspace BUT Observe Your Personal Working Style

This step is especially important if you have other people/kiddos now at home with you. If it's possible based on the space in your home and the needs of the family, I suggest setting up a designated workspace for yourself. Larry and I both have workspaces that are away from the main areas of the house where we can take calls, leave out projects we're working on, and close the door when we're done. This gives us a boundary between work and home, and is SUPER helpful, for sure.