Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Staples.
I’ve spoken many times about how much I love working from home. Working from home means convenience (no commute!), comfort (I set the temperature!), and bonus productivity (laundry folding in between client sessions!). But if your office space isn’t set up the way you want it to be, you simply won’t be happy or productive. So today we’re going to talk about office organization, how you can organize your office while sticking to a budget, and how I decided to refresh and reorganize my office, with Staples’ help.
Office Organization: A Tidy Office Represents A Tidy Mind?
My half-German, half-Norwegian dad always says, “A tidy office means a tidy mind!” I always thought that comment was hilarious, because his desk was always a total mess, yet he always knew where everything was. Well, I guess I did learn from his insistence and not from his example, because I always feel better when my office is tidy and well-organized (even though I definitely struggle to keep it that way).
When you’re sitting in a tidy office, it feels like you’re about to do something great. That said, there’s a point where I kind of want to see a little messy, because a pile of books on my desk (with pens holding my place, of course), and a few papers scattered around means I have business going on, and that’s exciting to me. It’s good to have things going on. But if my chaos is happening in the midst of chaos, that’s not good, so while I want some activity on my desk (except not for the photos for this post!), I need serious office organization for the rest of my space.
A few years ago, I went fully digital. No more paper. It was wonderful. Except that paper is still always a thing. There are some records you have to keep. Tax records. Important documents. Receipts.
How to organize them:
- Year By Year – for business, I keep all receipts and tax records organized by year and category. Each year is then kept in a file box with dividers to separate the years.
- Important Documents – I keep all important documents, like the articles of organization, our tax ID number, and bank account numbers in their own files, separate from all others.
- Project Files – As I work on projects for clients, while most of the documentation is in the cloud and in our project management tool, I keep a few key documents that I can easily reference in files right next to my desk. Once the project is complete, my notes and all the files get scanned by the high-speed scanner and uploaded to the cloud.
- I like keeping my current files right next to my desk, so I keep them in a Staples file box right next to my chair for easy access. The file box and its lid are translucent so I can actually see into the box very quickly and easily.
Okay, so big secret: the ergonomics of my office have been terrible in the last year or so, but for a really good reason: A year and a half ago, I added a treadmill desk to my home office. My hubby, Leo, actually built it for me (read about that here). So seating wasn’t a huge priority for awhile.
Then I injured my foot. And because I assumed it was temporary, I thought one of our dinner table chairs would suffice. So that’s what I’ve been using for the last year, as I lived in denial, thinking my foot (and hip, another injury) was going to get better. A dinner table chair. Terrible ergonomics.
When Staples offered to help with my office organization refresh, because I’m still not quite back on the treadmill desk full-time yet (not for quite some time, frankly), I was thrilled to be able to choose the Sonada Bonded Leather Managers Chair. It’s faux leather, so I don’t feel guilty, and has really nice, fixed, padded arms and adjustable lumbar support and seat height. It’s incredibly comfortable, and when
I’m sitting in it, I feel kind of fancy – and the price is unbeatable! This chair really delivered on my expectations for comfort while staying under budget.
It’s super-important to me that I have all my cables and chargers close by, so I put my Staples Three Device Rapid Wall Charger (available in-store now!) right next to my desk so I can be charging iPad and phone at the same time. I also have the Staples Dual Device Rapid Wall Charger, which I keep in my travel bag. Both of these chargers are super-portable (the plug folds in) and charge my devices quickly.
Since I tend to mark my place in books with pens, I’m constantly feeling like I don’t have enough pens. Thanks to Staples, I’m well-stocked with their OptiFlow Rollerball Pens, which I really like, because I can always see how much ink is left, which means I never run out unexpectedly (which has happened to me numerous times, and always at the worst possible moment).
In this digital age, writing is still very important, because there’s a connection between hand and brain. When we write things by hand, we actually retain them better than when we type them. That’s why, at the end of each day, I make my docket for tomorrow, so my brain actually feels more organized.
When you run a business from a home office, your working space is incredibly important. You need a space that inspires you, and it should be well-organized so that you can focus on running your business.
Here’s my improved and more organized space, using all of my new office organization tools from Staples:
Thanks, Staples, for helping Business in Blue Jeans get an office refresh this spring!