This post was most recently updated on February 15th, 2022
[A collaboration post with Day Translations – all thoughts are my own.]
When it comes to working from home or from any place for that matter, a decent desk setup essentials is crucial. Working from home often challenges your productivity. Your home office is always a place where you can switch things up. However, it’s not as simple as putting together a bunch of things that you like. From office chairs to desks and even your desk accessories, you need to arrange them to have a positive impact on your productivity.
Improper desk setup can not only hamper productivity but can also affect your health and work-life balance. These can be blurred vision, headaches, neck and back strain, and most importantly, poor body posture, etc. Currently, I have neck pain and already ordered a laptop stand to reduce the amount of pain. Can’t wait for it!
Now, let’s get into the topic at hand—the things you need to put together a proper work-from-home desk setup to start with. When it comes to home office ideas, don’t be afraid to let a little bit of your personality shine through with the decoration – it is your space after all.
Whether you need somewhere to tackle your to-do list, make some very important phone calls, or get stuck into your latest project, thanks to these fabulous tips, your home office is about to become your new favorite room!
How can I setup my desk?
The great thing about working from home is that you can create a space that is entirely yours. Your desk setup should inspire your creativity and allow you to get down to business in the best, most efficient way. You’ll need to think about what setup you like best, what fits your personality, and what do you need to get things done.
Being a blogger and freelance translator requires me to spend a lot of time sitting down. It is a great choice to invest first in a comfortable chair. An ergonomic chair is an excellent pick for your backache problems because of its immense lumbar support.
I don’t like strong light when sleeping or working. So when it comes to a desk lamp, always go for soft light. In fact, soft light is better because it designs a peaceful atmosphere. This also can help you release stress and put you at ease to work effectively.
But, too soft light is also not good. You must not work in dimly lit conditions because it increases fatigues, strains your eyes, and causes blurred vision. So, be sure to pick the right desk lamp – the sweet spot between the soft and dim lights.
I used to have home computer years ago but since I rarely use it, I moved it to my hometown. I have been using a laptop for years now. A laptop gives me much greater flexibility because I can work in any position at home and even work from a coffee shop. I can use my laptop for translating documents, open many resources, and use machine translation at the same time.
A laptop is a long-term investment. Make sure you fully understand the needs of your business before you make a purchase. As I know, laptop for working and gaming is totally different. If you work with a lot of videos, make sure you choose a laptop with a better graphics card. If you like to work from anywhere, the lightest ultraportable laptop would be a great investment.
Monitors can improve your productivity and save you time in your workday. When you have to work with multiple screens simultaneously, constantly switching between them can become confusing and lead to mistakes.
Having a secondary screen next to your laptop allows you to organize your tabs better. Personally, I never open more than 10 tabs. Opening so many tabs at once reduces my productivity because I will keep checking forth and back. I don’t open Twitter, Facebook, WordPress at the same time as I need to focus on one task at one time. For example, I will open the Twitter tab first then close it after finishing my business there before opening the Facebook tab.
Make sure to check your computer or laptop’s compatibility before you purchase a monitor. Monitors come in all shapes and sizes. Most require a power socket, but some work solely via USB.
Keyboard & mouse
Whether you’re using a laptop or a desktop setup, you’re going to invest in a good mouse and keyboard to tell your computer what to do. If your wrists and hand are working in an uncomfortable position, you risk getting strain or injury.
There are plenty of brands and models to choose from. But, wireless options are more flexible, but you will need to continue to have batteries on hand. Wired options created more tangled wires and look messier, but you’ll never have to worry about batteries running out and having to run to the store.
I use three planners this year and I keep them organized on my desk. As a blogger, I need a planner to track my blogging task such as checking emails, admin tasks, pitching to brands, scheduling social media posts, etc. For my translation service, I use Notion to organize my projects, stay in touch with my clients, remind myself of task deadlines, etc.
I also have a life planner to track family plans, meet up with friends, self-care routines, a list of places to visit in Bali, and things around my life. Lastly, a financial planner for tracking my income and expenses, sinking funds, saving plans, etc. I have all of these planners ready on my desk – part of my desk setup essentials.
During work desk setup, consider designing it near a place with ample natural light. It can be set up nearby a few windows and a well-ventilated area. Let the sun start your day with positivity for maximum productivity. Natural light also has positive effects on our physical and mental health.
Natural light is aesthetically pleasing – which is always a plus in usually small spaces like a home office setup. Let in the natural light is a wonderful way to make you connect with the outside world from the comfort of your office.
Add a personal touch
This is where you can really make your work desk your own. Your desk setup should be kept simple with the essentials instead of getting flashy together. Be careful about the color pattern you decide for your home office. Keep it elegant with the minimal color combination.
Theming your desk space around your interest is a great way to make your work area that you can relax in. Make your desk set up a space you enjoy. Surround yourself with things that make you happy. This could be a framed inspirational quote, scented candles, or mood lights.
Make sure that your desk can organize as many electrical wires and cords as possible. Try to keep the desk as roomy as possible with only the essentials.
Working under suitable conditions is essential for productivity and mental health. Always keep your workplace tidy and organize things at your convenience as to where they should be. So, roll up your sleeves and start setting up your desk today! Also, I’d love to see your desk setup essentials as well. Till then, stay safe and enjoy your work!