Thursday, November 20, 2008

organize your desk in 5 steps

You won't believe all the excuses I get from people about their untidy desks! "It's because I'm creative" or "I know where everything is".

SOUND FAMILIAR?

This may very well be true. However, for most people, an unorganized desk makes you feel overwhelmed and out of control. And how can you be productive when you're overwhelmed?

The good news is you can have an organized desk in just 5 SIMPLE steps:

1. Set up your desk properly

If you answer the phone with your left hand, then keep the phone to the left of your computer. Now this might seem obvious but you'll be surprised at the number of people I encounter who have to scramble and reach behind their computer to get to the phone.

2. Touch each piece of paper once only

This will force you to make decisions - throw away, action, forward or file. Those are the only choices you have.

3. Have one notebook for all your notes

When you take messages or need to quickly jot down a note, write it in your ONE notebook. There should not be 10 post-it notes and lots of other pieces of paper on your desk. Better still; write the date on the top of every page so you can reference old information quickly. And start each day on a new page - literally ;)

4. Clear junk regularly

Every time you get up from your desk, clear your empty mugs, glasses, snacks, etc. The same goes for all those dry markers and pens that don't work. Throw them out!

5. Have only the papers you are actually working with on your desk

Keep your many projects sorted in separate folders. When you want to work on something, just grab one of the folders. All you have to think about is that one folder…not all the other projects you are working on!

For more organizing ideas, visit my website: www.andreadekker.com

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