Welcome to yet another edition of Running, Cupcakes and Life-Coaching! If you have missed any of the other installments, check them out!
This week, I want to talk about something that I need to improve. Let me set the scene- we have an extra room in our house that serves a dual purpose. It is the office and my closet. The master bedroom has only one closet and it is not big enough for Kito’s and my clothes, so I used the closet in the office. This setup works well because I get ready for work in the wee hours of the morning and I hate waking him up.
Where the arrangement falls short is with me. I have a terrible habit of just throwing my clothes on the floor and chairs. So when I need to sit down and work, I can’t until I pick up a bit. What ends up happening is I work at the dining room table and make a mess there or I clean the office instead of working.
This is inefficient.
Efficiency would be having a clutter-free, organized area of my house where I could sit down to work whenever it was time. Sometimes I make great strides toward a functional office/closet room and then I fall off the wagon. I seem to have some kind of mental block about it. But the truth is that I just don’t make it a priority.
Here are what I imagine to be the keys to success:
1. Comfort: A comfortable chair and desk or table. If you don’t enjoy sitting there, are you ever going to do it?
2. Good Lighting: I end up doing a lot of work in the evenings and early mornings when the light outside is not great. If the room is not well lit, I do not want to be there and my motivation is minimal.
3. Access to your tools: When I was in design school I needed fabric, scissors, a sewing machine, rulers, patterns, pens, pencils, paper… the list goes on. In my one bedroom apartment that was tricky but I converted my dining room into a workspace for a few years and the addition of a shelf made it possible. Now I only need simple things-pens, paper, sketch book, post its and a laptop. But I still make sure that the set of drawers holding these things is just next to the desk.
4. Tidiness: I am a mess. A messy mess. Imagine a redheaded tornado…that’s me. I know that if I were to keep things tidy as I went along and then spent a couple minutes each morning straightening everything up, it would be no problem.
5. Organization: Are your files in order? Both paper and computer files… Can you find the book you needed? How about your notepad? Keeping everything organized eliminates and time wasted searching. My house is organized but my computer is not. If I want to find photos from last year, I’m in trouble.
6. Warmth: No, I’m not talking about the temperature…although that is important too! I’m talking about the warmth of your workspace. Do you have pictures on the wall? Colors that you like? Personal touches? Add some.
The goal is to create a space where you are able to work easily and effectively…somewhere that lets your creativity flourish without clutter and noise (both in the literal and figurative sense.)
As I mentioned before, I pretty much fail at all of these. This is definitely a do as I say and not as I do situation.
So, let’s do this together! Whether it is a home office or a nook in a closet, let’s get our work spaces in order.
Stay tuned for my to-do list. And create yours! I want to see it!
What are your keys to a good workspace?
Some light reading on this topic: