home office The home office is here to stay. Whether we use it as the place to pay bills, keep school papers, or run a business (or all of the above) our home office should help us focus in an organized and relaxed atmosphere. Organizing a home office can feel like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are three basic steps that can help you get–and stay–organized at home.

Computer Mess: Wifi allows us to minimize the number of cords and power panels that used to clutter up home office calendar on deskthe space underneath the desk. Hiding the remaining cords can be as easy as velcro or clip attachments, or as elaborate as building a false wall front in which to stash the unsightly offenders. Lots of pre-made products now exist for this purpose, and options for do-it-yourselfers also abound. Let Pinterest be your guide to the cord management system that works for you.

Color Code: One basic organizing principle that is both immediate and fully integrated is color. Consider using colored file folders for different categories of files, or using colored adhesive dots on plain folders to indicate category: consider green for financial, blue for pet records, red for private correspondence with the former Soviet Union (just kidding on that last one). Here’s a detailed example of what that might look like; remember, you can start small and simple and work up from there.

Office-Supply Round-Up: Use drawer dividers and small boxes or containers to hold all clips, rubber bands, and other assorted office necessities. Keep them out of sight (but within reach) as much as possible.  As always, store “like with like”. Avoid keeping a lifetime supply of pens on top of your desk: have one or two that you keep an eye on, and store the rest out of sight.

Finally, style your space with beauty in mind. A beautiful desk lamp or a small vase for fresh flowers can remind us to keep our space looking sharp and our spirit feeling productive. If you have enough light, a small succulent can make a perfect officemate (don’t overwater!). Now back to the (organized) grindstone!

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