We're halfway through 2020, and one thing is certain: this year is one for the books. We at Emtek, like many others, are feeling the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and are doing what we can to remain positive and hopeful. We've found that channeling our energy towards things that can be controlled, such as beautifying our personal spaces, is an easy and accessible way to lift our spirits and in turn make our time spent at home more enjoyable.

We've compiled a list of best practices when working from home, with a bit of our favorite home design tips added:

  • First and foremost, establish a routine and do your best to stick to it to promote a sense of consistency. Get dressed for work in the mornings (informal clothes are ok!), have breakfast, make your bed, etc. Giving structure to your day can help ease anxieties.

Design by @gowlerhomes | Photography by @jaceycaldwellphoto

  • Having a dedicated coffee station (with Emtek hardware!), like the one featured above, can help make a ritual of your mornings. Start your day off right with a cup of coffee, tea, or whatever makes you feel energized and ready to tackle the day's activities.
  • Be sure to give yourself breaks. Get up and move around every so often to stretch your legs and help get your blood circulating.
  • Speaking of moving around, make it a point to take walks outside while taking appropriate safety measures during your breaks or lunch. Be mindful of your mental health needs, as spending extended amounts of time indoors can have negative impacts.
  • Have a dedicated workspace - whether that's a desk, kitchen table, or living room. Whichever makes the most sense for you! The goal is to promote a sense of separation between work and home. So whichever space you're able to carve out in your home for work, make sure that work only takes place there.

  • Work/personal life boundaries are important. Only work when you're on the clock and try to maintain your usual work hours. The better you are at maintaining these structures in place, the easier the eventual transition back to the office will be.
  • Communicate your boundaries and expectations to the people you live with so when you're on the clock, you can minimize distractions or intrusions.
  • Play music or podcasts if having background noise is something you like. Something not too distracting though. Listening to music you aren't as familiar with tends to be less distracting.
  • Check in with co-workers and try to maintain social interactions. Not having those daily in-person interactions at the office over coffee or in the break room can often lead to feelings of isolation. Being intentional with our communications can go a long way of helping everyone through these difficult times.
  • Have a to-do list, attainable short-term and long-term goals. As we've all witnessed this year, being flexible is key as things can change in the blink of an eye. Having this list will help you stay on top of your tasks as well as prioritize appropriately.
  • Try rearranging your "home office" to best suit your needs. If it's possible, place your desk by a window or where there is plenty of natural light. Open your windows to allow fresh air to come in. Switching a few things around can give your home a whole new look and brighten up your days.
  • Beautify your home with economical touch ups, clearing out the clutter, keep things tidy, add fresh flowers or new plants. These small changes can end up making a big difference.
  • Finally, simple DIY projects can go a long way in beautifying your home and making it an overall more comfortable place to work in. New hardware on your desk or on the door to your office can be a small and easy upgrade that will make you happy every time you touch either!