Stop what you’re doing for just a moment and take a good look at your workspace at home. If you work from home and have young children in tow, there’s a strong likelihood that your desk is a mess. Your toddler has shoved the paperwork onto the floor to make space for his building blocks and you can’t locate your laptop.
These days when you do get a chance to sit down at your desk, you get so overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff in front of you that avoiding it altogether is easier. No wonder you aren’t getting any work done!
What if a few simple tips could turn your chaotic workspace at home into an organised haven of productivity? Here are nine steps to getting there.
Are you actually comfortable in your chair? If you aren’t then it’s no surprise that you want to spend the least amount of time in it. Or maybe your desk is too high or too low. Identify these issues and then try out different solutions until you have a setup where you can comfortably spend a solid hour or two working.
Things automatically feel more chaotic if you have too much on and around your workspace. Get rid of all unnecessary items but don’t just throw everything into a drawer. If you don’t need it, then bin it.
Now that your workspace contains less junk, it’s time to organise what’s left. Think about storage solutions that will be useful and that will improve the practicality of the space. Now is the time to visit one of those storage solution stores that us women love to get lost in!
Keep the items that you use all the time close at hand. This will help you avoid wasting precious time looking for things you constantly need like pens, highlighters and calculators.
Your office is now lovely and tidy but don’t forget your computer! Are there 1,000 unread emails in your inbox? Delete anything that isn’t important, unsubscribe to annoying newsletters and deal with anything that is urgent. Do the same for all your documents folders. This may take 30 minutes or more but will be well worth it.
Spend some time creating systems and procedures for the tasks that you complete for your business. When a piece of paper lands on your desk, what do you do with it? Figure the process out, document it simply and make it your system. Having systems in place eliminates guess work and ensures you know where everything is all of the time.
At the end of every work session, spend just a few minutes cleaning up after yourself, just like you expect the kids to do after a play session. And just like your kids, you’ll probably want to skip this step but make yourself do it anyway.
A poorly lit workspace can kill your productivity, impact your mood and have you avoiding the space. Make sure there is plenty of natural light and if there isn’t, then make up for it with some bright, well-placed lamps.
None of the above will make any difference if you don’t actually set a time everyday to get in there and get the work done. And once you create that routine, stick to it.
How do you keep your workspace at home or in the office organised?
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Kat Jarman is a working mother and online business coach at Craft A Business. She ﬁrmly believes that women can have it all if they stop working so hard in all the wrong ways and start working smart instead. Connect with Kat on Facebook or Pinterest or start your own online craft business with her free Craft Business Toolkit.