It’s not hard to fall behind on organization in the workplace or at your home desk. When you do, you might find yourself buried in a mess of clutter. The coffee mugs, notebooks, papers, pens, and everything else inevitably pile up and make your life a little harder. Finding necessary items is a task on its own, and every task on your to-do list is bound to take much longer than it should. If clutter is holding you back, make your life easier and take action!

Decluttering is as easy as following three steps.

Sort, Stow, and Select.

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First, sort through your clutter. Take a good look at your desk and start putting similar items together. Stack up print-outs and memos, with the most important on top for easy access. Pile those pens up. Put your water bottle, coffee mug, and that box of granola bars into a group. Once it’s all sorted, it’s time for the next step!

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Now, stow it away. Do you really need your wallet and keys at arm’s reach throughout the day? Non-essential work items like these can easily be stored in a desk drawer or in your bag without causing an inconvenience. That stack of papers should be tucked away in a paper tray, and that pile of pens can go in a pen cup. Once you’ve moved all of your items to their proper locations, you’ll find that the essentials are all that’s left! This may sound minor, but without these distractions in the way, it will be much easier to focus on the task at hand.

Finally, select the items you need for a specific task, and make sure they go back to the right spot once you’re done. If the only items in front of you are the ones you need at the time, there should be no problem staying on track. Rather than having a desk full of reminders of other tasks you need to complete, you’ll have just the essentials and plenty of room to get your current task done. Repeating the process and getting everything back to its proper place will ensure your workstation stays free of clutter, and your day stays free of distractions!

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Try It Out!

Now, this all seems obvious, but you may be surprised at how beneficial these steps are. No more knocking things over, shuffling through random papers, or getting distracted by your phone. Once your items are sorted and stowed, all you’ll have left is the ideal workspace. Give it a try! It should only take a few minutes, but it will save you hours in time you would have spent rummaging through clutter.

Once your desk is sorted out, apply these steps to your room and let us see how it looks! We’d love to see how decluttering has brightened up your environment. Snap a quick Instagram photo and remember to tag #MyAshleyHome.