Home vs. Work Space


This is a guest post by Austin. You can read the guidelines to guest posting at our write for us page.

Working from home is a long lost dream of the American office worker, online university student, or stay at home parent. We have all said, at one point or another that the work we do could easily be done from the comfort of my own couch. While this may be true, doing work at home is much harder than most may think.

Consider the coffee shops around the world that are packed to the brim with “independent authors”, “social media gurus” and freelance writers. Take a moment to consider their limitations on workspace…they have none. They could easily be living our dream! Why don’t they? It makes little to no sense what-so-ever. This raises the question…how to establish a home work space that separates “home” from “work”.

It’s a must for the home worker, but can be difficult to pull off.

In order to solve this, most serious of problems, we must first completely understand the problem at hand. Let’s analyze the common reasons behind the lack of sanctity on working at home:

  • Distractions
  • Too comfortable
  • Alone
  • Lack of other working people

In order to successfully separate your work and home, we have to do just that. SEPARATE. First thing’s first – find your space, your work space, the space that will become your working sanctuary. Now, the obvious comes to mind in that you can make an entire room your workspace, but if that’s the case – you’re probably not worried about reading this article in the first place! So let’s consider some separation techniques such as; a sheet, a corner, a desk, a small nook or corner. Whatever you decide to use, just make sure it’s your designated place. When you’re there, you’re working – nothing else!

A popular option when workers are considering a workspace is creating one in the garage. This is an excellent option and often utilizes space that would otherwise go un-used to become riddled with clutter. This also brings up obvious concerns, such as climate – aka heating/cooling problems. We want our home workspace to be a year round sanctuary, not a seasonal spot.

The space you create is by far the most important and influential aspect of the office to home separation, but to go along with that you will need a few “office-esque” items. Search online for some fun organizational tools such as a whiteboard, or a chalkboard. Look for filling cabinets that will help fill in your space accordingly. Research shows that when a worker feels comfortable, or “tucked in” at their workspace, they are more efficient. So eliminate useless space, fill in the rest with organizational tool and items.

When considering, creating, and finalizing your workspace, remember one key aspect: the off switch. Your workspace needs an off switch. You have to be able to get up from your desk and be done working once you leave. A common problem with at home workers is their need and desire to never stop working, or the opposite. In either case, creating the proper workspace will be the biggest tool in solving this problem.