Category Archives: How To Organize

How to Improve your Office Space

In the workplace, we all need a place to stay organized, especially depending on the type of business. A common reason many people are disorganized, is because they lack a proper workspace. Many assume it’s just due to laziness, but this isn’t always the case. Because of a cramped office space, it’s often difficult to organize all your papers and folders. Either you need to better utilize your office, or move into a new office where you have more space.

Whether you work from home as a contractor or freelancer, or are in the workplace, having office space for your business is important. After all, your employees definitely have a place to work, whether it’s their own private office, or a personal cubicle. On the other hand, it’s not just enough that you have your own office to work, but what are some ways you can improve on this? Are your making the best of your personal office? Are you still being distracted by things around you? Here are some ways you can improve.

#1. Clean Up Your Office

First and foremost, if your office is a mess, you need to clean it up. After all, how will you be able to work if all your papers are scattered around? Even more so, you’ll have trouble locating your papers and folders if things are disorganized. By organizing your files and folders, you’ll not only get a clearer picture of what needs to be accomplished, but you’re also setting a good example for your employees. Not to mention the business as a whole. As another way to organize and clean your office, use separate and unique folders for each type of document. Have you thought about color coding your folders? As an example, put all of your essential papers in a red folder (as if to signify their importance), while any miscellaneous documents could go in a green folder or any miscellaneous color of your choosing.

#2. Move to a New Office

As I mentioned earlier, another reason you might be disorganized, is due to a lack of office space. After all, you can’t lay out your files in the way you want to if there’s no room to do so. If this is the case, then consider moving to a new office, or expanding your current one. Obviously, it’ll give you the opportunity to work more efficiently, but it also gives you a chance to turn your office into more than just a place to work.

Have you considered buying accessories for your office, such as decorations? While this doesn’t necessarily serve a purpose in helping you complete your tasks, don’t forget that this is your own personal office. Why not lighten up the mood a bit? Many people have this mindset that an office should be a place devoid of any relaxation and enjoyment. However, it shouldn’t just be a place where you work on tasks, it should also be a place where you enjoy working on said tasks. Having more space in your office, allows you to design it the way you want.

#3. Find a Quiet Place to Work

This mainly applies to those who work from home. One of the keys to improving your office space, is to be free of distractions, and find a quiet place to work. First of all, do you have kids or pets? If not, this is a huge opportunity for you. If you do have children, on the other hand, finding a quiet space is absolutely essential. Either way, whatever space you plan to use, don’t be afraid to turn it into an office. Remember, this is where you’re going to be working a majority of the time. Regardless of whether its your family room or bedroom, clean up, organize everything, and get started!

Whether you work from home or are in a business, these are some tips for creating the perfect office space for your business.

For more information about ways to improve your office space in the workplace, which will lead to better success in your business, feel free to contact me today. Whether you’re looking for ways to improve your business security, or are looking to optimize your customer service with voice intelligence, I look forward to hearing from you, and assisting you in the best way possible.

Stuff

I was referred to this article by Paul Graham.  I thought the article was very interesting.  The author explores how our possessions have increased in number and (in some ways) our value of them has decreased in a way.  He also talks about how stuff used to be less accessible in generations past, and as a result, people had less accumulation.  As opposed to today, when industrialized countries have access to more and more stuff at continually lower prices (and many times lower quality).

More stuff doesn’t equate to satisfaction.

Isn’t it amazing how you can buy and buy and never feel satisfied?  Shopping addictions are pretty common, and difficult to overcome.  The deal is, no accumulation of stuff will ever fill the hole that we are trying to make it fill.  It’s about the value of life, people and experiences we come into contact with that should fill our days.  When it comes down to it, stuff will never love us back or help us when we’re down.

No amount of organizing or redesign can hide the fact that one has too much stuff in their home or office.  It’s not something that can be contained by a new product or process.  Really dealing with how much we have, and how much we bring into our lives is paramount.  It’s not worth having if it’s not useful.  It’s not worth the footprint in our space if it doesn’t bring value to life – it’s just stuff.

Buy with purpose.

I would be remiss if I didn’t admit that I like a good quality handbag or a nice pair of shoes that will last.  (For me, quality is more important than brand names – I could care less about what people think of the name on my bag.)  However, unconscious purchasing (which runs rampant in the USA) is a real dead end.  Buying stuff should be something we do with purpose, keeping in mind how it will serve us as a useful possession – NOT how it makes us feel when we buy it.

What’s your thought on “stuff”?

Moving Forward In Your Home Office

Looking out my window I see that my cherry tree has lost its blossoms and is now covered in deep red leaves. Winter has made way for spring and will eventually lead to summer and fall. Seasons are a very visual sign that time is marching on. I’d like to share this video with you:


I love this song. You don’t have to understand the words to feel how powerful it is. It gives me chills every time I listen to it. A little background: it’s a Japanese song, written and performed by Angela Aki. The song is called Sakura Iro (roughly translated: The Color Cherry Blossoms). In Japan, graduation happens in March, which coincides with the arrival of the cherry blossoms. The blossoms themselves and the fluttering “showers” the create represent the beginning of a new season. For many, this comes with closing a chapter, departure, etc.

It can be hard for us to put things behind us and move onto the next chapter. There is nothing wrong with remembering good times, as long as they don’t stop us from moving forward. I was engaged in a conversation with a group recently, and a one person was struggling with their business. She really wanted to move forward but was a little stuck and needed some advice. The leader of the group (in her infinite wisdom) said, “Are you more attached to the way it was, or the way you want it to be?” I don’t remember anything more about that conversation, because I kept replaying that question over in my mind.

Are you more attached to the way it was, or the way you want it to be?

There are times I get some resistance from clients, audience members and people I meet about making a change in their home office and life. Things like:

“My husband/wife is so disorganized”

“I’m not sure I could ever ‘be organized'”

“I’ve tried it all before”

“I don’t have enough time/money/energy to _______________”

Organization is a tool for life that’s useful for personal and professional reasons. It streamlines your life and your work so you can be as effective as humanly possible. It’s not an easy process, and a lot of “head stuff” comes into play that needs to be dealt with at some point. That whole “story” we have been living out in the office (or life for that matter) can be powerful. It dictates what we buy, how we work, how we live and ultimately the journey we take in this life.

“The home office is a reflection of your soul”, a friend of mine recently said. It doesn’t matter what you use your home office for: family business, creativity, making a living or making a life. Look around. Does your home office speak to you? If so, what does it say? Is a reflection of your past? Are you having a hard time letting go? Is it a subconscious stumbling block for you, preventing you from being everything you could be and accomplishing what you want to in this life? What’s the worst that could happen if you decided to take a step forward to make a change so you could create a life you love? Is it time to close a chapter so you can be open to a new one? Remember and honor the past, but don’t make it an excuse to procrastinate and stand still. So, again I ask,

Are you more attached to the way it was, or the way you want it to be?

Your Inbox is NOT a Task List: 5 Tips

I’ve made the switch to using Google Apps as my email client.  I’ve been pretty happy, I must admit.  It’s nice to have access anywhere and not have to deal with nursing my other application.  However, I was making one mistake that dawned on me the other day.

The inbox is NOT a task list.

Oh sure, I know for some people that works well.  But not for me, maybe not for you either.  Here’s some things that can happen if you use your inbox as a task list: Continue reading Your Inbox is NOT a Task List: 5 Tips

What Happens In Your Home Office?

31 Days of Home Office Organizing TipsTip #16: Multi-task with a purpose

(Part of the 31 Days of Home Office Organizing Tips)

If you’re like most, you do a bit of multi-tasking in your home office.   If you have children, I’ll bet the are in there sometimes too.   Also, if you’re like most, you do many different things in your home office.  Sound familiar?

So, what happens in your home office?

If you work from home, it’s vital to set some boundaries around what happens in your home office.  If it’s for work, only keep work related supplies in your home office.  This is especially important if you are taking a home office deduction (consult your accountant for more details).  On the other hand, if you are a serial home office multi-tasker, get creative! Continue reading What Happens In Your Home Office?

A Teacher Office Makeover & “Shaking Off the Sleepies”

A couple things happening around the web I wanted to share with you all…

Teacher Office Makeover

This summer I had an incredible opportunity to work on a project with Portland Family Magazine.  I worked with a teacher on his office.  It was a great time, and the job turned out beautifully!  Continue reading A Teacher Office Makeover & “Shaking Off the Sleepies”

Progress, Not Perfection

One question I am asked when meeting someone new is “So, what do you do?”.   More often than not, when I tell them I am an Organization Consultant, they ask a handful of questions such as: “Oh, you’re one of those people with all your spices alphabetized?” (This one happens to be true.)  Or “I would love to see your house.  I bet it’s perfect!”  *insert awkward silence here*

Perfection, Shmerfection. Continue reading Progress, Not Perfection