A Cleaner Desk = A Clearer Mind

Start off the new year on a brighter note with a cleaner workspace and a fresh mindset.


New year, new you, right?

Well…only if you’ve actually created the space for a fresh start.

Did you know January 10 has been designated National Clean Your Desk Day in the U.S.? That’s right! There’s a whole day set aside for you to clear out the old and bring in the new. For you as a business owner, that can mean anything from new customers to new processes, employees or even networking contacts!

Of course, January 10 has come and gone, so you might be saying, “I missed my chance.” But that’s not true. This cleansing practice can benefit you any day of the year. So what are you waiting for? It’s time to remove the mess and clutter that’s holding you back and preventing you from being able to think or see clearly. A cleaner workspace brings focus, calm, productivity and – for many people – a bit of joy!

Tips for Getting Organized

  • 1. Gather and sort.

    The first step to any sound organizational strategy begins with assessing what you actually have to work with. Don’t worry about tossing just yet. Compile everything in front of you to get the full picture first.

  • Sort items into piles: pens, documents, clips, knick-knacks, and staplers.
  • Assess where you have duplicates or too much of one group.
  • Scan, toss, donate and shred outdated documents, junk mail, business cards, and broken pens.
  • 2. Label and organize.

    Now that you have everything you need grouped – it’s time to label, bucket and organize. All those accounting documents piled in the corner? Let’s get those a fresh folder with a crisp label to ensure nothing is lost, everything is accounted for and it’s easy to find when it comes time for financial reporting and tax filing.

  • Place pens and pencils into a cup.
  • Organize pins and noteclips into tins.
  • Get a desktop organizer for files you need on hand.
  • Use a label printer to print out specific labels for files, containers, and drawers.
  • Place all documents and photos into their rightful spots.
  • 3. Do a digital cleanse.

    You know that Clean Your Desk Day is about more than just your physical desk, right? Start the new year off right by giving your computer desktop a nice cleanse too! Who knows, maybe your computer will even run better after.

  • Clean caches and browser history.
  • Delete/uninstall programs you don’t use.
  • Clear off the desktop and organize loose digital files into folders.
  • Save important files to your cloud or external drive.
  • Go into storage and sort by largest to find out which files are taking up the most space.
  • Delete unnecessary files to clean up hard disk space.
  • Run a disk cleanup or repair.
  • And finally, don’t forget to empty your virtual trashbin to remove it all!

Want to take it one step further? Consider a social media cleanse too!

On Twitter, you can organize your feed by creating lists to create minifeeds that quickly satisfy whatever you’re looking for at the moment – whether it’s a list for inspiration, business tips, people you look up to – anything! And if you have extra time, you can delete the accounts that are clogging up your feed and failing to add value, whether it’s on Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook or Instagram.

Finish It Off With a Deep Clean

Now that you’ve successfully cleaned your desk AND your desktop and perhaps socials, it’s time for the final finishing touch!

Grab a can of compressed air, a microfiber cloth, and a mild surface cleanser. Wipe your screen with a dry microfiber cloth to remove any fingerprints or dust. Next, blow out all the crumbs and dust from your keyboard with the compressed air. If you’re feeling jazzy, you can even swipe down the keys with isopropyl alcohol. Once your computer is clean, remove it and give your desk a good wipedown with the surface cleanser. Then replace everything and voila – you are ready for the new year!

Take a deep breath and give yourself a little thanks. (Don’t you feel better, too?)

And if you enjoyed the process, share it! Use #ZSBCleanOffYourDeskDay to post on social media and encourage others to do the same.


Editor's Note:

Love the idea of labeling and organizing, but don’t have the right label printer? We’ve got you. Check out the ZSB Series for an easy to use, highly modern and mess-free label printer.

And for more business tips and tricks, check out our other ZSB blogs.