Revolutionize Working from Home This Summer by Taking Your Work Outside
For many of us, working from home has become part of our new reality. For others, it was already the norm before COVID-19 shuttered offices and workplaces around the world. Although working from home can be more comfortable than schlepping to the office every day and can even result in increased productivity, it can be tiresome to stare at the same four walls day in and day out.
This summer, why not take your work outside for a refreshing change of pace? Working outdoors has a ton of benefits and is a great way to get your Vitamin D and spend time out in nature while still thriving at work. This article will explore the benefits of an outdoor office while providing tips and patio furniture ideas for the ultimate office oasis.
Benefits of Working Outside:
You may have noticed that being home almost all the time over the past few months has resulted in more financial stress due to higher utilities. By working outdoors in the natural sunlight, you can lower your bills and reduce your carbon footprint at the same time by giving your electric lights and air conditioner a well-deserved break. For the environmentally and financially conscious, your new outdoor office will give you peace of mind while also being easy on your wallet.
Improve Productivity and Focus
Exposing yourself to some fresh air and sunshine is a great way to boost your productivity. Experts say that by stimulating the “reward” neurons in your brain, working outside will wake you up, help you focus and really get those creative juices flowing.
If you’re experiencing mental fatigue, getting outside will effectively “turn off” the sensors in your brain that cause a stress response, allowing the higher brain centres to be accessed. This results in better concentration and memory, as well as more “outside the box” thinking. You’ll be able to work harder and longer without feeling worn out – but don’t forget to take a break to enjoy your outdoor space, too!
Spend More Time Outdoors
Have you ever noticed yourself becoming tense, anxious or even depressed after spending too much time inside? This is actually a real health disorder dubbed by healthcare professionals as “nature deficit disorder,” and it can have a profound effect on both your mental and physical health. Working outside for even part of the day can lower your blood pressure, reduce your stress levels and even improve your immune function.
How to Set Up an Outdoor Office in Your Yard:
Ensure Your WiFi Works Outdoors
Whether it’s outside or inside, a home office is only as good as its WiFi. Like it or not, most of us rely heavily on Internet access while working from home. Ensure you have plenty of bandwidth and that your WiFi signal can reach the yard without being weakened or cut off.
You may have to move your router closer to your outdoor office space, or even invest in a second router to put outside. If that doesn’t help, you should contact your provider and see if they can provide you with an improved package that will give you a stronger signal.
Make Sure You Have Enough “Desk” Space
It may not realistic to haul a full-sized work desk to your outdoor office space, but you will want to make sure you have enough space to work comfortably and spread out your materials. A large patio table or even a picnic table will usually suffice for this.
Pro tip: On a particularly windy day, make sure you bring a paperweight or something similar outside with you to keep your papers and other materials from literally getting away from you. All it takes is one errant gust of wind for that report you’ve been working so hard on to end up in a tree or in the pool.
Choose a Chair with Enough Support
Although it can be tempting to simply stretch out on the grass with your laptop while you work, after a few hours your back won’t be thanking you. Ergonomics are no joke; it is essential that your outdoor office offers adequate seating with back support and maybe even a cushion to make your seating arrangement as comfortable as possible.
Get an Umbrella for Shade and to Avoid Glare from the Sun
Even though the whole point of an outdoor office is to soak up that much-needed Vitamin D, you still don’t want to end up baking in the harsh sunlight for hours on end. This is why it’s so important that your outdoor office has plenty of shade – trust us, your skin and your eyes will thank you.
Another issue that many people forget to consider is the glare from the sun, which can make it difficult to see your screen and get any work done. If you are not working in a covered area, a large umbrella can be useful for keeping you and your screens out of the sun.
Have an Outlet and Extension Cord
There’s nothing worse than being forced to scramble for a charger when you notice your laptop or cell phone is about to die, and this frustrating situation can be compounded when you’re working outside without an outlet in sight.
When setting up your home office, making sure there is an outlet nearby is critical. This way you won’t have to retreat inside when your battery begins to run low. If there’s no way to situate your outdoor office near an outlet, an extension cord with a power bar attached is a quick and easy solution.
Best Patio Furniture for an Outdoor Office:
If your outdoor office area is lacking shade, an umbrella may be the perfect solution. A Cantilever Umbrella is a versatile and dynamic piece of furniture that is not only functional, but also adds a flare of style to your space. Not to worry – you don’t need a specific type of furniture (like a table with a hole in the middle) to use a Cantilever Umbrella. They don’t need to be set up in a specific location, either, as they come with a sturdy base that allows you to place them wherever you want.
They also have a rotating arm that allows you to rotate the canopy without moving the base, which is ideal as the sun moves throughout the day or to protect against rain coming from different directions. Cantilever umbrellas also have hand cranks or buttons allowing them to tilt in various directions, providing ample coverage rain or shine!
Rectangular Dining Table
Depending on how much space you have, a large rectangular patio table can act as both a functional work desk and a dramatic statement piece for your outdoor office space. No matter the size, a rectangular table allows you to make the most out of the space you have. You’ll be able to spread out your work materials, and after work, the whole family will be able to sit around it and enjoy an outdoor meal.
Supportive Dining Chairs with Cushions
As convenient as it may sound to simply wheel your office chair outside, office chairs aren’t generally designed to live on the patio. They can be damaged by being exposed to mildew, especially on rainy or humid days. Plus, dragging your office chair in and out of the house every day usually leads to more dust and grime being tracked indoors.
Instead, try opting for a set of high-quality patio chairs that provide the lumbar support you’ll need for an extended work sesh. In this situation, comfort is key – however, most patio chairs come in a variety of colours and décor to match your space. Try a chair that comes with a cushion for additional comfort – cushions made from quick-drying foam and fabrics are the best choice if you’re working in an uncovered area.
Working from home can be a dream by adding an outdoor office space to your yard or patio. The commute will be short, you can sit in the sunshine with your summer tunes blaring as you work, and it’s only a short walk to the grill at lunchtime! Spruce up your space with some plants and other decorative touches and before you know it, you’ll be ready to work from home in bliss this summer.