Top 10 Tricks To Declutter Your Office
As we wished 2014 goodbye, it is time to embrace 2015 with open arms. And the way to do that is to starting thinking about spring cleaning the office. Yes, I know we are only 2 weeks into January, but it is a good time to get a jump on de-cluttering the office space for greater functionality.
On Forbes.com, they collaborated with organization experts to find the top 10 easiest tips and tricks everyone can use to maintain their offices nice and neat.
- Divide your workspace into zones. Instead of having stuff everywhere cluttering up the space, designate homes for those things that are important to you such as your computer, files, and supply storage. Everything else not deemed important or useful can be tossed out.
- Keep only what you need at arm’s length. Minimize desktop clutter by paring down to the bare essentials. Your computer, phone, a notepad with a couple of pens or pencils, and one or two necessary items that are easily accessible.
- Create a daily paper system. I have to say, I have used this system in the past and it is pretty clever. I used a horizontal file sorter and labeled each one with a weekday. This helped me keep track of daily assignments in one spot instead of all over the desk or in a filing cabinet. Whatever assignments that were not completed, it was moved into the next day to be finished then.
- Establish limits. Once you cleared out the unnecessary clutter and have everything in place, this will be your blank slate moving forward. Have limits on items you have that should not extend further than its container. For example, if you have a bookshelf that is full to capacity, rotate the books out as new ones come in. This way it can remain full without overflowing and become a new cluttered mess.
- Sort your catch all drawer. Let’s face it, the catch all drawer is the black hole of all drawers. No matter if it is at home or at work, the catch all drawer is the most overly abused, and yet, unappreciated piece of cabinetry in the 21st century. Nevertheless, this too can be remedied with thoughtful organization. Insert some dividers or drawer organizers to lessen the chaos and put similar items together. Also do a monthly purge of the catch all and find homes for items that simply fell in.
- Don’t use E-mail as a to do list. Instead use Outlook’s calendar to create to do lists and set appointment reminders for yourself. In the calendar, you can create appointments to yourself or share with others on your team. You can set it to notify anywhere from a week to five minutes prior the start of the task or appointment. What is nice about this feature is that if you ignore the reminder, it will continue to pop up until you either snooze it or dismiss it.
- Streamline your desktop icons. I have to admit, I am guilty of having too many icons cluttering up my desktop. Just as physical clutter can cause stress within us, so can digital clutter. As you maintain the physical clutter you can incorporate the same techniques with your desktop. Create an electronic filing system that will enable you to clear off any unnecessary items off of your desktop. Group similar files into folders and name/date them accordingly.
- Hang hooks for outerwear. Many offices now have an open concept workspace that there is hardly any room to hang your stuff. If your office is equipped with a closet, consider yourself lucky. However, if you’re one of the unlucky ones with nowhere to put your coat or bag except for the floor or draping it over a cubby wall. It may be wise to ask or invest in hooks that attaches to the cubby wall or a communal coat tree. This way your stuff is safe and out of the way.
- Keep a basket or drawer for short term storage. Designate an area for short term items such as newspapers or magazine and rotate them out as the newest one comes in. Or even better, consider subscribing to the online version to eliminate unnecessary paper waste and it can be also saved digitally.
10. Disinfect regularly. Thankfully to the invention of the handy portable disinfecting wipes it is easier to keep a small pack or container at your desk. This helps when you need to clean off your desk, keyboard and mouse whenever it gets dirty or you just need a pop of freshness in your office.
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