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Tuesday, February 23 2010

Since we are well into tax season, many people tend to refocus their attention on their workspace where they pay bills, run a home-based business or correspond with friends and family.

For this reason, I thought it appropriate to provide some tips you can use to create an organized and inviting workspace.  After all, who wants to work in a space that is cluttered and, therefore, uninviting? 

Whether you're sitting at the kitchen table writing out bills, working at your desk in the home office, or writing a note to a friend on the computer, a pleasant, organized environment will allow for both productivity and creativity.  Focus on the following suggestions and you will find that the productivity and creativity will become established.

1. Eliminate the chaos.   If you have a disorganized work area, it will reduce the physical space needed for productivity, block your creativity, and increase the chances that you'll lose something which will dramatically increase your stress level. (No one needs more stress.) So, clear the clutter. Provide yourself with plenty of empty space. Keep a wastepaper basket near your workspace to encourage daily decluttering and clean-up.  Don't overload the space with nicknacks and picture frames.  Only keep those few inspirational pieces that you enjoy seeing in view, but out of the way.

2. Stock your workspace for its main functions. Determine what you need to use in the space and plan around that purpose. If you use a desk at home to write out bills, make sure you have a few pens, a calculator, some postage stamps, envelopes, address labels and other necessary supplies right in, or near, that work area. This will help make the task much quicker and easier.  Your filing system should be close by as well.

3. Use those organizing tools. Using appropriate sized baskets, stackable trays, letter trays, pencil holders, paper clip containers, file folders and other organizing tools can help you get your workspace organized. Before buying any of these tools though, be sure to take the time to think about why you need that tool and if the tool you're thinking about is the best one for the job.  For example, a decorative container on your shelf might hold all of your office supplies, but a drawer organizer can allow you to put more like items together for easier access.  

4. Think ergonomics. If you feel physically uncomfortable in your workspace, you will not be able to focus and will therefore be less productive and creative.  Do you suffer from eye strain?  Do your muscles ache from constantly stretching to reach something?  Do your wrists hurt from them being on a wrong angle for too long?  Does your back hurt because your chair is not comfortable?  Then, it's time for you to re-think and rearrange your physical workspace for health and comfort. Make sure there is sufficient lighting conditions. If not, you should consider adding some overhead track lighting or additional lamps that provide good task lighting. If your chair is not right for you, perhaps the seat should be raised or lowered. If your wrist hurts from using the computer mouse, get yourself a mouse pad with cushioning.  Lastly, make sure your computer monitor is positioned correctly, either at or below, eye level, at a comfortable distance.

5. Put stuff away at the end of the day. This is very important!  When you're done using your workspace for the day, put everything back in its place. Don't leave this area in chaos. This way, the next time you return, you'll have an inviting space that will allow you to get down to work without delay.  Who wants to start working in a chaotic and cluttered environment? 

If you follow these simple tips, you will find that you will have an organized and inviting workspace in which to work.

If you are feeling overwhelmed with the prospect of getting organized, however, don't hesitate to contact me.  I will be glad to get you on the road to life long organization.

In the meantime, have a great week!

Posted by: Audrey Cupo AT 02:21 pm   |  Permalink   |  2 Comments  |  Email
Great tips! I also keep a supply of AA batteries in my desk drawer, which can be used in my wireless mouse and my label maker. Now when a battery dies, I don't have to interrupt my work to go and find one, or worse, discover that we have no spares.
Posted by Janet Barclay on 03/02/2011 - 12:11 PM
Thanks Janet! Love your suggestion. I will incorporate it into my own home office space as well as those of my clients.
Posted by Audrey on 03/02/2011 - 02:15 PM

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