How to Make Your Home Office More Livable

One of the benefits of working from home is the livable atmosphere created by your office. If your home office appears more institutional than anything else, you might want to use these tips to make it a little more livable.

Make Your Home Office More Livable: Add Some Color

You don’t have to use institutional colors — black and white — in order to create an atmosphere conducive to working. In fact, studies show that people who surround themselves with color are actually more productive. For example, my office walls are painted a light blue and the carpet is a darker shade, which gives the room a more homey feel. You can use whatever colors you like as long as they aren’t distracting.

Make Your Home Office More Livable: Display Family Photos

I always feel better after a hard day of work when I look up at the hutch above my desk to see pictures of my kids and wife. They make me feel connected to my family and safe in my home office. I also have pictures of friends from high school, pets that have come and gone, and pictures of my relatives. You can find inexpensive frames and Wal-Mart or Target or even at neighborhood garage sales.

Make Your Home Office More Livable: Buy a Chair or Couch

My friends joke that my home office looks like it belongs to a psychiatrist. In addition to my desk, work table and bookcase, I have a cushy arm chair with an ottoman in which I like to sit when I’m reading or conducting research. Sometimes you don’t even need to leave your home office to feel more motivated; simply moving to another chair in the room can help you to feel rejuvenated.

Make Your Home Office More Livable: Hang Posters

Even if you don’t have room in your budget for expensive artwork, you can probably afford a few cardboard-backed posters at the local mall. I like posters that are colorful and have encouraging sayings printed on them, as well as prints of oceans and rivers and forests. Decide what motivates and encourages you and surround yourself with it.

Make Your Home Office More Livable: Open a Window

I love spring and fall because I can turn off the air conditioner and open my windows in the office. A breath of fresh air is sometimes invigorating and can make you feel as though you’re working outside rather than cooped up in an airless room with your computer and a pile of work.

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