In my 17-year career, I’ve never had a home office. Working from home, or bringing work home, usually meant sitting on my living room couch with my laptop. There was a period of time at Intel where I had a treadmill desk set up in my bedroom for those days when I worked from home. Over the last five months, I have conducted coaching calls from (what I’ll call the) ‘bonus room,’ which was intended as a gym but was more like a catch-all storage room.
It’s interesting what your environment can do for your mental state. I often coach clients around their living space and what they want to change about it. Doing the work on myself, I realized that the bonus room as it was made me anxious. As such, I stared out the windows rather than look at the helter-skelter pile of boxes and random items on plastic shelves. Being committed to coaching and holding an emotional space for my clients also means committing to my own peaceful environmental space.
Once my husband and I were in agreement on how to utilize this room, taking action has gone fairly quickly. I was amazed that although the flooring retailer estimated one-to-three weeks before the flooring would be delivered to their warehouse, it actually only took two days. We were quite efficient in ripping out the carpet and installing vinyl wood flooring.
Seeing the room start to transform, I’ve had a surge of energy to visualize and design the layout of my office.
(Please excuse my amateur drawing skills, which are certainly not to scale.)
The former closet can easily transform into the seated desk area large enough for our two monitors.
We have a large Mac desktop computer that we use for post-processing, and storage of, our photos along with another screen for me to plug my laptop into when my legs have done enough walking for the day. We can install shelving units above this space for my books and other office supplies.
In the space behind this closet desk, my treadmill desk fits perfectly. I love this desk. Walking at 1.9-2.0 miles per hour is slow enough to maintain relaxed breathing and a good pace for my body to go into auto-pilot and not require any thought. As a fidgeter, this allows my mind to be more focused and present. Physically, it keeps my blood and energy flowing. You’d be surprised at how many steps (and miles) you can go without even cognitively realizing it.
Along the far wall, there is enough space to put a love seat. Ideally, it would be a pullout sofa bed for the few times a year when we have more than two overnight guests. This will also be my meditation couch for my morning mindfulness. And of course, Tucker (who has a bed in every room of the house) would also have his bed for the times when he can quietly sleep next to me while I work.
On the walls I envision hanging inspirational quotes and our Eight Core Coaching Values*:
- Live it to give it.
- Be T.A.O. (Transparent, Authentic & Open – Know what you know. Feel what you feel. Say what you mean. Do no harm.)
- Show up to give attention, not to get attention.
- Don’t be the light; be the window.
- “Exist in perpetual creative response to whatever is present.” ~ Yogi Amrit Desai
- Be the untroubled space for your troubled client.
- Enlightenment tastes like freedom.
- Coaching is subtracting, not adding.
This will be my haven, my safe space for both my own spiritual journey as well as where I can metaphorically provide value number 6 (above) for my clients. My vision for my coaching business is coming together and this brings me great joy!
*The 8 Core Coaching Values are taken from the Martha Beck Institute for Life Coaching, at which I am in training. Copyright 2017 Martha Beck, Inc.