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Spring Cleaning For Your Desk

Here are just a few ways that a messy desk can mess you up:

Clutter wastes your time. The average person wastes an hour or more each day just looking for things.

The piles speak to you (maybe even scream!). They speak negative messages like, “You can’t keep up. You are falling behind. You have lost control” etc. What a downer.

The piles speak to others. Messy desks can cause your co-workers, your customers or your boss to question your ability to handle your responsibilities, more business or a promotion.

So does a messy desk matter? You bet it does! Here are some tips to help you spring clean your desk for a fresh start on your workload and peace of mind:

First, yank down and corral all of the notes, post-its, half constructed to-do lists and create one master list

Pile with a purpose! Pick up every piece of paper on your desk to create the following piles:
  • Action pile– items that require you to take action and have a date of follow-up
  • To file pile-(non-action items but must keep as reference material)
  • Belongs somewhere else pile– if it is not yours, get it out of your space.
  • Toss/shred/recycle pile – be ruthless!
  • To-read pile
  • Don’t know yet pile- needs clarification on or requires more thought (there should not be any “action items” in here so getting back to this pile won’t be a top priority).

Get all of these “piles”, except for your “Action” pile, out of your sight for now (put them in the corner, etc. where it can’t be a visual distraction for you). At this point, you should be able to see the light at the end of tunnel!

Round 2, chunk it down even futher. Scan through your list/pile and pull out anything that requires your action for today. Create a new list to focus on for only today’s “to-do” list and record the other tasks to be done on their respective days.

There is, of course, much more we could discuss in regards to getting organization and time management, however, the purpose of this is blog is focused on helping you get the top of your desk back in order.

“A place for everything and everything in its place.” – This is your new mantra! Determine a “home” for everything you need to keep based on how often you need to access it and how much space it requires.

The goal is to make it super simple for you (or anyone else) to know where to find something and where to put it back. Let the power of organization work for you!

--- Kimberly Medlock
Posted: 6/26/2012 2:14:25 PM | with 7 comments
Filed under: big, blog, business, cleaning, clutter, ideas, kimberly, medlock, memphis, mess, organizing, productivity, small, spring

Cincinnati cleaning services
awesome blog, i love reading your posts- you are full of so many cool ideas! keep the posts coming.. i can't wait to try these ideas out!
8/3/2012 1:05:06 PM

Kim Medlock
Hi Christina,
Great comment. Based on the many, many folks that have worked with, this would be the most frequent view.
6/29/2012 2:07:33 PM

Kim Medlock
Thank you for the comment posted from "my sister" :)about how they perceive someone with a clean,organized desk as someone who is rigid and uptight. Its interesting to be aware of how others see things.

I hear often from others that when they see someone with a clean and organized desk and percieve this person as someone that is in control, successfully managing their workload and environment. Something they envy!

The fact is different people have different "comfort levels" when it comes to organization. It's not the same for everyone - we all have our own "comfort level" when it comes to being organized.

The purpose of the blog post was to offer some perspective and suggestions to those that felt their desk/office space was hindering...not helping them achieve their goals and maximize their productivity.

Your point also helps prove the point that people will/do make assumptions about others based on their appearance...including their office/desk.

Happy, healthy, productive workers...helps build a happy, healthy, productive world.

The purpose of the
6/29/2012 2:04:26 PM

I judge people on their desks, too. I always try to clear mine up before I go home for the day with my to-do pile by my mouse. And I think people with a few ordered stacks show great managerial skills. But a super sparse desk shows inability to compromise.
6/28/2012 6:43:49 PM

Kimberly Medlock
Why thank you Gary :).
6/28/2012 3:38:23 PM

Gary Duke
Logical, practical, helpful -- as you are. Thank you, Kimberly!
6/27/2012 8:40:52 PM

I do not agree. A clean, organized desk, where everything has its place, tells me the owner is a little too uptight and rigid.
6/27/2012 2:05:03 PM

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