I know, I know, working from a comfy bed is suuuupppper temping. I hate to break it to you, but it is not ideal.
In today’s episode, discover how a dedicated home office workspace can enhance productivity, focus, and work-life balance for busy work from home and side hustle moms. Start your VA business off the right way.
Raise your hand if you are a work from home mama who struggles with finding your own space to work. I get it. But before you decide to work from your bed, let’s break down why this might not be the best idea, and how you can get creative in finding your own workspace.
Studies show that working from a dedicated workspace rather than from your bed offers several benefits that can significantly improve productivity, overall well-being, and work-life balance.
When you have a designated workspace, your brain associates that area with work and productivity. This connection can help improve your focus and concentration, making it easier to stay on task and complete your work efficiently. Having a specific area for work helps establish a boundary between your business and personal life. When you work from bed, it can be challenging to mentally switch your brain off from work mode, potentially leading to burnout and making it harder to relax during your non-working hours. Using your bed solely for sleep and relaxation can help improve your sleep quality. Associating your bed with any business-related stress can definitely lead to poor-quality sleep. Mamas, we need our sleep to keep up with our kiddos!
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It might seem comfortable to work from your bed, but it can lead to poor posture and strain on your body over time. Having a proper desk and chair in a workspace allows you to maintain better ergonomics, supporting your body in a more comfortable and healthy position. As moms, it’s so important to do what we can to stay in the best shape as we get older (speaking as someone who had back surgery earlier this year).
Having your own workspace allows you to keep your work materials and supplies organized and within reach. If you are working from your bed but have any necessary supplies stored somewhere else, you can lose time and momentum having to go to another spot to get the things you need. If you are plugging along on your computer and then you need to jot down some handwritten notes, think of how your momentum could shift by having to get up, go into another room, and find your notebook and pen.
By creating a designated area for work, you create a space that supports focus, organization, and creativity while promoting a clear separation between work and personal life. Alright, this is great and all, but what if you live in a house where every single room is occupied by people and stuff? You do not have to have an actual dedicated “office” room. Don’t get me wrong, having a room with a door you can shut would be awesome, but it isn’t always realistic. If you do have the ability to use an entire room in your house as a home office, absolutely do that! But if not there are a few options.
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I want to encourage you to get creative. Look for unused spaces in your house that can be used as a dedicated work area. You are looking for a space, not necessarily a room.
The last home we lived in was two stories. At the top of the stairs, there was a landing area nook type of thing that was not enormous but it ended up being large enough for me to put a desk and was right next to a closet where I could store office supplies. Our laundry room was also a decent size and in a pinch, I probably could have fit a desk in there.
At our current home, we have a room that is technically supposed to be a dining room. It did have two open archways, but we hired someone to enclose one arch that was adjacent to the front door for some privacy. I still don’t have a door to close off my office but it is definitely workable.
Other options are to put a desk in an unused corner of your master bedroom. Maybe you have a large walk-in closet with some space for a desk. You could use a loft space, a breakfast nook, or guest bedroom. I do want to be clear that when I say desk, I really mean just any sort of tabletop situation where you can set your laptop and work from.
What this all comes down to is that you need a dedicated workspace that you can look at and say yes, this is where I create, where I work, where I think, and where I make money. So please, don’t mix your bed and business!
[00:00:00] Melyssa: Hi. Hello there, mama. How the heck are you? I took some time off for the summer. If you are listening to this when I’m publishing it, it is early August. And did you do anything for the summer?
[00:00:15] Melyssa: I decided to at first I was going to take off the month of June, my husband and I had a really cool opportunity to be able to go on vacation. Just the two of us. Which oddly enough, we’ve been married since 2020, and he and I had never been on an actual vacation together. Like we had never stayed overnight away from the house just the two of us without our kids. So it was definitely due. We ended up going to Europe for the very first time either of us, we had never been. We flew into Barcelona, spent a couple of days exploring then gone on a cruise and had a couple of stops in France, Italy and Spain. I still, it still blows my mind [00:01:00] that we were able to do that. I never thought that I’d ever be able to travel to Europe. So it was really exciting. It was a blast. It was super busy. It was exhausting. And it was a great time for us. I’m glad we had the ability to do that.
[00:01:13] Melyssa: I came home and I came home sick. Probably because, you know, germies and exhaustion and everything else. So it took me a minute to get back to be healthy. And then I was like, you know what? I actually don’t want to start back up working in July. I think I’m going to take some more time off. My kids spend part of their summer with their dad in another state and they were coming back in July. We had camping trips planned. We had some other family coming into town, so it just worked out better for me to really have this long stretch off.
[00:01:46] Melyssa: And I was still doing client work. I wasn’t completely silent, but on the business side, the coaching side, I was actually pretty darn quiet. And so it was actually nice to kind of have that time to slow down. [00:02:00] And I am jumping back into it now. Actually, I shouldn’t say jumping, I am easing back in and actually someone on my mastermind yesterday reminded me that when you do take some time off like that, you have to give yourself some grace as you’re getting back into it. And don’t think that you can like jump in and go full force that it’s okay to kind of like ease your way back into it too. So I am going to take that advice to heart. But I am excited to be back talking to you. I missed having these episodes.
[00:02:28] Melyssa: One other quick thing that I wanted to mention when I started my podcast I was like, I’m gonna come and I’m gonna have episodes every single week, every single Monday, I’m going to drop a new episode. And that was awesome in the beginning, I’m really proud of the episodes that I was able to drop on every single Monday. But now I’m thinking that it may not be the best for me. So going forward, it might look a little different. I still haven’t decided exactly whether I’m going to do episodes every other week, or if I’m [00:03:00] going to have a couple of weeks where I have a few episodes in like a little series.
[00:03:04] Melyssa: Alrighty. For today’s episode might not be the sexiest topic, but I want to talk about workspaces. When you are a work from home mama, it can be a struggle to figure out like where you’re going to do your actual work. And I totally understand that it might be tempting to sit in bed your comfy bed and do some work right from there. But I want to break down some ideas about why working from bed might not be the best idea and how you can use some creativity in finding your own dedicated workspace.
[00:03:38] Melyssa: Now there are actual studies that show having a dedicated workspace rather than working from your bed can offer several benefits. And actually really increase your productivity and just your overall wellbeing. So it’s definitely something to consider.
[00:03:55] Melyssa: When you have a designated workspace, your brain associates [00:04:00] that area like that physical space with work and productivity. This connection, it really can help you improve your focus, your concentration, it can make it easier to like stay on task and get your work completed more efficiently. Having a specific area for work. It establishes that physical boundary between your business and your personal life. And really we do need that boundary. I think it’s so important not to let business leak into that personal time.
[00:04:30] Melyssa: When you’re working from your bed and I guys, I get it. Bed is cozy and it’s so tempting to just grab your laptop and put it on your lap there, but it can really be challenging to mentally switch your brain off from work mode when you’re in that cozy, cuddly place. And really that could actually lead to burnout and making it harder to relax in your bed when it’s not work time.
[00:04:53] Melyssa: Using your bed only for sleep and relaxation. And some other fun times. [00:05:00] Um, that can help improve your sleep quality and associating your bed with business related stress really can be a downer. It can lead to poor quality sleep and mamas, we definitely need our sleep time so that we can keep up with all of our kiddos.
[00:05:16] Melyssa: Honestly I get it. It definitely seems comfortable to work from your bed, but listen, It actually could lead to some really poor posture, strain on different body parts and having a proper desk or tabletop somewhere where you’re sitting in an actual chair and you have like a hard surface that you’re working on.
[00:05:36] Melyssa: That workspace can allow you to maintain better ergonomics. It could support your body in a more comfortable and healthy position. And as moms, it’s really so important to do what we can to stay in the best shape, especially as we get older. And I am saying this as someone who just had back surgery earlier this year.
[00:05:53] Melyssa: Also having your own workspace allows you to keep your work materials and your supplies organized and within reach. If you’re [00:06:00] working from your bed, but you have your necessary supplies stored somewhere else, you’re going to lose time and momentum. Think about how your momentum is going to shift by having to get up, go to another room, find your notebook and pen, go back, sit down, get comfortable again and do that. It’s just really a momentum killer.
[00:06:18] Melyssa: By creating a designated area for work, you’re going to create a space that supports that focus the organization, the creativity, and you’re really going to be promoting that separation again, like I said, that separation between work and personal life, that’s so important.
[00:06:34] Melyssa: Now you may be thinking like, okay, that’s great. I get it. I understand why it’s not the best idea to work from my bed. But what if you just don’t have an actual dedicated office space, like a quote unquote room office where you can close your door and work. Don’t get me wrong, having that it would be great. That would be ideal. That would be nice if you had that ability.
[00:06:56] Melyssa: It’s not always realistic and it’s not [00:07:00] necessary. It is okay to not have that actual office space. If you do have the ability to have that entire room is your home office. Go ahead do that. I think that would be awesome. But I want to give you a few options of creating that workspace in another area of your home.
[00:07:16] Melyssa: All right. So let’s get creative here. You’re looking for a space, not a room. And I think that’s where some people can get, caught up as they’re like, oh, I just, we have a three bedroom house and we have kids in every room and then our room and so there’s just no other room for an office. And I think that’s totally fine. You don’t have to have again, you don’t have to have that actual office. It can be a space in your home. At the last house that we lived in, it was a two-story home. And at the top of the stairs, there was like this little landing area nook. And it wasn’t enormous, but it did have a little, like I said, it was a nook, so it had three walls, it had a window. And it was adjacent to a closet and I ended up just putting a desk [00:08:00] right in there. Obviously I didn’t have a door to close. So there were times when I had to put on my noise canceling headphones. But it was right next to a closet where I could store my office supplies. And it really was a great little space that worked for quite a while for me.
[00:08:13] Melyssa: In that house. We also had, a decent sized laundry room. I’m not really sure why it was the size that it was, but in a pinch, I honestly could have set up a desk in there if I didn’t have that nook area available. So like I said, being creative, looking at those little spaces of unused floor space in your house, where is it that you have something like that?
[00:08:35] Melyssa: At our current house, we bought it brand new. We had to wait for it to actually be built. But we at the time were looking through the models, we’re in a planned community. So we had some models to look through and pick out our exact floor plan. There was a couple things that really drew us to this exact floor plan. One of those was that it was a four bedroom house and it actually had two suites. That works out really good for us because we have [00:09:00] three girls and two boys and the girls are all the same age, same grade. So it really would have been hard to split them up room wise. This allows us to put them in this huge room together. They have their own bathroom. They get to do all their girly things in there, they have a big old closet. They don’t have to share a bathroom with the stinky boys and it works out great for our family. That actually was a total tangent. The other thing that we really liked about this house was there was this area that is supposed to be a dining room. And as soon as I saw it, I had a vision for how it could actually be a workspace for me.
[00:09:35] Melyssa: What we ended up doing is it had two open archways. One of the archway is opened up to the front door. So we hired someone to enclose the arch so that I had a little bit more privacy, it wasn’t completely opened up to the front of the door. It gave us, a more formal entry area. And for now I left the other archway open, so I don’t have a door to close. Again, it’s the space that works really [00:10:00] well for me. Maybe someday, if I need to have a door that closes, I can. But I just work around it. I try to work only when the kids are in school and when I need to do things like this podcast, it’s actually kind of funny because I am sitting in my closet in my bedroom because that workspace that I have, it just, the acoustics do not work in there with a hardwood floor and that open archway. So I’m sitting in here on the floor. I’ve got my mic propped up, but it works. It works fine for me.
[00:10:31] Melyssa: You just have to really go with the flow and do what makes sense for you.
[00:10:35] Melyssa: Some other options to kind of think about in your own home is, do you have any unused corner in your master bedroom? Now, when I say not to work from your bed, I mean your actual bed, but if you have an area in your master bedroom, that is a dedicated workspace, that’s really the key point is that that’s that physical boundary. Again, you’re not doing the work in the sleep space. You’re doing the work in a [00:11:00] dedicated workspace. Maybe you have a large walk-in closet. Like I just said, with some space where you could set a desk, you could use possibly a loft space, a breakfast nook, a guest bedroom. I do want to be clear that when I say desk, I’m not saying like some elaborate big piece of furniture, it really can just be some sort of tabletop situation where you can put your laptop and work from it.
[00:11:25] Melyssa: You can always improve this stuff later, but for now the important part is that you have a space that has a flat area to work on and a chair. And that, that is your workspace. What it all comes down to is that you just need that dedicated workspace. That you can look at and say, yes, this is where I create. This is where I work, where I think, and most importantly, where I make money. So please, please, please. Let’s not mix our bed with our business ladies.
[00:11:53] Melyssa: That is what I have for you today. If you enjoy today’s episode. And if you’re going to take a look [00:12:00] around your house and find that dedicated workspace, shoot me a DM. And tell me , what area of your house you’re going to look at to put your dedicated workspace. Now I want to know what kind of creative spot you come up with. I am @melyssamunday or @mamasmakingmore on Instagram. I love DMS from you guys. They make me feel happy.
[00:12:22] Melyssa: And I love responding and I love learning more about you guys. So that’s all I have for you today. We’re going to continue on this theme for the next two episodes, kind of talking about our workspace and our organization. So stay tuned for those and I will see you soon.