By Janet Adetu
What image does your desk portray? Does your desk speak volumes?
Are you showing the image of squeaky clean, neat and tidy or a bundle of confusion?
Can you actually see through your pile of files or do you waste precious time looking for important documents sitting right there on your overflowing desk?
A lot of time is wasted when documents are piled on top of each other, the ones that have and have not been attended to. This creates disorderliness in the midst of a very busy scheduled day. The image you portray on your desk is a true reflection of you, it tells us your personality, character, style and living condition.
Some people like to work under pressure, what seems to others like a bundle of confusion, this is when they thrive with better results. The average person though needs clarity of mind to function well. Whether you are at work in your own cubicle or on your desk in you designated corner or office this is your space, your comfort zone for a certain number of hours a day.
At times to feel good in your own space and comfort zone you are prone to decorating it with family pictures, flowers, favourite magazines, sweets, biscuits, multiple stationary and much more. But why crowd your space and use it as storage when time is indeed money, and the poor usage of time in your space means the loss of money.
If you are a victim that needs your space revamped or systematically looked after you may decide to hire a personal assistant to assist you or become your very own personal organizer. Let me share some strategies for organizing your space and becoming more productive.
Tips for Revamping Your Space
- Refuse that Rubbish
Sounds like common sense but believe it or not refuse bins can be a difficult item to find beside some peoples desk. From your sweet wrappers to used envelopes to condemned paper you name it bin it if you are done with it. Do not use your desk as bait for keeping trash, this indicates that you are rough, untidy and do not pay attention to your grooming and cleanliness.
- Shred the Shreddable
Many times you print documents and articles the ones you need and do not need, the tendency is that this paper accumulates occupying valuable space on your desk. It is a lot easier if you engage in the exercise of shredding immediately, separating the necessary from the unnecessary. Alternatively invest in a bin for papers you intend to recycle.
iii. Organic Organizing
You now realize you need structure around your desk as work has become so what overwhelming. Let’s start with this formula:
- Incoming Box:
Put documents that don’t yet have a place here. This may be items like memos, print-outs, and random things placed on your desk by random people.
- Incubate box :
These are items you are not yet ready to do or complete. They may be articles you are thinking of reading, sketches for potential projects, and information about events you might attend.
- Action Box:
You can put papers requiring an action that takes more than two minutes in here. These may be items such as forms to fill out and documents to proofread.
d.Ongoing Project Box:
This box is for active projects that are still ongoing or nearing completion, a file per project is ideal.
Put competed projects, general reference items, and anything else you might want to look at again in a filing cabinet. Use simple, flat folders organised from A-Z.
- Pack those Pens:
Why do you need so many pens? Throw them all out except for two or three. If it doesn’t have a cap, toss it.
- Banish the Books
We all love reading books but how many can you read at the same time. Keep your books in your bag since office time is a no no for reading time.
VII. Desktop Dining
Eating at your desk encourages trash like paper bags, cups, and utensils to stick around your desk. To prevent this, eat somewhere else – preferably out of the office. Doing this also allows you a mental break from work where you can enjoy your meal and give yourself a few moments for your brain to rest and revitalize.
VIII. Photo Phobia
The presence of pictures brings life to your space as well as keeps our loved ones in mind at all times. It becomes a nuisance when you have four pictures and more all-around unless they are placed in other parts of your office like the wall.
- Reorganize, Review & Re-energize
Schedule time to clean your desk at the end of each day. It is a great idea to get into the habit or organizing your desk regularly at least every week, bi-weekly and or monthly. With this regular review you will feel energized to start a fresh day and week ahead. Be mindful of confidential information lying around. Do not leave the cleaner to his / her discretion when it comes to refiling files and repacking papers, you run the risk of losing important ones and misplacement of crucial documents.
I would love you to share your experience with me.