THE BLOG

10 Tips for a Clutter-Free Desk

03/27/2015 11:19 am ET | Updated May 27, 2015

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Photography by BRITTANY AMBRIDGE
OK, so your desk isn't exactly promoting productivity. Likely story. These tricks and tips will transform your grimy desk into one that's joyfully inviting.

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Photography by MICHAEL WILTBANK
1. Never let junk mail hit your desk.
We know it's easier said than done. Straight to the trash, recycling bin, or shredder.

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Photography by BRITTANY AMBRIDGE

2. Give yourself guidelines (and stick to them).
Create a monthly clear-the-desks rule, when everything goes into a file, a box, or the trash.

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Photography by MICHAEL WILTBANK
3. Make it look pretty.
Always take five minutes to straighten up your desk before leaving. When you see how pretty it is, you'll want to come back.

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Photography by BRITTANY AMBRIDGE

4. Organize accordingly.
Use a label-maker for files and boxes labeled "accounts payable," "2014 taxes," and "keepsakes."

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Photography by MICHAEL WILTBANK

5. Think about the way you work.
Set up your file cabinet (or file box) the way your mind works -- by topic, by month, whatever speaks to you -- so you'll be more inclined to use it.

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Photography by BRITTANY AMBRIDGE
6. Invest in key pieces.
Buy a paper shedder. It makes clutter clearing easy, and the buzzy repetition is meditative.

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Photography by MICHAEL WILTBANK
7. Utilize every inch.
Find room in a drawer for your stapler, tape dispenser, Post-its, highlighter, and other useful but ugly supplies.

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Photography by MICHAEL WILTBANK
8. Out with the old.
Can't let go of that old-fashioned calendar and rolodex? Come on, there are helpful apps for all of that.

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Photography by MICHAEL WILTBANK
9. Stock up on what you use.
Don't cram your pencil cup with random, found pens. Buy a single type of writing implement.

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Photography by BRITTANY AMBRIDGE
10. Presentation maters.
Treat yourself to a nice letter organizer -- mail looks more deal-able (and takes up less space) when envelopes are neat.