House Cleaning Tips > Organizing > Organizing Your Desk

Clean Organized Desk



Desk Organizing Tips

It has been said more than once: “A clean desk is the sign of a sick mind.” Don’t believe it.

A messy desk actually keeps you from working at peak efficiency, zaps your energy and causes you to stress out in frustration.

A cluttered desk is a curse to the busy entrepreneur in you. You can’t locate important documents. You can’t find the phone number you wrote on the notepad you just had two minutes ago. Other important data is buried deep under piles of paper.

What a waste of time you end up spending looking for things. If your desk was organized, you wouldn't be feeling this whirlwind of frenzy going on.

An organized desk will unclutter your mind and uncover some of your unleashed talent and potential. No more wasting time and money trying to find important papers - we'll get that desk organized together!

The Hard Truth

Are you finding your work situation is not going as you thought? Maybe you've been denied a promotion or your review didn't go as you had hoped.

If any of these sound familiar, ask yourself these questions:

  • Does my messy desk keep me from working efficiently?
  • Am I wasting time because I can’t find important files on my desk?
  • Am I missing deadlines because I can’t find the information I need when I need it?
  • Have I actually misplaced important documents more than once and found them right in front of me, but buried under a pile of other papers?
  • Is my desk working against me?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then it’s time you put everything else aside and organize your desk.

You simply can’t continue to operate under these circumstances because you are adding to and compounding the problem.

Clearing off Your Desk

Get rid of the clutter – now. Make your desk both functional and user-friendly.

Start by clearing your desk. As you’re clearing it, place like items together. For instance:

  • Put all loose papers and notepads together.
  • Gather all files and put them in another stack.
  • Pick up all pens, pencils, paperclips and put those together.
  • Books, keepsakes, etc.

All you should have left on your desk is the phone, and/or the computer and/or a lamp.

Clean the Top of Your Desk

Alright, you’ve done a fantastic job so far clearing off the desktop and we’re ready to clean it. Spray the top of the desk with polish/cleaner and wipe dry with a soft clean cloth. Clean the phone and the computer, and dust the lamp.

The Best Way to Organize Your Desktop

Most of us are tied to our phones – it is the umbilical cord of business. Place the phone in an area that is most convenient for you to reach (it makes a difference if you are right or left handed).

Then, put either a pen or pencil holder with a supply of writing instruments and a note tablet next to the phone.

Of course you have a computer on your desk and is placed in front of you.

Possibly you have a lamp or file organizer on your desk as well. The things that are most used should be at your fingertips.

How to Organize Your Office Supplies

Now you get to sort through all the piles made earlier when you cleared off the desktop.

Loose Papers

Go through this stack and sort it by topic, person, completed, ongoing, etc. Then where necessary, assign each by importance.

If you have personal documents, emails, papers that are not needed, either bring them home or shred what is not needed.

Set these piles aside for now, we’ll do more with them in a bit.

Organizing Files

Same thing applies here as with the loose papers. When you have finished organizing your files, put any of the loose papers that apply to a topic in the file.

If a file isn’t already designated, make one. Make as many as you need and place all valuable papers away.

When you’re done, organize each topic in chronological order, by date, by importance, or however you keep your paperwork. Paperclips or binder clips can be used to keep emails separated, sales contracts separate, etc. 

File in the file cabinet when you’re done. If you have a desktop file holder, current workings can be placed there.

Pens, Pencils, Paperclips

Get rid of any used up pens, broken pencils and put paperclips back in the paperclip holder. If you have a pen/pencil holder only keep one or two pens and maybe a pencil accessible. If you have a drawer organizer, put them in the appropriate place.

I know when you go to meetings outside the company, or travel you pick up random writing instruments. Only keep what you really need in the drawer, set the rest aside for now and I’ll give you an idea what to do with them.

Same goes for binder clips, rubber bands, and other small miscellaneous office items that end up on your desk.

Keep only what you need in or on your desk. If you went to the community office supply cabinet and brought back a box of replacement tape to your desk and you only needed one – bring the rest back to the cabinet.


Although it’s nice to have a personal picture or two of family members on your desk, keep it to a minimum or if your desk space is limited, put them on a shelf.

If you travel for the company and pick up keepsakes along the way – pens, key clips, whistle, t-shirt, masks, etc. – keep these in a container in an out-of-the-way spot or give them to HR to hang on to.

Then when the Christmas dinner comes along, they can be used as giveaways.

We did this every year at a company I worked for. A name was pulled out of a hat and someone received the giveaway. We had some really interesting and unique pieces. It was fun, we had a good time with this!

Get into a Routine

Clearing your desk first thing in the morning and before you leave for the night is a good habit to get into. You’re minimizing the clutter and encouraging a calmer state of mind.

Make it a habit of filing every piece of paper that comes across your desk as soon as you have read it and acted upon the information.

Be sure your file folders are in alphabetical order in the filing cabinet because it makes them much easier to manage and fine.

Limit the amount of office supplies you keep on or in your desk. Also invest in a drawer organizer if you don’t already use one.

Use Your Computer to Keep Organized

Most computers come with a built-in calendar and appointment program. When you have deadlines, enter reminders into your computer program rather than leaving a sticky here and there on your desk.

You should also enter all of your correspondents’ names, addresses, contact numbers and email addresses into your computer’s address book.

By using the tools available on your laptop or PC, you won’t be losing important information.

The key to keep your desk organized and your mind relaxed is to tackle paperwork before it gets out of control and to remember to keep the items on your desk to a minimum.

Connect with Mrs Clean!

Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, Mrs Clean (Corina Wilson) is not only the owner of the company, but a very busy mother of 3 children.

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Mrs Clean realized long ago, that a clean home is a necessity, not a luxury when we are struggling to find the time in our day to cover the very basic levels of work and/or family obligations. The battle seems to never end... (but that's why we're here to help!)

When Mrs Clean is not busy managing her house cleaning company or running her kids back and forth to their events, she enjoys experimenting with natural and non-toxic cleaners and learning new techniques to remove stains.

She thoroughly enjoys sharing her valuable information with the readers of her blogs and various social media sites.

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