Whether it’s at home or in someone else’s cubicle, the quality and nature of your office lighting can have a dramatic effect on your productivity. The wrong sort of lighting can dampen your energy, generate headaches and eye strain, and overall greatly inhibit your capacity to work effectively. Read on as we take you through how to properly light your home office, and ultimately be more productive in your workspace.
Don’t be too direct
Our number one home office lighting tip is to avoid the glare of directly overhead lights. Instead of blinding yourself in this way, try and find ways to diffuse what will be the major source of light in your workspace. For instance, by placing lampshades over your lights, you will be able to scatter and soften some otherwise harsh lighting. Another alternative is to use upward shining floor lamps or even LED PAR lights that will bounce your light off the walls and ceiling. Whatever means you employ, your end goal is to illuminate your entire workspace and in a way that doesn’t create undue glare – or create areas of light juxtaposed with shadow.
Use task-oriented lighting
For focus-intensive office jobs like filing and computer work, you should utilize a well-defined source of light that will enable you to focus completely on the task at hand. For instance, if your office contains multiple different workstations – such as a desk for computer work, an area for filing, and so on – be sure to set up a separate task light at each station.
Think carefully about where you are going to position your light. For example, if you set up your light source behind where you sit at your office computer, then this will surely cast unwelcome glare onto your monitor. You should also bear in mind the way you set up your task lights, lest they cast unwanted shadows. For instance, if you are a right-handed writer, your body may cast shadows when the light is positioned also to the right. Consider as well, the location of any windows when you set up your home office lights.
Don’t forget natural light
When designing the lighting for your home office, don’t neglect to overlook the unique benefits of natural light, whether it comes from your windows, skylight, or some other kind of portal. Sunlight generates a warm quality of light that improves the overall mood and ambiance of your workplace. At the same time, if you decide to utilize natural light in your workspace, you will have to account for the glare created by direct sunlight at certain hours of the day. A good rule is that you should place natural light sources before or beside your workstation and computer screen in order to avoid glare – and enhance the views in your office! Try also to position your workstation in either a north or south direction to ensure that your light doesn’t cast a shadow during any point of the day.