Dressing for Work in Your Home Office

More and more people are working from home whether they are solo entrepreneurs or they have the option of conducting some of their business off-site a few days a week. It’s easy to stay in your pajamas or workout clothes all day, but is that really the best uniform for you?

The home office certainly has a more casual dress code. But to eliminate it all together could be a mistake. Paying attention to your grooming and your attire even if no one will see you could give you a structure to your workday that benefits you and increases your productivity.
The routine of getting ready for work is one worth keeping even if you’ve moved your office into a spare bedroom.

Did you have a morning routine when you used to drive to the office? Keep a part of it or all of it. Take the time to shower or wash your face. Apply makeup, even if it’s minimal, to make you feel like you’re showing up to your work projects looking sharp. Get dressed for the day before you get sucked into email.

Even though the distance to your office may be seven steps to the spare bedroom, don’t skimp on your morning “me” time. Have your cup of tea or coffee. Read the paper or something inspiring. Review your goals or affirmations. Have something to eat. Prepare to go to work.

When it comes to getting dressed, don’t pull clothes from your workout pile or grab something that’s been tossed into the back of your closet. Be intentional. If you want to make a bridge from your home life to your work life, use the language of clothes to make the point that you’re going to work. Instead of throwing on an old T-shirt, wear a non-iron shirt instead. Don’t wear that cardigan with the missing buttons; wear one of your nicer ones.
Wear your trimmer jeans, not your sloppy pajama bottoms. Wear comfy shoes instead of slippers.

If you’re unclear about the clothing boundaries for home office use, imagine yourself in these three scenarios.

You’re expecting something in the mail and your mailbox is 20 feet from your door. You’re in your work-at-home attire. Would you be mortified if a neighbor greeted you at your mailbox?

A friend knows you’re working from home today and calls you near noon with a last minute lunch invitation. Would you be able to say yes, jump in the car as soon as you hung up the phone, and head to the restaurant?

Your boss sends an email blast and wants to set up a videoconference in thirty minutes. Are you scrambling to pull a look together or are you focused on the work agenda so you can be sharp and ready?

You have the freedom to create your own dress code. What works for you? Maybe you say yes to jeans and pair them with a nice no-iron shirt and roll up the sleeves, or maybe you pair with a silky jersey T-shirt, a navy easy-fit cotton blazer, and nice shoes. Maybe you say no to jeans and prefer a simple dress, boots and a long necklace or chino slacks, a polo shirt, and sneakers.

Your work attire deserves thoughtfulness and respect. If you’d like help developing yours, just give me a call. I’d love to support you!

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