Here I am, in the business of organizing home offices, and I felt like the cobbler’s child. I’ve been working out of my own home office for years and there were problems in my set-up I could no longer ignore.
I needed to treat myself like a client and re-define my workspace. Other posts have detailed the project, but today I want to tell you about lessons I learned or were reinforced through the process.
Know what you want. I had a clear idea of how I wanted my office to change. I considered logistics and my workflow. I sat in the current space and visualized different arrangements. I knew that while I like sleek, uncluttered surfaces, I also wanted the space to be inviting and allow it to get a little messy. Color is important to me so I paid attention to color choices. I wanted to keep most of the existing furniture but thought about ways I could make the old pieces fresh. I spent a lot of time thinking before doing anything.
Plan ahead. Once I knew what I wanted, I made a list of everything that needed to get done. Everything! I brainstormed and wrote down whatever came to mind without worrying about sequence. I measured everything. Everything! I measured the current bookshelf to determine the minimum linear inches I needed. I measured the largest items I was planning to shelve to determine shelf depth. I measured furniture so I could draw a floor plan. I thought about where I could work while the office was in flux, and how to accomplish that. I estimated how long the project might take and what I needed to do ahead of time to miminize disruptions or delays.
Expect the unexpected. No matter how well you plan, something will not go as expected. I tend to beat myself up if I forget something in my planning, or if I don’t have a Plan B. But, hey! You just have to roll with it and re-group. I didn’t try out the sander I borrowed before using it on a closet door. The damn thing ate through four layers of old paint when all I wanted to do was rough up the surface. So I smoothed the edges as well as I could and knew that only I would notice the flaw after it was repainted.
Pat yourself on the back. When you are the client, you have to remember thank yourself for a job well done. Focus on what went right. Step back and admire your work. Take pictures and show off! Be your own best testimonial – you deserve it.