Whether you work from home every day or you just have a home office you work in occasionally, you've got to be organized. Without a good organization plan, you'll never be able to work as efficiently as you could. If you spend more time searching for a place to sit or looking for an empty space to make some notes, it's time for a new plan.
But first, let's get all those excuses out of the way!
After all, organizing isn't exactly the most fun project in the world. That's why so many people make up excuses to get out of doing it! If you've ever said to yourself organizing your home office would actually make it harder for you to find things later, you're guilty of this excuse-making. And, in the meantime, you're wasting a whole lot of time digging around and telling yourself "I know it's here someplace!"
So, let's get out of excuse mode and into organization mode! Here are some great (and easy!) ways to do it:
- Divide the work into manageable areas.
If your home office is overwhelmed with clutter, accept the fact you're not going to get everything organized at once (or in one day!). Instead, divide the task into individual areas so you don't give up when you try to conquer an entire mountain of work.
- Have a variety of storage options.
Things like file folders and storage bins are worth their weight in gold in a well-organized home office. If you have plenty of both on hand when you begin, you won't have to go back and reorganize anything later. Instead, you'll be able to create a place for everything, and everything will be in its place. Doesn't that sound great?!
Want to accentuate the "home" in your home office? Opt for wicker baskets instead of storage bins. That way, you'll be organized and stylish!
- Stick to the six month rule.
If you haven't referred to a piece of paper, file, or notepad in the last six months, throw it away. The only exception to this rule is legal and tax documents, which belong in their own long-term file folder or bin.
- Organize, don't read.
If you read every word on every piece of paper you put away, you'll never get through everything! Instead, skim quickly, decide if you need it (and where it goes), and move on. You can do some more in-depth reading later if you want.
- Reserve your desktop for essentials.
A cluttered desktop will make your entire work day feel cluttered. So, only keep things on your desk you absolutely need like your phone, computer, calculator, and basic office supplies like pens and paper clips. (And, yes, a family photo is definitely an essential that belongs here, too!)
- Take advantage of your desk drawers.
A clean desktop isn't the only thing that'll make your home office look and feel better. Clean desk drawers provide a ton of storage space, so they need to be carefully organized too!
- Keep it simple.
There's no point in creating a filing system if it's too complicated to remember! Keep your organizational efforts simple. In fact, you may want to store things in clear containers or label your bins with big, bold letters to make things even easier to find later.
- Create a to-do list.
Once your home office is organized, you can organize each individual day with a to-do list! That way, you'll be able to keep track of everything and enjoy the sense of accomplishment when you get to cross each item off the list.
- Reward yourself.
Once you've got all of this organizing done, give yourself a pat on the back! Then, be sure to keep everything neat and tidy. Even just five minutes of straightening up at the end of your workday can make your entire office look and feel better. That way, you can approach every day with the surge of energy you're feeling right now!
One more tip:
- Beautify your surroundings in every possible way.
In As a Grain of Mustard Seed, Wallace D. Wattles wrote:
"Every mental worker should make his workshop as beautiful and pleasant as he possibly can; his work cannot fail to be the better for the suggestions coming from lovely surroundings."
In fact, he went on to say:
"And really, this should be true of all workers; money could not be better invested than in beautifying and making pleasant the factories and workshops where the masses of the people work with their hands for daily bread. Art and beauty should receive as much consideration in building a factory as in building a church."
By the way, if you're not familiar with it, I've frequently described As a Grain of Mustard Seed by Wallace D. Wattles as a fictional case study of the practical application of Wallace D. Wattles' scientific principles for getting what you want in life. If you haven't already read it, I suggest you do. Click or tap the links below to get your copy today.
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Click or tap here to get As a Grain of Mustard Seed along with eleven other rare books and articles by Wallace D. Wattles in paperback on Amazon.