BINS OR BOXES
Where are my paperclips? How did I lose that pen? These are a few questions I used to ask myself all too often. It was absolutely infuriating to have to hunt these “little things” down when I needed them.
My solution was to fold origami boxes from patterned paper. I love the fact that the size can be altered easily, and you can customize the colors/patterns to match your workspace. My favorite part about them is when they get old or dusty, you can throw them away and make new ones—guilt free.
If you’re not a do-it-yourself type person, you can always purchase small plastic bins for your workspace. They are easy to find, and in many places, they’re inexpensive. I highly recommend dollar stores or the Target dollar spot for small desk accessories. You can even find seasonal or holiday-themed bins, too.
FILE CABINET OR DRAWERS
If you keep files regularly, I highly recommend a small file cabinet or drawers. It helps keep things organized, and I would imagine it’ll come in handy during tax time!
Personally, I use one drawer for my printed monthly expense charts and receipts, and another drawer for client information. At some point, I will need to alphabetize client files, in which case I will eventually move to a small file cabinet or a file box; it will help me find what I need faster because I’ll be able to look at all of the file titles in one fell swoop.
A similar system can be implemented for most businesses. For example, if you run a retail business, you can keep inventory notes and order slips in a similar fashion, too. The options are endless!
I believe an office without a bookshelf is pointless. I usually store books relevant to writing on my bookshelf (being that I’m a freelance writer and fiction writer), and having them within reach is helpful. Who wants to go hunting down a book in the middle of a solid work groove anyway?
I also plan to use my bookshelf to store old tax information and client information in binders. Those will go on the lower shelves. While I anticipate I won’t need them, I like keeping records just in case.
Last but not least, you can use your bookshelf to add a bit of personal flair to your workspace. I especially like mugs with personal photos on them for pen storage.
I am a huge fan of using a planner to keep my schedule organized. There are countless options out there. There are Erin Condren Life Planners, Passion Planners, Filofax Sets, and the Bullet Journal System—to name a few.
I use the Bullet Journal System because I can modify how I plan as time goes on. For example, if I don’t like a page layout I use for one week, I can change the layout the following week. Printed planners don’t have this flexibility.
Each bullet journal I keep is pretty small—it’s large enough to plan one month at a time—and I store several months’ worth of journals in a traveler’s notebook cover. This allows me to switch out notebooks and keep the leather cover, too.
So there you have it! These are the essential tools I use to stay organized. My setup is nothing fancy, but you can implement the same tools and dress things up as much as you’d like. How do you keep your workspace organized? Let us know in the comments!
Jess R. Greene knows the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well. She is the mind behind the freelance writing website, Red Pen Scribe. Writing blog articles and web copy is her specialty, and she loves to work with entrepreneurs and small businesses.
Despite this, Jess got her start in creative writing and earned her BFA from Full Sail University. One of her short stories, “Beyond Expectations,” is published online. Jess is also an up-and-coming novelist who believes you shouldn’t forget where you came from.