For many, especially young professionals, their home isn’t really much of a home at all. It’s more like a place where they keep their possessions, they sleep, wash, get dressed and undressed. These people spend the majority of their time at work, and when they do have free time, they like to be outside, playing sports, watching sports, drinking coffee, going to the theater or enjoying the nightlife with their peers. So when they are suddenly faced with the prospect of having to spend long at home than they anticipated – perhaps due to sickness, or when working remotely – they quickly realize just how uncomfortable and unhomely their home really is.
Those who work remotely may find that their place just isn’t kitted out right for them. It may well have superfast internet, which is great, but working with a laptop balanced on your knee while laid in bed will end up giving you a stiff neck pretty quickly. If you’re going to be working from home, you need to have something that resembles an office. Now you’ll understand why offices look the way they do. You’ll need a desk, preferably with some drawers, so that you have some surface space, and a really comfortable chair. The chair is probably the most important thing – it’s going to be responsible for looking after your back, neck, hips and legs for a big part of the day, so you want to do your research at somewhere like Office Chairs Only to make sure you get the right one. The second thing you need to get right is the distance between your computer and you. You may well need to invest in a second screen you can see at eye level, as laptop screen are generally too close to the keyboard, which means we either risk straining our wrists or our necks. You can find some appropriate ergonomic upgrades online to suit your needs.
Next up is your bedroom. You’ve probably already got your bed the way you want it, seeing as you sleep in it every night (unless you’re one of the many career-driven types who find themselves sleeping in the office). But your bedroom can be much more than a room for sleeping in. It can be your haven, your sanctuary. Think about the walls. How do they make you feel? Quite often, with those who don’t spend a lot of time at home, their walls are quite stark and bleak – shocking plain white paint, or plain beige wallpaper. Think about putting up some pictures. If you’re not really into wall art, why not frame some pictures of your family and friends or your pets instead? If there’s room, create a seating area, so you don’t have to read your books, update your status and so on from your bed.
Then onto the dining area. If you’ve spent hardly any time eating at home, and when you do it’s with a pizza box on your knee, your dining area isn’t likely to be all that welcoming. But, if you have to stay home because, for example, you’re sick, then people might want to come and visit you. And if you have visitors, it might be nice to invite them to eat with you. You can make the whole dining area more comfortable by placing a rug under the table and chairs. This is also handy for catching any food that happens to be dropped – a rug can be washed easily after a meal anyway. Your dining room should have both warmth and character. Eating in a sterile, laboratory-like environment can kill conversation, keep people on edge and make the food seem to taste more insipid than it actually is. If there’s a window, try to place the table where the light will shine on it. You don’t want your guests to spend the whole time looking out of the window, though so be careful and go with your instincts on this one.
Even if you don’t intend to continue spending a great deal of time at home, it’s much better for you to return from work to somewhere that feels safe, familiar and cozy. It will help you relax and that is essential in today’s stressful world.