Spring has officially sprung as Friday the 20th was the first day of spring. You are probably spending your work days gazing at the window admiring the spring weather, only to glance around your office and suddenly realize it is a mess. The spring sun tends to bring out all the clutter and bad habits that winter has allowed. Not to worry, the season gives you an excuse to start spring cleaning your workspace for a healthier and more productive day.
The clutter on, in and around your desk is not just an eyesore – it actually hurts your productivity and the productivity of others around you. The National Association of Professional Organizers reported that being disorganized can waste 4.3 hours a week. This is because you are stressed and frustrated trying to find something you need and the cluttered spaces reduce creativity and concentration.
Seeing all of this mess is daunting, but manageable. Start by purging everything that is outdated or irrelevant. This is a great time to use the office shredder. Neatly file papers in a file cabinet or scan them to add to your computer files. Clean out your drawers and make piles of things you want to keep and toss the rest.
Reorganize and Rethink
Now that you have purged, it is time to reconsider how you will organize your workspace. Drawers should have organizational tools to keep all of your items easy to find. Forbes details why your desktop is not an additional storage space and recommend only keeping the essentials on your desk. They also suggest removing all items from the floor. Keeping things on the floor will make it cluttered quickly.
Additionally, you should rethink how your desk organization impacts your productivity. Bryan Barnville wrote a LinkedIn article that gives excellent tips on reducing distractions. Things that are a distraction, like your cell phone, should have a drawer to be placed in when you are feeling inattentive. Designate a workspace away from your workspace that is private and quiet if you are in an open office and need laser-focus. Barnville also suggests using PC and Mac apps that take away distractions, such as social media.
Clean It Up
Hopefully your desktop is clear after reorganizing, so it should be easy to clean it and other common workplace items. It is easy to neglect cleaning the workspace since you get focused on your assigned work. But there are health dangers to a dirty workspace. Breathing in a lot of dust can cause allergy-like symptoms that hurt how well you work. Constant dust inhalation can also cause diseases to develop over time. Regular cleaning of your workspace is important to keep your air quality at its best. Dust your desktop, clean your office chair and sanitize your keyboard, mouse and office phone frequently.
Spring is a time of renewal, so once your desk is cleaned and organized, it is time to personalize it. Update any office art you have around your workspace. Add a plant to further benefit your health and productivity. Find things that motivate you or make you happy to place around your workspace. These individual changes will make your workday worlds better and give you time to stop and smell the spring roses.