Working at home

4 min read

man with glasses studying at desk

Many of us dreamed of working from home, the comfort of your bed or sofa within reach, staying in your comfy pyjamas all day (or half pyjamas if you need to do video calls) and of course, the envy of all, being able to lie in bed until 8.55am and start work at 9.

Working from home was not an option for many of us, instead we forced ourselves out of bed early in the morning, grabbed the much needed cup of coffee and stormed our way out the house and into the packed buses and trains of Hong Kong morning rush hour.

However, everything changed with covid. Initially, there were little impacts onto our lives but when the cases increased so did restrictions. Restaurants were forced to limit patrons to 4 people per table, then 2 then zero, at this point many of the big international companies such as Google sent all employees to work from home, my other companies followed suit.

What happened next was no more morning rush hours, no more bustling lunch hours just a very quiet Hong Kong.

For many, myself included, working from home is both a blessing and a headache. I live in a village far away from city centres as if removed from society. There are pros and cons of living in villages so remote but that’s not for this blog, but I will point out a major factor is how your room may not be the best work environment. Its ok for answering emails and urgent tasks, but spending the entire day (and after) in it can be stressful if its not in peak condition.

I am right to say, and without doing thorough research, the vast majority of those living in Hong Kong do not have the luxury of living alone. In fact some still share rooms with other family members, now since workers were perhaps the last to be released to work at home, students and retired family members were long ago restricted to be at home.

That’s just one side of it, how many us have a free desk or even study room to work in, what is the state of it? I’m sure that there are still lots of distraction in the room which will drag your attention away from work. Even now, practically two years since covid started, there are many who work from home and should be prepared to work from him in case of any sudden flare ups with cases.

This brings us to the part of how reorganising to refurbishing your room can dramatically change your working environment allowing you to focus and be more relaxed.

De-cluttering

Hong Kong homes are shamefully small to live in, worst of all we pack it full with things we want and live, such as Gundam figures and other such collectables. All this can affected your mood as your conscious sees all this, a study in the US found that clutter can make us feel stressed, anxious and depressed, with signs of increased cortisol proving this.

So if you want to work more efficiently and comfortable at home, start with decluttering your room and your house (where possible, for me its not since my parents wouldn’t allow me to throw most things away).

This happens to touch upon minimalism where you throw away ( or sell) things that don’t add value to your life. Again this is for another blog.

How to De-clutter

One great solution can be utilising storage boxes to sort and maximise the available space. Now, instead of the traditional methods of using the bulky and eyesore standard boxes, you now have much more varieties to choose from. Take for example, these white portable storage boxes which have a transparent lid and side flap for easy access. You are able to always see inside these boxes rather than store and forget as your would traditional ones, don’t be afraid to add heavier items inside as it comes with wheels for easy transportation, and finally, the cherry on top, the wheels are kind of like plug and play, simply pop them in to use, or out when not in need they can be removed just as easily and be stacked upon each other.

An alternative to these are the more traditional longer and flat storage boxes, also with wheels , which serve just as well as any storage boxes and while you might be wondering why these are suggested when the above ones are hailed as better than traditional ones, well, the answer is that these, while traditional, can fit neatly under beds. Utilise the empty space down their and also protect your items from the always present dust.

Whichever storage box you may end up choosing, there is a real chance that not everything can be saved and stored. The alternatives would be, ideally, to rehome them via sales, or given away to charity.

While the above two options may seem more suitable for the bedroom or living room, we don’t want the bathroom or kitchen to be left out since they equally clutter up just as quick. Now, for these rooms we have something a little different and more suitable; 3 tier trolleys that comes in white, black and pink. They are a great space saver, especially in tight space, the 3 tier system allows for greater control on which items, depending on frequency of use, go on which tier, the cherry on top? Wheels with greater portability, even when full.

Finally, I would like to recommend a most suitable space saver for the kitchen as it acts as both a storage and additional worktop; Kitchen Trolley with stainless steel top. In additional to the stainless steel top, where you may use it as you see fit in the kitchen, you are also given two racks beneath to store food items or kitchen utensils.