Creating a Healthy Workspace

August 20, 2018

Image via Shutterstock.

Whether you work in a conventional office, your favorite coffee shop, or a home office, it’s important to cultivate a space that allows you to be effective and successful at work.

When creating or reorganizing a workspace, be sure it’s free of clutter and distractions as your surroundings can have a major impact on your productivity and how you feel about your work. Plus, with a well-organized space, you’ll feel in control and be able to focus clearly on tasks that need to be done.

If you’re ready for an office makeover, try these tips to organize and declutter your workspace:

Start from Scratch
Sometimes, the hardest part of a large project like organizing your desk or office is knowing where to start, so it can be helpful to begin with a clean slate. Try emptying your desk and putting everything in a box. Wait until you need an item before putting it back on your desk or in a drawer. If you haven’t used something in a few days, you probably don’t need it. This way, you’ll only be left with the items you regularly need and use!

Get Your Layout Right
Arrange your desk in a way that matches your workflow by setting up “zones” for your daily functions. For example, you may create a working area for your computer and notebook, a “library” for research and reading, a storage area for supplies, and a filing area for archiving past work. Additionally, it’s helpful to place the items you use frequently on your dominant side at arm’s length for easy access.

Light It Up
Your workspace should have at least three points of light: natural, overhead, and desk-level. If you’re lacking natural light, consider adding a floor lamp or an extra desk lamp. Instead of opting for a typical corporate desk lamp, check out the living room department of a home store for a warmer feel that matches your personal style!

Organize Every Day
It’s okay if your workspace gets messy during the day – it means you’re working! But one tactic to prevent clutter is to straighten up your desk every evening before you leave. Dedicating five or ten minutes to organizing at the end of each day will help you start the next day recharged and ready to get to work! It’s also important to disinfect your desk regularly.

Cut Down Your Inbox
Many of us feel like we’re drowning in emails, so decluttering also means cleaning up your inbox. Avoid using your email as a to-do list. Instead of flagging emails unsystematically or marking them as unread until you have time to get to them, set reminders for email follow-up. Similarly, one way to cut back on the number of emails in your inbox is to designate specific times throughout the day to strictly answer emails.

Stop the Digital Clutter
Clutter comes in all shapes and sizes, including on your computer! Keep your desktop free of random files, and organize your folders in a way that’s logical and understandable. Think of it this way – if you didn’t come to work tomorrow, would someone be able to easily find the specific files they’re looking for?

How do you stay organized at work? Let us know in the comments below!

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