A well-organized office can make working from home a breeze. But just how do you go about finding storage solutions that are both attractive and effective? Read on – it’s easier than you think!
The Psychology of Tidying
If you find yourself stuck in a rut at your home office, organizing your space might be the last thing on your mind. You’re too busy trying to get stuff done to care about what your office looks like, right? Turns out, efficiency and cleanliness kind of go hand in hand. Office organization isn’t just about aesthetics.
While some say that a messy desk is the sign of a creative mind, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by clutter.
Logistically, time spent digging through piles on a messy desk is time lost. Your precious working hours could be better spent doing other things. But beyond that, clutter is a constant visual reminder of disorganization that affects our cognitive abilities and breaks our focus. To make matters worse, it increases stress and anxiety, which is especially unhelpful in an already anxious time.
Feeling overwhelmed by mess can even trigger procrastination through coping and avoidance strategies, including—you guessed it—tidying up. So why not take the time and commit yourself to a cleanup? By doing it now, you can get back to focusing on what really matters.
With that in mind, here are a few of our favorite tips and tricks for getting the most out of your home office space.
The Room Where It Happens
When it comes to getting stuff done, it’s a lot easier to be productive in a room where you can focus on the task at hand. This just means that kitchens, living rooms, and other general-use spaces aren’t exactly ideal for office work. This is especially true if you have children; they tend to be bustling, noisy, and have little respect for privacy. It’s best to have a space you can dedicate to office work so you can keep all of your things in one place and leave all your work behind a closed door at the end of the day.
Another thing to consider when designing your home office – natural light increases productivity. While it’s not really feasible to choose a home office based solely on window size, if you do have windows, let the light in! Open the drapes, get translucent blinds, or use mirrors to bounce natural light around the space. You may be surprised by the amount of good sunlight can do for you!
Clean It Up
Throw away the junk mail, newspapers, to-go coffee cups, and any other garbage you can find. Remember, this isn’t a Marie Kondo situation: we’re cleaning, not gutting. If you need it, stow it. We’ll talk about that next.
By getting rid of extraneous papers and forgotten junk hiding in your office, you’re laying a clean foundation for the next stage.
Stow It Away
The key element of the office cleanup is reorganizing. Everything in your office should have a home. Designate baskets and bins for certain items. You could have one for writing utensils, one for large office supplies, one for paper, and so on.
If you don’t have shelving or storage units, now may be a good time to invest in some. Here are a few ideas:
- A rolling drawer unit that fits under your desk
- A corner shelf
- A bookcase
- A filing cabinet
- Floating shelves over your desk
- A long shelving unit
Store materials for current projects close at hand. Papers that you don’t need or don’t use often can get stowed in banker boxes and put away accordingly. If you’re looking to pretty things up a bit, there are cute baskets and wicker bins you can buy at places like IKEA. Just slot your banker boxes inside for a quick and easy fix.
Be sure to also get some little organizational solutions for your desk, things like inbox/outbox containers, stacking letter trays, upright organizers, and a cup for your pens and pencils. Trays tend to fill up quickly. Organize them by the level of urgency and whether they are to be addressed, filed, or recycled. Keep garbage and recycling bins on hand, so things don’t get messy again, and top it all off with a weekly or monthly organizer.
If you’re prepared to commit to office organization, J.T. McDermott can help you get it done. To take the first step to designing your ideal home office, connect with us today. We’re ready when you are.