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Maximize your small space

(NC) Unless you’re living in a seven-bedroom mansion, chances are you’re like most Canadians: trying to make the most of your small living space. From studio apartments to three-bedroom family homes, most of us are craving more space, particularly when home is also the office.

Maximizing your small space to include an office is not an insurmountable challenge. With the right tools and a little planning, you can bring the benefits of a much larger space to wherever you work.

1. Get a desk that works
Though you may love the look of something larger, chances are you can make do with a compact desk. Measure your workstation and see what makes sense, taking into account the space you want versus what you actually need. Pro tip: an adjustable standing desk can give you the option to stretch your legs throughout the day.

2. Invest in an ergonomic chair
Considering this is where you’ll be sitting for eight hours a day, investing in the right chair is crucial. Find something with various controls so you’re at a comfortable height, with feet flat on the floor and elbows and wrists straight when typing.

3. Clear the clutter
Extra pens and pencils, papers, folders, and empty coffee mugs and dishes…when you’re working in a small space, every item takes up room both physically and mentally. Combine regular work breaks with bringing dishes to the kitchen and store loose items in a box or drawer.

4. Put two screens in one
Multiple screens were great at the office, but at home, it’s rare to have the space for extra monitors. The LG UltraWide monitor has a single stand and curved screen which can show multiple windows at once, making it easier for you to multitask at work.

5. Make use of sleek backgrounds
By now, we’ve all seen the hilarious (and not-so-hilarious) backgrounds available for virtual calls. While they can be entertaining, they also serve a helpful purpose: hiding your unmade bed, scattered kid toys and dirty dishes.

Using your space wisely will contribute to a more relaxing and productive work environment so that at the end of the day you can reconnect with family, friends or your adorable pup. To check out more productivity solutions, visit lg.ca. 

 
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Downsizing tips for happiness in a smaller space

(NC) Downsizing for retirement can relieve stress and help you focus on what is truly important. Whether you feel ready for the change or you’re a little nervous to plant roots somewhere new, here are some tips for a smooth and easy transition.

Start decluttering now
Even if you don’t plan to move for some time, it’s worth cutting down on your clutter. Begin thinking about items you really want to keep forever, such as your mother’s china. If those antique dishes mean a lot to you, keep them for your next place and plan to actually use them. If they are just taking up space, recognize that and don’t feel bad about finding them a new home. Beginning to tackle this step now will save you last minute stress and guilt when it comes time to move.

Consider your lifestyle
Are you looking to leave behind the hustle and bustle of city life? Or, are you excited by the option of walking to nearby shops and activities in an area where you don’t have to rely on a car? Will your new pad be the home base for a rotation of visiting family or are you planning to live the more nomadic life of the frequent traveller? Consider your physical, social, and personal needs as you think about how and where to live in retirement.

Use all tools available 
There are many options and considerations when creating a retirement plan, so use all the resources available to help you make an informed decision for your golden years. For example, you can use free census data to learn about a potential new community before moving there. You can find useful details on population, age and types of dwellings in different places. Specifically, you’ll be able to see if there is a higher concentration of seniors or lots of young children, along with the type of housing in your target area. It’s a great way to learn more about a place before you move there.

Find more information at statcan.gc.ca/census.

 
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3 affordable ways to create a home office that works for you

(NC) This year’s home must-have is an office space that offers flexibility to go seamlessly from video calls to virtual classroom to everything in between. To help you create a workspace that works for you, Sharon Grech, Benjamin Moore colour and design expert, shares three affordable tips to create a stylish office no matter your style or budget.

Choose colours that promote productivity.

Struggling to find focus when working from home? Your wall colour can help promote a sense of calm and concentration to help you through your busiest days. “Tints and shades of green such as Spa AF-435 or Flora AF-470 can help foster a sense of calm and support your productivity,” recommends Grech.

Giving your home office a coat of green paint is a project you can do yourself, and the increased focus and reduction in eye strain will help you work smarter all year long.

Make room for your workspace.

If you don’t have a dedicated home office, you can easily create a place where you can focus by making a work area in your home. A floating shelf or a side table can double as a compact desk in small spaces. Once you select where you want to set up your workspace, clean up any clutter that could be distracting. Grech suggests shopping your home for baskets, mason jars and catch-alls to store office supplies such as notebooks, pens and loose papers.

Create a chic background.

On video calls all day? You can create an envy-inducing backdrop in just one weekend by painting out a bookcase, including the backs of shelves, in one solid hue like Amazon Soil 2115-30. Grech recommends choosing a durable paint designed to adhere to wooden surfaces such as Advance interior paint for results as professional as your new office. Once dry, position your bookcase, with styled shelves of books and decorative objects, behind you for a put-together background.

 
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