My husband and I share an office. I work part time from home every day and he usually works from home about once or twice a week. For the most part we enjoy the days when we are both working from home because we get to see more of each other, but depending on the work load, stress levels, and call schedules, it can be a little stressful. Here are a few tips that work for us, to keep the peace, when we are both working at home.
Plan Out Your Day
By far the most important thing is taking a few moments in the morning to discuss our schedules. My husband’s job requires a lot of conference calls, regular calls, and meetings. If he can give me a run down of the times he will be on the phone for scheduled calls, I can schedule any calls I need to make around that. My job doesn’t require a lot of time on the phone and my schedule is more flexible, so I’m happy to work around his.
Invest in Noise Cancelling Headphones
Another essential in a shared office is headphones! My husband and I both like to listen to music when we work but our taste couldn’t be more different! Headphones solve that problem easily. Honestly, another reason I use headphones is to signal to my husband that I can’t chit chat right now! Sometimes I just get in the “zone” and don’t want to be bothered and putting my headphones on seems to do the trick. Also, if you purchase noise-canceling headphones, they work well to block out your spouse’s conference calls, so you can concentrate on getting your work done.
Keep The Office Neat
My husband and I are a little like the odd couple as far as our office goes. He’s really pretty neat while my space gets messy and jumbled and cluttered with paper and to do lists and coffee cups. I don’t mind the mess when I’m working, but I know it bothers him so I try to keep it neater on the days we are both working at home. It’s a small gesture, but it really helps to keep the mood light.
Go the Extra Mile
Take the time to do a little extra something for your spouse when you are both working in your home office. Honestly, I love when my husband brings me a cup of coffee or asks if I want a sandwich if he’s making one for himself. Again, it’s a quick and simple thing, but it goes a long way for keeping the peace.
Sharing an office with a spouse can be challenging, but hopefully, these four simple tips will help your day in the home office run more smoothly.