Home Office Decluttering: Top Tips to Keep Your Sanity
Mess in your home office causing you stress? Now that many individuals are working from home, the boundary between home and office sometimes gets blurry—and this does not only pertain to time and activities but also to space. If your home office is starting to look like a jungle and you’re starting to have problem finding where things are, it might be time for some serious decluttering.
People advocating for minimalism have it right—the more visual clutter you see, the more cluttered your mind will be. This is perhaps the most basic of the steps in decluttering: reduce your stuff. However, if you’re not too keen about parting with your things, then keeping them in their respective places or organizing them with the right tools will work, too. Read on to find out more about these steps.
5 Ways You Can Restore Order in Your Home Office
Check out the steps below to help you take control of clutter and allow your work space to finally breathe.
Reduce. Downsize. Remove what you don’t need.
You want your home office to be functional, but you also want it to reflect your style. It’s natural to want to personalize your space by adding, perhaps, a souvenir from a trip you had abroad, or a gift from a special someone.
However, if you find that your office is starting to get littered by all of these things, gathering dust in the corner, or by old equipment that no longer work but you can’t seem to part with, it’s probably time you start taking a closer look at your stuff and decide what must remain in your space and what must be taken out.
As a general rule, take out anything that’s broken beyond repair, anything that you have not used for the past year, and—to borrow from the famous organizing expert, Marie Kondo—anything that no longer sparks joy.
Once you’ve downsized, make the decision to be more mindful about what you add to your space. Empty spaces often subconsciously invite new stuff, so you will need to be extra disciplined in resisting the impulse to fill out an empty space.
Have a space for everything.
Books are for bookshelves. Small articles are for your drawer. Your files are for your filing cabinet. And so on.
If there are stuff in your home office that are too important to get rid of but are causing clutter, one way to deal with them is to find them a home. Storage drawers and cabinets work well for this purpose.
A glass bookshelf will help keep your books free from dust while giving you easy view of what you have in your collection. A wheeled file cabinet will provide sufficient storage and will be easy to move around when you’re redecorating. A drawer will allow you to store small articles that tend to litter your desk—out of sight, out of mind, out of your worry.
If you need extra room, one good option is to use vertical space. Stack a small and portable storage on top of your existing big drawer. Or, replace your low desk with a high desk or a standing desk to take advantage of the space underneath.
Put things back in their proper places.
This seems like a no-brainer, but you’ll be surprised how clutter accumulates because people forget to put things where they belong. And the tricky part is, once an area accumulates a piece of stray clutter or two, it’s so easy to attract more clutter.
Check if there’s an area in your home office where clutter seems to accumulate. Is there a table there that looks like it’s become a dumping area for things you have taken out of their shelf and forgotten to return? Deal with that table right away, put things back where they belong, and make sure you return them there whenever you take them out.
It’s a small everyday gesture that takes very little effort but will go a long way in keeping your space clutter free and yourself stress free.
Bills, documents, files—these are among the most common clutter you will find in home offices today. And, they can get overwhelming when they pile up on you.
Say goodbye to paper by going digital—you will not only rid your space of clutter but will also contribute to saving mother earth. Start by doing away with paper bills. Sign up for e-statements for your regular payables. Do you really need your monthly magazine subscription, or can you go for e-newsletter or e-magazine copies? And, if you have paper files that you think you may need for future use or reference, scan them and keep the digital copy with you.
Once you’re done downsizing, make sure you correctly file whatever is left. And, one important thing to remember when decluttering and getting rid of your paper files is to shred them properly, especially if these are sensitive files that may have personal information that you wouldn’t want to get their hands on.
Invest in smart office tools.
If you want to go the extra mile and check how else you can further declutter and organize your space, you may want to consider investing in smart office tools.
These organizers come in different types, from clips to hoses and sleeves to complete organizer boxes. They are designed to provide a specific place for your cables, keeping them from straying and cluttering your space while protecting them from premature damage.
These are simple mechanisms designed to securely hold your monitor and reposition them above your desk or at an angle to provide you the best view while freeing up space in your desk for all your other office items.
Under Desk Drawers
These also come in different types and sizes, from small drawers for your writing materials to bigger drawers that can accommodate a variety of office paraphernalia. Most of these are easy to install; just make sure to choose one that is compatible with your existing desk.
Decluttering can appear like a gigantic task, so many people put them off until the clutter continues to increase and the task looks even more daunting. If you’re currently in the middle of a decluttering woe, don’t panic and remember that you can start small. Follow the tips we shared above on home office decluttering, one step at a time, until you have dealt with all the clutter and can freely breathe again. All the best in your decluttering journey!
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