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6 Simple Tips to Get Your Home Office Organized
By Heidi DeCoux



If you work from home or run a home-based business, keeping your home office organized can be a challenge. After all, the home is where we relax, eat, sleep, and interact with family, all of which can spill over and cause home office organization problems. When your workspace is disorganized, your productivity tends to suffer. To create a productive home office workspace, try the following tips.

1. Set boundaries: Determine the boundaries of your home office, and keep all other activities out of there. It's best if you're able to devote an entire room to your home office, as this makes it so much easier to block everything else out. However, if your home office is only a certain section of a room, draw an imaginary square around that section, and keep everything not related to work out of that square.

2. Have the basics on hand: For most types of businesses, you will need:

• A trash can, recycling can & paper shredder

• A container or drawer of writing implements, paper clips, clamps, post-it notes, scissor & stapler

• A file cabinet or file drawers with hanging & tab file folders

• A telephone

• A clock and a timer

• A notepad to jot down notes and to-do lists

3. Remove clutter: To promote home office organization, anything that is not directly useful for your work should be removed from your workspace. If you're the type of person who tends to accumulate multiple stacks of documents, books, and other materials throughout your day, take a few minutes each day to cleanse and sort it. For most of us, simply being surrounded by clutter can decrease our productivity.

4. Have an Efficient Filing System: You should be able to locate any paper or file in 30-seconds or less. In addition, the papers that you need to take action on, should be in an Active File System designed to automatically bring them to your attention when they need to be handled.

This is important for two reasons.

1. So you don't lose or forget about them or miss a deadline.

2. So that you can focus on your primary work without the distraction of having these important papers pile up and you wondering if you should be stopping what you are doing to deal with them. If the papers that require an action are in an Active File System, you able to focus on your primary work and then deal with them at the appropriate time.

For an efficient home filing system, check out the Fast-Filing Method. It offers an active filing system and guarantees you will be able to find any paper in 30-seconds or less.

5. Take breaks and eat lunch elsewhere: It's refreshing and can actually boost your productivity to get a little breather away from your office in the middle of the day. If possible, get outside during this time. Eat lunch in your yard or your deck or porch. The vitamin D will boost your mood and your mental sharpness.

6. Use a Timer: Timers are a great tool to keep you focused. They limit the amount of time you spend on low-priority busy work, so you can focus more of your time on high-priority work. Establish how much time you are going to spend on specific activities, such as, handling email. Set your timer for that amount of time. You when you have a deadline you will be more likely to get the job done in less time because your deadline will force you to prioritize and it make you move more quickly.



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About the Author

Heidi DeCoux, Clear Simple Living, LLC
Minneapolis, MN 55419
612-821-1426

If you would like to re-print this article, please contact the author.
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