Quite often, the home office is the most forgotten room in the house – a place to dump the things you’re not quite sure what to do with. But in these times where we are increasingly working from home, and showing up on camera for Zoom calls and live streams, the time has come for us to turn this dumping ground into a sacred space. After all, we want to create a productivity-inducing space, not a room you avoid (along with the work you need to get done!). One of the key elements to creating the perfect space is home office lighting. We all know how important the right lighting is to the feel of the main rooms in your home, and the home office is no different. Getting the balance right is no easy thing. But lucky for you, I have a few tricks up my sleeve I’d like to share…
1. Office orientation
It might surprise you to discover my first tip on home office lighting has nothing to do with lights. The first thing to consider is the orientation of your workspace. Which direction is the natural light coming from? Where is your desk in relation to that? Putting your desk underneath a bright window might be nice for the view, but headache-inducing glare could be an issue. You’ll also need to consider where the existing overhead lighting is positioned. Are you positioned so a distracting shadow is cast over your work? Keep trying various positions in the room until you find what works best for you.
Personally, I recommend positioning your desk perpendicular to the window so you can gain all the benefits of the incoming natural light without being dazzled by the strength of the incoming sunlight.
2. Modifications throughout the day
It might be an obvious one to some, but with the changing light throughout the day, you’ll need to modify your lighting as you go. For instance, if your office has west-facing windows, you’ll need some quality window dressing. Being Brisbane, we’re also needing to block out some of that afternoon heat, or your office will become a sweatbox! When I’m looking for blinds in Brisbane, I look for ones that will block out the harsh sunlight, but will still allow me a view outside. Having a connection with outdoors definitely helps with productivity.
Once the sun goes down, you’ll need to make further adjustments. Which leads me to…
3. Home office lighting: Top tips
I bet you thought I’d never get here! Finally – the lights themselves. If your home office space is in darkness, or has no natural light, strategic lighting is essential. We want to create a home office lighting scheme that is perfect for productivity and prevents eye strain and fatigue. While overhead lighting is necessary, it should not be the only source of light while you work. A specific task light on your desk (or clamped to an adjacent shelf if you are short on desk space) will help you to focus on your work, and keep those eyes in tip-top condition. A classic desk lamp will always be a winner for its simple design and adjustable nature.
Don’t forget, atmosphere is still important in a home office, so ambient lighting (for form, not for function) is still important. Add to this, it’ll help create an eye-catching backdrop for those ever-increasing Zoom calls (it helps to have the most stylish office on the call, right?!).
And don’t forget, if you need any extra guidance on your own home office lighting setup, you can always reach out to me. I’ll be able to help you choose the right lighting (and everything else) to make your home office as beautiful as it is functional.