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Working With Small Spaces

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If you’ve decided to work from home or just want an area for work stuff, you absolutely should set up a home office. But what about those of us that are pretty limited on space?

My very first apartment was a one bedroom, one bath at 600 square feet. The living room, dining room, and kitchen were just one big room while the bedroom suffered with my queen sized bed and dresser set. I know small spaces pretty well, in fact, I generally thrive in them. Who wants a bigger place? That means you’ll end up buying more stuff to fill up the space and more stuff you’ll have to keep clean. When I first started working from home, I was renting a bedroom from the parents of my significant other. There was no way to create an office environment in a bedroom…except I totally did. Here are my three tips for working with small spaces!

small home office

© Flickr user DavidMartynHunt

Find That Awkward Spot

Every house everywhere (unless you’re a hoarder maybe) has that awkward spot/area that just never got filled with anything. It could be just a small stretch of wall or maybe a closet that is just sadly bare. I’m a big fan of putting a small folding table or desk into a closet and creating your office space that way. What’s nice about it is that you can close it up and it won’t look weird or out of place. If you don’t have a closet to spare, look for the empty stretch of wall and start there.

Don’t Forget Organization

Once you’ve chosen your area, it’s time to think storage, both above and below eye level. Every single inch of the area should be full of dividers, shelves, and drawers. You can sneak a filing system under the desk and still leave room for your legs. I love loads of shelving, personally, and you can get some cheap do-it-yourself kits at most stores in your area. You’ll need to be on top of your organizational skills, especially in a smaller space, because it could end up looking pretty chaotic and messy. Label everything.

It Can Be Small And Pretty

Just because you have a tiny space to work with doesn’t mean it should go without decor. That’s one of the things that will make it feel complete. Barren walls and empty surfaces are sure to put your productive mindset in a rut. We’ve discussed how yellow paint can help increase productivity, which may sound crazy but is actually backed by studies. Ashley Lee also discussed how artwork encourages creativity:

Art affects the atmosphere of a room

Hendricks suggests having photographs and paintings that generate a sense of calm. So consider hanging a beautiful landscape or black and white photo that depicts nature at its best. Doing so will help relax employees and clients alike.

Make Sure Your Workstation Works For You

If you have a big case, two huge monitors, and various other clunky office items that you’re hoping to smush into this area, think again. Downsizing is the name of the game when it comes to small spots. You may be able to get away with two monitors if you’re able to get them in smaller sizes. It may even be best to consider using a laptop instead of a desktop. I know one woman who was using a separate copier and printer. Technology has given us all-in-one faxing, printing, and scanning options. Make use of that! There are ergonomic chairs that can squeeze into smaller desks now, so you don’t need a huge, eyesore of a chair. Consolidate your stuff!

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Alyssa Shea

Alyssa Shea

Alyssa Shea transplanted from Illinois to South Carolina. She loves to write, read, and spend time with her dog and her family. Alyssa is very active on social media. She has been part of the AccelaWork team since 2013.
Alyssa Shea

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