Three Rules of Work:
Out of clutter find simplicity;
From discord find harmony;
In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.
Have you ever found yourself working along, either in your office or in your home, and you notice your hand keeps bumping against something while you are trying to write? Your keyboard is rocking with each stroke? You cannot find your favorite____? You have a five feet of desk with about 2 feet of working space, with a growing pile of papers on the side of your non-dominant hand? Maybe its just me. But, often the things we love, or think we have to have, quickly become just another piece of clutter that has no permanent home, and possibly no real place in our lives anymore. But, we hang onto them. We shuffle them around. And, we waste precious time and energy trying to make room to get our important work done.
Clutter is everywhere! And, without making the time to organize your workspace, it can begin to feel cluttered pretty quickly.
This would not be so much of an issue if all that stuff actually helped us to be more productive. But you know, all too well, that all those things are productivity killers. In reality, a clutter-free space is a productive space. You would be able to find things more quickly, and get more done without feeling overwhelmed or overly-frustrated. The same applies to your mind. Once you remove some of the distracting clutter, you can begin to see and think more clearly, and more creatively.
You know that you need to make some changes to your organizational habits if you see piles and piles of papers, files, or junk in every nook and cranny. Once the clutter takes over your workspace it is time for you to take the paper/ clutter beast by its proverbial horns and fight back with some organizational plan!
Creating your clutter-free office
A clutter-free office space will begin, like everything else we do, with the desire to get rid of the clutter. Every morning make it a top priority to put away (or toss) ten things that are not in the right place, or that don’t seem to have a home any longer. You can use this strategy anywhere in your life. Would it be more useful at home, in your car, or someplace else at work. And you will begin to notice a huge difference in your day-to-day functioning. If you are feeling charged up and truly motivated, try removing 20 or more pieces of clutter. Think of how many pieces of clutter you could eliminate if you spent just 15 minutes (to 30 minutes) on the situation!
You will also need to come up with a filing system for your papers. Paper is often the worst of all the clutter culprits. The solution can be as simple as having “in”, “out”, and “to be filed” boxes. Getting the paperwork up and off your desk will change the whole look and feel of your space.
Put things where they will serve you best. Need lots of pens and pencils. Get a container for the top of your desk, or the top drawer by your dominant hand. Need to read while you are doing something else? Get a book-stand and use it properly. I personally like this one, and have given several as gifts:
Your computer too….
Make sure that your computer is also clutter-free. It is remarkably easy to store just about everything on your computer. But this does not take away from the fact that it is still clutter. Toss those unused icons from your desktop, empty your recycle bin, and make sure you check for viruses and spyware to ensure that your computer is running smoothly. If your have a theme between several things, make a folder. Having virtual clutter on your computer will slow you down and distract you just as much as having real clutter in your office.
If most of us enjoyed cleaning, we’d have clear spaces all the time. But the truth is that we don’t!
Start slowly, but deliberately. Take 15 minutes every day to remove some stuff. That means toss, pack up for Goodwill, place where it belongs, scan into your computer, whatever.
Just 15 minutes. You will be amazed at the results as the weeks go by.
Figure out what works for your!
You need space to think and create. You must take on the responsibility of making that happen. If you need to hire help, do it.
Free yourself from the unnecessary shackles of clutter and paper. Make space to breathe.
Disclaimer: Yes, that is an affiliate link to the book-stand.