Coming into the office and sitting down at a cluttered desk can often lead to a cluttered mind, disorganization and even a lack of motivation. It only takes a few minutes to tidy up your workspace, and you’ll feel much better about starting a day’s work when everything’s in its place. Here’s how to clean out your desk and keep it organized throughout the year:
It’s easy to let papers stack up on your desk, and it’s definitely something I’ve been guilty of. I convince myself that I need to hold onto that particular document for some reason, but then I end up not needing it ever again. Take a moment to recycle any paperwork that you haven’t glanced at in the last 12 months. File the documents you do need into the appropriate folders or bins so you’ll know exactly where they are. If you have papers that are used solely for reference, take a picture of them so they’re stored in your phone instead of on your desk.
You can also minimize how much paper you have coming to your desk by giving up any unnecessary subscriptions or switching to digital memos instead of paper ones. Sign up for electronic bill payments instead of paper ones. These simple switches will leave you with significantly less paper to sort through at the end of each week.
Get rid of excessive items
Go through your desk and take note of what items you use on a regular basis, and which ones you don’t. If you have hundreds of rubber bands, but never use them, why are they in there? Rid your drawers of excessive pens, rubber bands, paper clips, etc., to make room for supplies that you actually do need.
Once all of the papers have been cleared off the surface of your desk, break out the cleaning supplies. Use disinfectant wipes on everything, including your mouse and keyboard. It’s amazing how many germs can accumulate on your desk over time. You might also want to clean out your keyboard using an air spray to remove any dirt, crumbs and other debris that may be sitting in there. Dust your computer screen and any other electronics with a microfiber cloth and vacuum the floors around and under your desk.
Take note of what you’re running low on, whether it’s sticky notes, paper clips or thank you cards. Jot down a list of the supplies you need and plan a trip to the store to pick them up so you always have what you need on-hand.
Create a weekly maintenance schedule
Wouldn’t it be nice to have your desk looking this clean for the rest of the year? It can stay that tidy if you put a daily or weekly maintenance plan in place. For instance, maybe you plan to wipe down your desk and keyboard every Friday, and you go through the stacks of paper on your desk every Wednesday. If you keep up with the cleaning schedule, you won’t have to dedicate an entire day to decluttering. You may want to keep a trash can and recycling bin within reach so it’s always easy to toss items you don’t need anymore.
Eat away from your desk
You sit at your desk all day, so when it’s time to eat lunch, get out of the office for a bit. Not only will stepping out of the office leave you refreshed for the rest of the work day, it will prevent you from getting crumbs all over your desk and keyboard.