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While many of us are still working from home, we may be starting to think about returning to the office, even if for only a few days a week. Wherever you are working, this is a good time to think about a little spring cleaning. A good time to declutter and organize. As you make your plan, remember you will not only achieve a cleaner space to work in, but your health, productivity, and mood will improve, as will the impression you give to others about your capabilities. A quick review of the internet delivers a variety of ideas to get the process started.

Great Reasons to Spring Clean

  • Keyboards have been found to have up to 7,500 bacteria.
  • Individuals waste over 4 hours per week looking for paper, and this activity tends to raise anxiety and frustration.
  • A clean desk inspires 7.5 minutes more of productivity without feeling distracted.
  • Individuals with a clean desk are less likely to get sick.
  • Researchers have found that a clean desk increases productivity and persistence by 84%.

Get Started

Don’t think of this as a huge project. Follow these tips and you’ll be finished before you know it.

  1. Get inspired. Just like any behavior change, exercise more, lose weight, etc., it helps to visualize what the outcome will be, and depending on your motivation level, perhaps providing yourself with a reward when the goal is achieved is a good idea.
  2. Bite off small, manageable pieces. Create your plan and work your plan. We’re all busy, so schedule what makes sense for your daily routine and build the activity into reasonable time slots. It doesn’t all have to be done in one day.
  3. Eliminate digital clutter. Clean out your inbox. Read, reply, and delete emails you no longer need. Remove unused desktop icons. Digital clutter is just as frustrating as physical clutter.
  4. Tackle the heaping piles of paper. Even though we’d like to be paperless, it’s almost impossible. Recycle what you can, and shred those pages with sensitive information. Do you still need all those journals you were going to find time to read? If you don’t need it, recycle, or throw it away.
  5. Utilize colored folders to increase your abilities to organize and quickly identify and find different types of work files.
  6. Clean out your desk. Keep the most relevant items you need within arm’s reach.
  7. Clean surfaces. Wipe down computer screens and dust keyboards. Wipe all surfaces with disinfectant. Dust your shelves and polish your furniture. Make cleaning and disinfecting a part of your weekly routine. You’ll stay healthier.
  8. Personalize your space. What makes you relax and smile? Perhaps a photo of your children, or family, or a bowl of shells from your last vacation. Add a personal touch to motivate yourself.
  9. Keep up with it. Spring is a good time to do a thorough cleaning, but keeping up with organization and not getting bogged down with clutter is an ongoing task. Make time for it – you’ll be happier at the end of the week.

After you’ve completed the annual spring cleaning tradition, why not reward yourself with a few delicious Irish Shortbread Cookies! You deserve it.