Tips for Organizing Your Home Office.

Because we are away camping this week, the following is a guest post from Emily over at Remodeling This Life. If you like what you see here, won’t you consider subscribing to her feed?

Is your workspace chaotic? Can’t find things when you need them? Are you wasting time and feeling stressed because your home working environment is cluttered? Here are a few tips to get you started toward making your space work for you so you can be more efficient and productive in your home office.

Select your location – don’t set your home office up in a secluded area of the house if that isn’t where you are going to be comfortable. If you need to be separate and secluded, then by all means do that. But don’t just choose the first available space. If you’ll work better at a small table in the kitchen or dining room, then set yourself up there. Just remember that you are choosing where you’ll spend a lot of your day. Make it a place you want to be.

Clear your space – before your start sorting, tossing, adding, or anything else – remove everything from your workspace. Then only add what you NEED. Analyze your space and requirements and only add back what is completely necessary. When you do start to add back, go with your instinct. If your immediate reaction is that you need it, keep it. If you waver, toss it.

Don’t rush – one of the biggest pitfalls in organization is being pressed for time. Set aside a substantial amount of time to really be able to analyze and strategize what you need to do to make the space what you want it to be.

Don’t organize for storage – one of the biggest problems I have had to overcome with organizing throughout my house is learning to organize to find things rather than to store them. Making organization simple when you are looking for something is the key. Don’t just store things away if it’s not user-friendly or a convenient place for you to find it later. Streamline for the search.

Customize it – make your organizational system work for you. It doesn’t have to suit anyone’s needs but your own. Make the system you create for yourself suit your process and thoughts.

Keep at it – another hurdle I face when organizing is getting distracted and not completing the entire organizing process. It’s key to keep at it until you have it just as you want it. Don’t decide 75% of the way through that it’s good enough. It won’t last. Make it exactly how you want it from the beginning and it will be easier to maintain.

Declutter – it is absolutely essential to reducing your stress to have a clutter-free workspace. Have your computer, whatever files and paperwork you need for just the task you are working on and maybe your coffee cup. Free your space of the unnecessary items that take up space and make your day more stressful.

Don’t print – anything that you can keep as a document on your computer, do! Do not print out anything””unless you will need it outside your home or office. And make sure you back everything up!

Organize your computer. Try to get files off the desktop””they are visual clutter. Reserve your desktop for the files you access every day. Create folders that work for you and keep your desktop clutter-free.

Streamline your computer use – through iGoogle’s homepage you can see your email inbox, task list, blogs in your reader, calendar,
etc…it’s customizable and makes your time more efficient to have as much as you can in one place.

Stay organized – the hardest part about getting organized is staying organized. Put everything back where it belongs as soon as you
are done with it. Force yourself to do it and it will become habit.

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Comments (4)

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  1. […] this week yurting and I have the honor of filling in for him over there today. I have shared some tips for organizing your home office. So go check it […]

  2. Jo says:

    I respectfully disagree with the tip “Don’t organize for storage”, in some cases. Specifically, I mean in the case of people who tend to be untidy, like me.

    In that case, I think it is better to organise to make things easier to put away than they are to get out again. Your motivation level is higher when you want an item than it is when you’re finished with the item. If you make your storage system categories so fine that you can lay your hand on an item in an instant, you increase the level of effort required to put something away in the system in the first place. Over time, the result is that items collect in a “put it away later” pile outside the system, because putting them away is just too hard.

    My tip for messy people would be to err on the side of making it brain-dead simple to put your stuff away, even at the cost of taking longer to locate the item when you want to use it…. It still won’t take as long as locating something in the “put it away later” pile(s).

  3. […] Two Dollars – Tips for Organizing Your Home Office. Yes, my office needs […]

  4. Good tips: I actually only started using igoogle recently and man is it a great tool