Include Your Home Office In Your Spring Cleaning
It’s so beautiful where I live right now. The fruit trees are blooming, as are my roses. Some of the bulbs I planted over winter are blooming as well, tulips and irises. It’s spring, which is a good time to get things clean. As you get the rest of your home freshened up and extra clean, make sure that you include your home office. Here are some tips to get you going.
Look Over Your Home Office
How does your home office look right now? Mine has papers from the kids’ school, most of which simply need to be thrown out, as they’re for activities the kids have no interest in. There are candy wrappers on the desk (mom stash? What mom stash?).
There are boxes we pulled out of the garage when we were cleaning it out, and they still need to be sorted and put away. We’re trying not to let the boxes go back into the garage, so no skipping that for “next time.”
Where did that stain on the carpet come from?
So much dust and cat hair.
My desk setup still looks pretty good, although I could stand to look at attaching the power strip to the desk. Then I won’t have to worry about cord length for so many things when I use it as a standing desk.
Go over the various points in your home office and decide what is where it belongs, what isn’t, and what could stand to be better.
Pick a point in your office and start sorting things. Make a pile for trash and a pile for things that belong elsewhere. Test your pens and toss the ones that don’t work. Put things that belong in your office where they belong. If you need to do something else before you can put something away, make a pile for that too.
Throw out the trash and put away the things that don’t belong in your home office.
Get out your cleaning supplies and get working. Clean the windows. Wipe down your desk, shelves and decor. Move everything. Vacuum or sweep and mop.
Clean your computer too. Get some canned air and blow out all the dust. Use a small paintbrush on the heat sinks. This is pretty easy to do with most desktop computers, but may be a bit trickier on a laptop. A handheld vacuum can be useful to get the dust out once it’s away from the components. A good cleaning can make your computer run cooler and quieter.
Now that you’ve handled pretty much everything in your home office, is it really where you want it to be? Are things you need daily in easy reach?
Is there anything in your office that causes people to interrupt you? Could it go elsewhere?
In my office, for example, we keep office supplies for the entire family. I have an entire wall of built in cabinets, far more storage than I need for my work. We therefore put all the office supplies in my office.
One thing I’ve done is encourage my older kids to keep more supplies in their work spaces. They each have spaces where they tend to do their homework, and it makes sense for them to have easy access to the supplies they need without interrupting me. My youngest still does best with very limited supplies, as she misplaces them regularly.
Plan For The Future
Consider the things that made a mess in your office. How can you minimize them in the future?
If mail is a problem, for example, build a habit of filing, throwing out or shredding mail as it comes in. Don’t let it pile up on your desk or a counter.
You can do these same steps on your computer and get your life there more organized. Reconsider your computer filing system. Unsubscribe from emails you never read. Use filters to sort your email. This will make it easier to spot the emails that really matter to you.
A clean and organized home office makes it easier to be productive. You aren’t so distracted by the clutter or mess – you can just get to work.