Nothing kills productivity faster than an untidy workspace. The last thing you want to be doing is trying to find your mouse underneath a mountain of papers, assorted notebooks, and empty coffee cups when you're supposed to be working your way through a mountain of emails. If you're finding yourself more distracted than dedicated, make your way through the below checklist to freshen up your workspace and fire up your productivity!
TIDY UP THAT DESK!
Is your work strewn all over your desk? (Full disclosure: mine is covered in work, post-its, content calendars, notebooks, random sharpies and pens, lipstick, and snacks – so I'll be working through this checklist right alongside you). First, do a bit of organizing so the surfaces you need to clean aren't covered in the work that you're supposed to be doing. You don't need to go through every single item on your desk, just take care of the main bits and pieces that are causing the most clutter. Piles of paper all over the place? No problem, get yourself some folders (hot tip: there are plenty of great designs out there if you want something a little more aesthetically pleasing than standard-issue beige) and file that stuff away – out of sight, out of mind! (Until you actually need to work on it, that is). Put any loose items away in drawers if you have them, and neatly stack anything you want to keep out on your desk's surface. Now that your desk is clean, you can zen right out (productively, of course). You know what they say… tidy desk, tidy mind, yada yada yada.
YOU KNOW WHAT'S ACTUALLY KIND OF GROSS? YOUR PHONE!
Bonus points if you were going to suggest a keyboard, but we'll get to that one next. As much as we don't want to admit it, our cellphones are pretty gross. (In fact, they're literally covered in germs – how lovely!) We're on them for a huge part of the day, and we pretty much take them everywhere with us (now I'm not one to point fingers, but I know for a fact that nobody takes that long in the bathroom. Just sayin'). Let's also not forget that there are studies showing that most phones test positive for disease-causing microbes and other "matter".
So, now that we've covered off the spectrum of gross, here's what we're going to do about it! Grab yourself a lint-free cloth (if you don't have one, we've got a great range of microfiber cleaning cloths here), make a mix of ½ 70% alcohol and ½ bottled water, and pour it into a little spray bottle – lightly spray the mixture onto the cloth (use sparingly!) and wipe it over your entire phone. Voila! Now you have a shiny, germ-free cellphone ready to go! Just note that this is for infrequent disinfecting, not everyday cleaning – you don't want to risk damaging the screen's coating by overusing the solution. Now that you've sorted your cellphone, give your desk phone a quick wipe down and you're good to go!
ALRIGHT, NOW IT'S TIME FOR THE COMPUTER
Just like your phone, your computer keyboard can also get kind of nasty so it's good to give it a good clean every so often. The first step is to get your hands onto a can of compressed air and go to town on those keys. You'd be surprised at what's hiding away down there – fluff, dust, crumbs, glitter, you name it! Give it a good spray and watch as the hidden surprises keep on coming. If it's a wireless or desktop keyboard, you could also turn it upside down and give it a gentle shake to dislodge any stubborn bits and pieces that the air can't get out – just be careful and don't break it. For the very last step, all you need is a post-it note (really!). Using the sticky backing, just run the post-it between the keys on your keyboard. The adhesive stripe will pick up any leftover dust as you go.
As for the screen, BE CAREFUL. Take it from me, you don't want to spray any cleaning products directly on the screen - natural or otherwise (destroying your work monitor is an awkward conversation that you just don't need to have). All you need is your microfiber cloth and a little more of the alcohol/combo mixture. Spray a tiny amount onto the cloth and wipe down the screen, being careful not to have any excess moisture on the cloth before you get started. Of course, it's always wise to check the manufacturer's notes in case they advise against using alcohol on the screen before you get started.
Good as new!
TAKE A LOOK AT YOUR SPACE
Now that you've wiped down the surfaces and everything is sparkling clean, take a look around and see if it's worthwhile rearranging your space. If clutter is a regular occurrence, it's probably a good idea to change things up a bit. Sort out your items, keep anything that you use regularly close by and store anything else (neatly!) in drawers or shelves to help keep your space clutter-free.
Now that your desk is clean and clutter-free, you can get back to business! When everything is in order, you can pretty much guarantee that you'll have less wasted time when switching between projects. You can also try and keep on top of things and maintain your aesthetically pleasing surroundings by allocating a few minutes at the end of each week to file away the weekly work, tidy up any loose ends and get things ready for the week ahead. You'll thank yourself on Monday morning – trust me!
Our range of all-natural cleaning products can be your secret weapon when it comes to keeping your workspace clean (and smelling great, if we do say so ourselves). Our products are gentle and non-abrasive yet highly effective on all surfaces, and we have a range of complementary microfiber cloths to boot! Shop the range by clicking on the link below. Once you've got your hands on one, be sure to check out our handy guide on how to clean microfiber cloths here.