1. Soundproof It
Working from home may sound like a comfortable notion, but we are at the mercy of external factors like construction work or busy traffic that disrupt our peace with their tremendous noise pollution.
If you are sensitive to noise, consider sound-proofing your home or at least the home office space.
For the walls, you will want to add a layer of insulation that can absorb sound travelling between rooms and units. Some common insulation materials include polyurethane foam, which can reduce sound penetration by up to 17 decibels.
For your windows, consider soundproof windows that are usually made from thicker glass, and come in a double glass design, with an air space between them. Thick curtains could also help reduce the traffic sounds that come from outside your home.
2. Play Background Music
You don’t need dead silence to have razor-sharp focus while working. Playing some background music might actually aid in your productivity.
However, for music to improve your concentration and attention, it is important that you play songs without lyrics so that your mind doesn’t focus on the words instead of on the task at hand.
READ MORE: 5 Mindfulness Apps That Will Help You Rest, Relax And Focus
3. Get The Right Colours In
To decide on the right colour for your home office, think about what kind of environment sets you in the right mood to work.
Do you prefer to be in a calm state, or does a stimulating setting sit better with you? If you say the latter, then consider red for your walls, since some studies conducted have shown that people experience heightened concentration and awareness while being in rooms with a red background or light.
If you are your most productive in a zen environment, then blue or green, colours that invoke calm imagery of the sea and nature, would work well for you.
READ MORE: The Most Auspicious Colours To Make Your Home A Luck Magnet, According To Your Star Sign
4. Plants Are Your Friends
Introduce a few plants into your home office for a dose of DIY biophilic design, the concept of integrating nature with the built environment for mental and physical wellbeing. Start with these plants that have purported health-boosting benefits!
5. Fill The Space With Natural Light
Name one thing that improves your mood, feelings of wellbeing and even improve work performance? The answer: Exposure to natural light.
Studies conducted on employees have revealed that the absence of natural light and outdoor views cause them to feel tired and gloomy.
Also, if you’re working a desk-bound job, chances are that your eyes are glued to a blue light-emitting digital screen for many hours. The strain of this focus makes our eyes tired and long for a visual break. Soothe your peepers by looking out of windows that provide an outside view.
READ MORE: Everything You Need To Know About Blue Light Damage And How You Can Protect Your Skin
6. Set A Cut-Off Time
It is easy to work past 6pm, the usual office knock off time, when you work from home, simply because you’re technically “at” work as long as you remain at home where your office is.
Not fixing a time to stop working is not only unhealthy as your chances of overworking increase, but also unproductive, since you’re less likely to be as efficient compared to when you have a fixed 6pm deadline when all work stops.
Mimic that kind of corporate rhythm by setting yourself a cut-off time that is reasonable for you to prepare for rest.
READ MORE: 9 Ways To Achieve Better Work-Life Balance In 2019
8. Get Social
Humans are not made to live in isolation, so working alone at home can have a depressive effect on some people, which will dampen productivity. Counteract that loneliness by choosing personal over digital interactions, such as phone calls or face-to-face meetings.
9. A (Reasonable) Dose Of Caffeine
Most of us enjoy our daily cuppa, as its stimulative effects do jolt the brain to be more awake and aware, heightening our productivity in the process.
However, the peak levels and effects of caffeine are enjoyed within the first 30 to 60 minutes of consumption, after which it remains in the body for as long as 24 hours. The extended life of caffeine, in contrast, is a negative effect on the body as it will affect our sleep.
To ensure we experience mostly the positive effects of caffeine, limit your caffeine intake to the mornings and steer clear from it past noon.
READ MORE: 10 Great Coffee Places In Singapore For Your Caffeine Fix