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  • Writer's pictureSteve Wright

Home-working - Backdrop Burnout!

The shift to home-working has affected us all in different ways. Parents of school-age children have had to balance work and education. Some people have found themselves working from the sofa or bedroom for the comfort or privacy they need. Many don’t have an ergonomic workstation.

Sometime towards the start of autumn 2020 I realised that the space I was working in was reinforcing a sense of confinement that lockdown and movement restrictions had imposed over the previous 6 months. I’m fortunate enough to have the space to work. My task chair and table are very comfortable but the backdrop that came up every time I joined a Teams or Zoom session had become the thing I was fed up of seeing on screen behind me. Wallpaper fatigue had kicked in and I was moving to use the blank wall for a change of scenery! Cue the meeting backdrop filters – background blur, nature scenes, a picture of my garden and snowy Christmas images changed the view at the click of the mouse but this was a temporary fix. The whole space needed refreshing.

Fast forward to January ’21. I committed to redecorating the room. It had been on the agenda for a few years but I was always too busy to do it. Booking the decorating days into my diary helped to create a mental division between working days and time off and gave the project a visible, achievable programme.

I listen to music a lot while I’m working and decided to merge some of my vinyl collection into the scheme alongside my favourite poster prints and a new digital sound system. Simple things that make me happy. I’m delighted with the finished job, I enjoy looking at it, it’s much more conducive to work and meetings but most importantly I’m enjoying being in the space again.

A few cans of paint, some picture frames and the time to think about my own briefing requirements were all it took. I guess that lockdown has given us the opportunity to consider our homes from a new perspective and if flexible remote working is here to stay it is important to be comfortable physically and mentally with the space you are in.

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