Home Office Feng Shui: Organize Your Workspace
Practicing Feng Shui can be a great way to maintain a happy balance in your office space. The key elements of water, fire, wood, and earth can help you find a calm balance and generate more energy and productivity.
In today’s fifth and final installment of our five-part series on Feng Shui tips for your home office space, this week we’re talking about organizing your workspace.
Part Five: Organizing Your Workspace
Tidy up your desk
To reduce the amount of clutter and scattered stacks of papers on your desk, look for desk accessories that suit your needs. Wire baskets, trays, pen holders, and small containers can be used on and on your desk to keep supplies in order. Use sustainable products like bamboo and avoid anything that is not good for the environment, such as plastics, acrylics, and disposable items.
If you refer to manuals or books during your workday, put them on a shelf for easy access. When organizing shelves, put your smallest books inside and taller books outside. This system looks more pleasing to the eye and will keep your books more upright.
Don’t you use book shelves only for books? Okay, but keep it organized and neat. Check the contents of the shelves every six months and remove those elements that are no longer relevant. When “removing” such items, consider selling the item on Craigslist, recycling it, or posting it on Freecycle.
Have a filing system
If you don’t already have one, consider purchasing (again, Craigslist and Freecycle) a filing cabinet and some eco-friendly file folders. There is no better way to keep track of your paperwork and if you use a lot of specifically labeled folders, you will find everything you need quickly.
If you want to go one step further, stop using paper and scan everything into Evernote and / or Google Drive.
Check your cables
Your work desk is most likely covered in cables, especially if you have a desktop computer. Messy cables can be stressful, so be sure to find a way to keep them together and organized. There are many options available, from twisted ties to more expensive clip packs.
Tip: Save those bread ties and reuse them. Plus, old-fashioned kinky phone cords work wonders. Look in your “garbage bins” … you probably have one there. Always be sure to use a surge protector for the sake of the safety and longevity of the equipment.
Tip: At the end of the workday, turn everything off and unplug the surge protector from the wall. They add up to 30% of your electricity bill.
You are not a library
Unless you’re using them, old manuals, guides, and magazines can quickly turn into a runaway mess. If you want to keep them for any reason, try to hide them from view but in an organized way. The use of baskets or cabinets can be quite effective. Again, spend some time getting organized and scanning the smallest items in Evernote and / or Google Drive.
Avoid food in your office
If you need a snack or meal in your office, make sure you clean it up as quickly as possible. However, as a general rule, if you work from home, it is best to eat in the kitchen. Food creates clutter and trash, which you don’t want in your workspace.
Order the mail immediately
When you retrieve your daily mail, be sure to sort it before entering your office. Keep the recycle bin en route from your mailbox to your office. Make sure you leave personal mail elsewhere and only bring business mail to your office. Have a designated spot for it and try to sort it out at least once a week, but every day is so much better. Recycle or archive items you no longer need.
End each day with a cleanse
It is important that you tidy up your desk at the end of each day, and you should try to make it part of your daily work routine. In this way, you can start each day with an organized office and be prepared for whatever the day brings you. This means that each morning will start out calm and relaxed, rather than being stressed out from walking into a cluttered room. If you can’t do it every day, be sure to do it on Friday afternoons. This includes your contact lists, collecting, organizing and vacuuming. Personally, I do most of this on Thursdays, since Fridays are garbage days.
The act of making a to-do list can help clear your mind and keep you organized. Keeping track of what to do in a day is important, and lists can prevent you from suddenly feeling overwhelmed or having a panic attack. If necessary, make a new list after lunch, or in the late afternoon, for the next morning’s tasks. Try using Asana or Evernote.
Create a “Only work” Zoned
After all the hard work you’ve done to create a clutter-free space full of good energy and Chi, the last thing you want is clutter to take over and destroy everything. To avoid this, don’t use your work area for anything other than working. Your home office has been designed with the purpose of working, so no one should play games on your computer or leave a clutter in the room.
Following these 50 simple tips and good Feng Shui practices will help you create positive energy in your office and organize the movement of this energy. Remember:
Balance the elements
Focus lights and use colors
Decorate with consistency and plants
Use sounds and scents
Order your space
If you can do these things, then you will have a Feng Shui work environment that will not only be a productive place for you, but also a haven.