Posted: Wednesday 3 August 2011
Most of us like to restrict our work to a single area of our houses, offices or our lives - specifically to our desks in most cases. However, as the world becomes more mobile and we have more and more options about how and where we work, the idea of working only at a desk is fast becoming outdated. You need to be able to work away from your desk in order to get the most out of your workday and to give yourself better flexibility in your working life.
At first, it may take some practice. I know that I grew up in a household where homework was done at a desk rather than on the floor, at the kitchen table or even outside. You did your work at your desk, then you left that area in order to enjoy the other areas with the family. It was a way to keep work and work materials contained. While this sounds good in theory, this kind of background made it nearly impossible for me to work anywhere other than in a quiet environment with a desk or table for many years. I could not work on planes, and even had trouble in libraries. I needed isolation and utter silence. If you have similar workspace habits, be patient with yourself. Start out working in slightly uncomfortable places like a coffee shop before you attempt working in the food court at the mall, for example.
Additionally, keep the work that you are doing in mind when you work away from your desk. Remember that not all internet connections are secure. There may be some things that you simply should not "take away" from the office even if you would rather be working elsewhere. Being aware of your environment - but also able to tune it out - will help you determine what types of work you can do away from your desk and also what types of work are appropriate for out-of-office focus. You will love the flexibility that being able to work away from your desk gives you, so definitely give it a shot!