How to bring ‘Joy’ to your workspace and increase productivity!

Some ways to ‘Marie Kondo’ your workspace

You may have heard of the Japanese ‘tidying’ sensation Marie Kondo, who has developed her own organisation technique, called the ‘KonMari’ method, which she uses to help people tidy their living spaces. If not, we highly recommend you have a look at the method, there is currently a series on Netflix.

The technique involves sorting all items by category, rather than areas, and considering whether an item ‘Sparks Joy’, if not, Kondo says it should be disposed of, whilst at the same time thanking the item for its service.

I have started to use her suggestions at home and wondered how the Kondo method could be applied at work, to a desk or workspace.

A messy desk can affect productivity at work and can create a bad impression to colleagues or visitors to your workplace. Not to mention the time lost looking for misplaced items. Research has shown that people with messy desks are more frustrated and less efficient.

With all that in mind I’ve looked into a few ideas on how to ‘Marie-Kondo’ your workspace:

1. Writing Implements

If your desk is full of cheap, mismatched and unusable pens, are they bringing you joy? Special pens which make note taking a pleasure should be the ones you keep. The same can apply for notebooks and pads. Marie would recommend holding each pad in your hands and being honest about how it makes you feel.

2. Miscellaneous Items

Key rings, branded pens and freebies from events. These items somehow accumulate without your noticing and are part of office culture. If an item fills you with joy, then keep it, otherwise, it should go. It is also good to get into a habit of saying no to things you don’t need!

Other personal items should be kept to a minimum. Perhaps keep it to a couple of photographs and a nice note book or two.

3. Paper, Post & Cards

Marie Kondo says you should tidy your paperwork as one category. When it comes to papers, you can categorise papers and digital files in broad categories and then label them by asking yourself, ‘Where would I look if I needed to find this document?’ Everything should have a place without over organising and the risk of forgetting where you have filed things. You may be tempted to hold onto a note or card for sentimental reasons. But, if it doesn’t pass the joy test, let it go.

4. Drinking Receptacles

When it comes to cups, mugs and glasses most of us will have a lot of options. But there’s probably one perfect mug that keeps your coffee hot, never drips and feels comforting to use. Why not keep that one and lose the rest?

5. Make it a habit

Finally, you should make these organisation techniques a habit. Take a few minutes at the end of the day to give your desk, or workspace, the once-over: file any loose papers, bin any rubbish, and take anything you need to bring home with you!

Let me know if you try or already use any of these techniques at work by commenting below.

This article was written and researched by Abigail Stiles, Business Administration Apprentice

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Photo by Ferenc Horvath on Unsplash

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