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Boost Productivity By Streamlining Your Office Space
Walking around the office, it’s always interesting to see how different associates organize their desks and offices … or in some cases, don’t really organize them. When I see a messy desk, it makes me feel nervous. My personal workflow is incredibly streamlined: I pull one client file, work on it with complete focus for 20–30 minutes, and then put it away and take a break or move on to the next case.
That means my desk stays very neat, and that helps me stay organized and focused. While it’s not impossible to focus with other files around, it is more difficult, and studies have shown two important things: 1. A cluttered physical environment leads to higher cortisol levels and more stress; and 2. Multitasking isn’t actually possible. If I can only focus on one case file at a time, why have more than one file around? Everything else is just noise.
The neat thing about the connection between tidying up and your mental space is that it works both ways: When your mind is focused and your mood is good, your physical space is likely to reflect that. But if you’re feeling some brain fog and are in need of a mood boost, you can often achieve that simply by making a few changes to your environment. Put a few things away in your desk that you don’t need at hand. Put files back that you aren’t currently working on. Close some browser tabs or organize your bookmarks on your internet browser.
There are all kinds of occasions that prompt us to clean house (or office!) from spring-cleaning, preparing for a move or garage sale, or getting a wild hair to downsize and donate or toss out unused items. But if you need an excuse this month, let the first week of August’s National Simplify Your Life Week be it.
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