Set up a Command Center for Organizing Success
22 Oct 2015
Whether you work full-time from home or simply need a space from which to run and organize your home and family, dedicating a space – or, as we like call it, a Command Center – specifically for this purpose is imperative to finding your focus.
It can be difficult, if not impossible, to get down to business in a home office that is poorly designed to channel organization and a clear mind. Slapping together a desk, office chair and corner Ficus tree simply won’t emulate the professional environment you need, when your office also doubles as a sometimes-storage area, sometimes-playroom. Devoting an area entirely to work is step one in the process of setting up a home office – but how to make the most effective, clutter-free use of the space, once you’ve got it?
Your home office will help you keep track of life’s little details – and those details are different for every family and job. What do you need to best accomplish the tasks at hand? What sort of environment – colors, tools, layout – puts you the most readily into “work mode”?
An illustrator may want to devote a larger area to tabletop space, for example, than will a homeowner who simply wants an organized place to pay the bills. Taking the time to paint your office and create an atmosphere that inspires creativity and productivity can be a worthwhile investment.
Consider the basics.
What will be the primary function(s) of your office? Some of the basic components of an office may be unnecessary for your purposes, so you may need to improvise to create a sense of order that fits into your plans. Generally speaking, however, most offices/Command Centers include: a work surface, office supplies (including electronics), ingoing/outgoing mail boxes and a filing system.
Make it easy to act.
One of the primary reasons papers pile up – and, subsequently, get lost or forgotten – is because your system is too simplistic to fit the complicated, overlapping timelines that many of our lives contain. As we’re fond of putting it, “Act or file – don’t pile!;” consider making multiple categories for your papers, not simply “important now” or “deal with later.”
Some of these categories could be: to do, to scan, to shred, to file, to save for taxes, etc. You can delineate your categories by date in a set period of time – to-do today, tomorrow, next week, in October, etc. – as long as the system allows you to understand readily that the papers in each file are relevant to a specific time or action.
We know, the proverbial skeletons in your closet – in this case, likely boxes of past paperwork you aren’t eager to re-examine – can make the task at hand seem daunting. Get your space and organizational system in order and start with the newest work to give yourself the confidence boost that comes with completing a task, then try going by our old standby: the idea that you can do ANYTHING for 15 minutes a day!
Corral all of your old papers and work into one place, and immediately throw out anything that is clearly junk. Promise yourself you’ll dedicate at least 15 minutes to sorting and filing what’s left – chances are, you’ll find it easy to go beyond the time you’ve allotted, once you start.
If you find you need a little extra assistance in setting up your own command center, don’t let the paperwork and stress build up any longer; call Organizing Boston, as a personal organizer in Boston and its surrounding regions, we will work to get your personal finances, business and office feng-shui back on track.