So, which is it? Do we spend half our lives in our bed or at our work desk? The way things are going, the work desk might edge out the bed for the highest number of hours.
And since we tend to roll with the punches and “survive” every day, we’re all scraping by and doing what we must do to multitask our days away.
Meanwhile, anyone who takes the time to clean their workspace can’t deny the psychological benefits and increased productivity that comes with it.
If you can spare a meager hour or two one afternoon and use the time to create an organized office, you won’t regret it. Here’s how to master desk organization in nine easy steps.
1. Purge Your Work Desk
If you’re looking at a mountain of chaos, it can seem overwhelming. Where do you start with a waterfall of papers and a scatter of pens? Well, there’s only one palace to start.
Purge the entire desk. Remove everything from the desktop and every drawer. Toss it all in a pile on the floor and then work through each item, one at a time.
Create a file for every sheet of paper and put it where it belongs – even if it’s the shredder. Organize all those desk accessories i.e., pens, pencils, and paper clips.
Then, set up your computer however you’ll be most comfortable and take a moment to pat yourself on the back. That’s what a desk is supposed to look like!
2. Get Out Your Labels and Cords
Here’s one way to manage all those cords. Label each one. Whether you use a bread tag or a piece of tape, take the time to label each and every cord, from the desk lamp to the keyboard.
This will allow you to be clear about which cord belongs to which device, should you ever have to move things around. Once you’ve done that, consider bundling all those cords with a zip tie.
3. Consider Cord Covers
Have you ever seen someone’s TV mounted to the wall, only to follow a trail of cords down the wall? It’s so unsightly when compared to that gorgeous TV mounted like a Picasso.
The same can be said for those cords hanging off your desk, even if you’ve gone a step further and tied them all together. A cord cover is a simple white piece of plastic that you can feed all your cords through.
Now, you have a seamless white line across your desk and down to the outlet, as opposed to an exposed tangle of cords.
If you need any elbow joints or harmonized cables, you can learn more about them here (while you impress your co-workers with your top shelf cord creativity).
4. Consider a Docking Station
This may be the crown jewel to all your “cord-hiding” attempts. Consider a docking station. They come in so many shapes and sizes.
A docking station allows you to place a colorful box atop your desk and feed all your wires into the docking station that cleverly hides your surge protector strip. It’s a self-contained miracle.
Of course, you can lose an entire afternoon scrolling through Amazon searching for the perfect docking station. Or, you can turn a quiet Saturday afternoon into a DIY paradise and make your own.
5. Dream Big for a Wireless Paradise
All these hacks work wonderfully to contain the cord chaos we face. But, whats the end game? The end game should be a wireless paradise.
Nowadays, wireless keyboards are increasingly affordable. The same goes for your mouse or trackpad. Laptops are holding their charges for longer periods of time.
If it needs a wire, someone out there is working on the wireless technology for it. So, set aside a ten spot each paycheck to invest in a future desk, free from cords and zip ties.
6. Consider How You File
How did it feel after your desk purge? Pretty good, right? It’s spring cleaning for the place where we spend a huge chunk of our lives.
You certainly want to maintain those files as you go. Don’t fall back into the habit of tossing a paper into some bottomless bin and then forgetting about them. File things immediately when they come your way.
Or, is there a better way? What if you removed all paper and clutter from your desk and scanned every item into a digital file? Those meeting minutes can be scanned; those invoices and receipts can be scanned. We live in an age of mobile banking anyway. Why not digitize financial records, too?
7. Use Other Spaces
Is your desk positioned next to a window? Use that windowsill for your pen holder or your mug warmer (which undoubtedly comes with another cord).
Or, are you cornered up against a wall? We can get crazy creative with wall space. From the obvious corkboard to the less obvious hanging file system, you can use wall space to hang all kinds of goodies, thus freeing up your desk space.
So, as you’re reorganizing your belongings post-purge, look at the world around you and consider how far you can spread your wings.
8. Buy a Succulent
Okay; we know. Why would you introduce new clutter into a streamlined desk space? Well, the truth is, we can’t be spartan about where we spend the bulk of our time.
So, it doesn’t have to be a succulent, if you have a black thumb. Perhaps it’s a glittery photo frame or a cool lamp featuring an Edison light bulb. But, do dress up your space, even if it’s just one small item that strikes your fancy.
9. Don’t Stop Now
That seemed like a lot, didn’t it? It’s at least an afternoon’s work. So, don’t throw it all away by letting the clutter climb week after week.
Stay on top of that organizing system. Never tell yourself, “I’ll file that later.” No – take the 30 seconds to file things immediately.
If you need to introduce a new cord, hide it in that docking station or bundle it with the rest of the cords immediately. But – whatever you do – don’t stop now!
Work Desk Happiness
And there you have it! With a couple nifty trick, work desk happiness is yours for the taking. Although you can’t see it now, we promise you you’ll feel so much better with a clean and unified space.
Are you ready to ditch one more cord? Check out how ditching cable can help you live happily ever after. Happy cord cutting!