Cast your minds back to March 22, 2020. A pyjama-wearing Boris Johnson addresses the nation via webcam from his bedroom whilst nervously shuffling his papers and unnecessarily pumping his fist out like something from an 80s music video – pleading to the nation to ‘stay at home’ and ‘work from home if possible’.
Initially, this was for a period of just three weeks (oh, those were the days), but how naïve we all were when you fast forward to February 2021 and consider we’re eleven months into the pandemic.
A staggering 11 months on, we are still in the same scenario of home-schooling and working from home. Emotionally pushed and pulled more than an old wooden door, these never-ending contradictions have become the ‘new normal’, with one thing remaining consistent, that we are working from home more than ever.
With a new lockdown in force and workers increasingly settled in their new routines, it looks like it is here to stay.
Now worn-down shells of our former selves, who will never again take for granted the freedom of purchasing loo roll, we find ourselves scrolling through TikTok aimlessly – wondering where our next breath of fresh air will come from, all whilst yearning for the day it will ‘all be over’.
Also now on our 100th documentary on Netflix, we can all agree that in reflection that whilst our collective sacrifice has undoubtedly saved lives, it also highlights the different environments we had at our disposal during the lockdowns.
In light of this, here are five reasons why you should invest in a home office study in 2021.
1. Save money on travel
Whether it is that extra hour in bed, the fact that you can Zoom call in your underwear, the unsupervised cheeky breaks, or the measly £6,500 a year you will save on travel, working from home certainly has its perks.
2. Increase your property value
As well as WFH being considered for the long haul, extra space will add value to your property.
In 2020, it was estimated that an extra room can add as much as £7,000 to your home. Factor in the £6,500 you have already saved on travel and you have just made £13,500 without even getting out of bed (literally) or, more realistically, out of your pyjamas.
3. Your mental and physical health
Did you know that performance pressure, relationship conflicts and not enough time spent with the family are the three biggest causes for concern when it comes to work-related stress?
A home office study will quite literally eradicate all these issues, providing you with the motivation station that you deserve.
4. Comfort and routine
Most workers are said to be ‘fed up’ with the twists and turns of bouncing between the office and the sofa and are looking invest in comfort.
The correlation between our unique routines and productivity is paramount. Some of us have confessed to some shocking WFH stories, including using ironing boards as work desks, kneecaps as coasters, and ‘diva’ cats unashamedly hijacking video calls.
Ensuring you are comfortable and settled in your surroundings with a pot of hot coffee can never be underestimated. It has been said that the average person is up to 22% more productive when in comfortable settings.
It also solves that ‘what will I wear’ anxiety, meaning you will only have to dress half of your body. Just make sure it is the correct half if you want to keep your job.
5. Not a luxury, now a necessity
In a year that transformed us all into ‘one step short of’ a prisoner, being let out for ‘one form of exercise a day’, we have learned a lot about our living situation in ‘the year that stood still’ – whilst we marched on.
Vastly different surroundings were heightened, and the nation’s differences when it came to wealth and comfort became increasingly apparent, dividing us into a nation of fortunate people who had their own home office study, gym and balcony, and those who had to improvise quickly – using their ironing boards as work desks, performing yoga moves in the lounge and allowing themselves a spot of air every Thursday, when they clapped the NHS.
What was once considered a luxury to invest in a home office, has now surely become a necessity.