Is your desk looking like a sea of endless paper work creating unnecessary chaos? It may be time to say goodbye to clutter and create an efficient and productive workspace.

Studies have shown that working in an orderly environment promotes higher expectations, a clearer mind and more organised employees. Not only that, a clean and organised desk will save you time. No more hunting around for that note you scribbled down, everything should have its place.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bigcuthy/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bigcuthy/

Here’s how to declutter your work setup for a minimalist yet functional desk area in a few simple steps:

1.       Start From Scratch

Starting with a clean slate should put you in the right mind frame and force you to deal with every last scrap of paper. Move everything off the desk and place it on the floor or table next to you. Throw out anything which isn’t necessary and put little used items into storage.

2.       Prioritise

Keep essential items close to hand, but for those items you don’t often use, don’t feel bad about throwing it out. Do you really need a whole pot of pens when realistically one would do? The less clutter you have the closer you are to having an organised desk.

3.       Tame Your Cables

Whether you are a technical whizz kid or not you are still bound to have a significant number of wires on your office desk. Organise them with labels and look for desks with in built “rain gutters” which will accommodate all your bits and pieces. If you like to use tablets and smartphones as part of your working day, try a clever tool like Cordies Executive which will neatly stack your technology and keep wires in place.

4.       Put the “Post It” to Rest

Do you have more “Post Its” than you care to acknowledge? Great for a reminder, a moment of inspiration or to keep login details in close proximity they can quickly get muddled up or even worse lost. Take your reminders and important information online, instantly freeing up space and taking a more secure approach. 1Password is a useful app which safely keeps all your passwords and logins in one place.

5.       Address Your Virtual Workspace

It might not only be your desk which is desperate need of a tidy up. If your computer desktop is full of icons is it time to give it a makeover. Like you did with your desk, prioritise and take a ruthless approach. Are you a MAC user? Try Desktop Tidy a utility which tidies up your desktop keeping it free of clutter. It stores all of the cleaned up desktop files and folders in a hidden “shadow desktop”.

6.       Immortalise Your Contacts

Met some interesting people at a networking event? Gone to find their business card but haven’t the first idea where to look? It’s time to get to grips with ScanBizCards. This handy app quickly scans business cards and stores the information about the contact on your phone. The handful of business cards you’ve acquired don’t ever need to come into contact with your desk!

7.       Hone Your Habits

Keeping tidy doesn’t come naturally to a lot of people. Luckily Habit List is here to change your ways. Each day you can check off a particular task and see how close you are to forming a habit. A great way to get even the most reluctant of cleaners forced into action.

8.       And If All Else Fails…

Leave your messy desk behind and find somewhere else to work. The Work+ resource helps you find places to work other than your office, rated on proximity, facilities and noise levels.

Try to take ten minutes at the end of every day to organise, prioritise or file anything which you have accumulated throughout the working day so that things don’t creep up on you. This way, you should have an organised, easy to maintain workspace which you enjoy working in.

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