• Cathy Catozzi

Two Quick Hacks to Ease the Pain of Working at Home

Physical pain: it’s a reality if your home office isn’t set up just right


With #COVID-19, the new reality is that a LOT of us are working from home. While on paper it may seem like an ideal situation, the reality is turning out somewhat different.

I can’t help with homeschooling your children, but as a content writer for Progress Lighting, I recently published some quick tips for setting up your new home workspace that I’ll pass on here.


Astra Pendant by Progress Lighting | Image: Schumacher Homes & Possibilities for Design


Whether you decide to land at your kitchen table or create a nook for working, proper lighting is essential. Quite frankly, lighting is one of those things you don't really think about, that is, until you have a killer headache or red, sore eyes a few hours into your workday.

Proper lighting plays a key role in avoiding fatigue, eye strain, and other visual discomforts.


Luckily, there are two easy hacks you can try to avoid this.


#1 Choose a space with abundant natural light. Select a location with a good source of ambient light. Natural light is ideal: it diffuses throughout the space, bouncing off the walls and ceilings, cutting down on glare that can reflect on the computer monitor and the shiny desk surface.


When selecting ambient light sources, the goal is to illuminate the entire space without creating undue glare and contrast. If possible, avoid using overhead ceiling fixtures as the primary source of lighting. Ceiling lights can be harsh and cause glare, leading to headaches and eye strain. If overhead lighting is the only option, use a dimmer switch to vary the light levels as needed throughout the day.


#2 Position your desk or workspace correctly to avoid glare. If the room has natural light streaming from windows, place your desk perpendicular to the window, ideally facing north or south so that sunlight does not cast shadows at certain times of the day. If an overhead fixture is the only light source, situate your workstation so that the light shines from behind it.


Conestee Collection by Progress Lighting |Image: K. Hovnanian Homes


While those are the two top tips for a pleasant and comfortable home office space, here’s a few more to try:

  • Don’t set up your computer monitor in front of a window the bright background light shining behind the monitor screen causes eye strain.

  • Place your chair at least an arm’s length away from the screen so that it can be seen without using reading glasses or squinting.

  • Control and enhance ambient light by adding LED tape lighting behind a monitor or under a desk for diffused light

  • Use solar shades on a window to soften the light and lessen heat throughout the day.


This lighting advice can help your day to become more productive and comfortable!

©2018 by Catherine Catozzi.