3 tips for working from home

One positive legacy of the coronavirus outbreak may be that we are all afforded a little more work flexibility in the future, writes Runrug design consultant Harvey Shaw

IF YOU’RE a regular home worker, freelance or self employed, then the recent social distancing recommendations probably didn’t cause you too much of a headache – you just went back to your usual at home routine (fluffy socks, biscuits and tea on tap).

But if you’re one of the millions of UK workers who have only worked from your office you might be wondering how you’re going to be comfortable at home for the foreseeable.

UK homes have got smaller over the years, and many of us don’t have room for a dining table – combine this with other factors like having pets or children at home and things can quickly get tricky.


So if you’re a homeowner or renter without much space, you’ve got the kids at home, both you and your partner are both working from home, or if you live in a shared rental and you’re all vying for the comfiest work from home spot, below are some tips to keeping things calm and comfortable.

1. Think creatively about what a desk can be

So you don’t have a dining table or a desk – but do you have any low level shelving? Or a TV/media unit you can temporarily repurpose? Or how about a breakfast bar? As long as your laptop is at a level where you’re not leaning over too much to use it, you should be fine. It’s easy to fall into the working from bed position, but being hunched over the screen all day, particularly combined with not sitting on a firm chair, will cause discomfort pretty quickly.

If you have none of the above, find something low but sturdy to put your laptop on (storage box, bedside table) and sit on a firm cushion with your back against a hard surface.

2. Clear the space and stick to a routine

While it might not be possible to completely clear the space you’re working in, having a clearly defined work area (no matter how small it is) will make you feel more focused and set a boundary for you when it comes to logging off time. If you always work from the same spot you’ll start to associate it with that frame of mind, which could help your productivity.

3. Invest in a longer term multi-purpose solution

Many companies are coming around to the idea of having people working from home more regularly, and one of the positives after coronavirus may be that we are all afforded a little more work flexibility.

With this in mind, look for low cost solutions that can give you a quickly established home work space but can also be useful for normal day to day life. Think wall mounted fold down tables, or floating shelves that can be used as a temporary desk but store plants and books the rest of the time. Foldaway chairs are easily stored under beds or at the back of wardrobes and can be quickly taken out and put away when a wfh day pops up.

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