I recently did a big makeover of my work space in my Tokyo apartment (see the photo above!) to fit in with my idea of minimalism and what I needed to focus on my business.
To be honest, in the past 6 years I have done the majority of my work on my online business at the local cafe while my baby was sleeping in the pram beside me. When my baby had a nap in the stroller on the weekends, I would simply bring out my laptop and start typing away on my blog posts and ebook updates. This was how I progressed my business step by step for so many years.
But nowadays my kids are getting bigger and my eldest is getting too big for the pram! So I need to work from home when my kids are taking a rest during the day.
So the next step I needed to take was to clean up my Tokyo apartment, throw away items that we don’t need anymore, and create my ideal work space!
Here are the steps that I took to achieve this:
- White white white!
- I have found a HUGE improvement by painting my kitchen table and chairs white. Previously they were a dark brown and really affected my mood. The brown colour honestly didn’t make me happy at all! Haha. So I painted them white and it has honestly been the best thing that I did to improve my work space. We also eat here as it is the kitchen table, and the kids often play here, so when I work I remove all the items from the top and it really creates a clean and bright work space which gets me in the mood for writing. I highly recommend to think about the colours that make you happy or help you to focus, and do some decorating in your space to achieve that!
- One of the reasons I chose my apartment was because of the gorgeous wide window overlooking the street below. It has a view of the Japanese house and garden across the road, so it is always green and leafy and such a beautiful view considering we are in the middle of Tokyo. I positioned my work space right in front of this window, so I can look out and feel the warmth from the sun. I highly recommend to position your work space in front of a window in your home too – it will not only offer light for you, but it will also help you to open your mind and think positively about all the things that you want to write in your blog and that you want to share with the world!
- Move furniture:
- I had a huge refrigerator next to my kitchen bench that was completely blocking the light into my kitchen and made it feel very closed in. It is a heavy old fridge, but I finally decided to move it! I took out all the food and shelves which made it much lighter, and slowly rocked it inches by inches away from the wall all on my own and moved it to the other wall opposite the kitchen. I’m so glad I finally did this! AND I managed not to break my back in the process. Haha. It has opened up my kitchen and given a fresh new outlook for my work space. If you too have big furniture that is blocking your view or making your room feel closed in, I highly recommend to move it! I guarantee you will be thankful for the new fresh look.
- Move the toys:
- If you have young children like me, then I am sure you are constantly battling a house full of toys strewn all over the place. It is a never-ending battle! But I have managed to make it a tiny bit better by designating one of the rooms in my apartment to purely toys. If you have room to create a toy room, make sure you do this! Even though the toys will creep into the kitchen and everywhere while the kids are playing, it will be easy to clean up and throw them into the boxes in the toy room, so you can maintain your clean work space when you need it.
- For my business, I basically only need my laptop and hard drive. These are 2 extremely important items! Which means, I need to keep them safely out of reach of the kids, AND I need to ensure they are stored safely where they can’t get damaged from water or any drinks that the kids may spill over. To solve this issue, I bought a lovely big storage box to store these items. I don’t let the kids play with this box (I explain this is Mummy’s box! haha) and I keep it close to my work space in the kitchen so it is easy to access. One of the important things to keep in mind when you are working on your online business (especially if you are a parent and you don’t have much spare time), is that you need to have your laptop within reach so you can easily start working when you need to. You don’t want to have to walk to a different room or go searching for your laptop! This is not good use of your time and it could mean losing the inspiration that you initially had for your writing. So make sure you keep all the items you need in a safe place and within reach (preferably close to your work space) to help you focus on your business and creativity when you have the time.
I hope these 5 steps help you to create your own work space in your home! I think the most important thing is to have lots of light, lots of clean surfaces, and a nice view out your window to stimulate your creativity AND to remind you how grateful you are to have the freedom to live the life that you want:)