Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Desk organization: Top it off

There are all sorts of way to make your desk interesting while keeping the calm that will let you get work done. Read more for some tips on how I keep my desk exciting and well organized.

Light it up!

Make sure you have good light for your desk. If you can, have your desk in front of a window to take advantage of day light. Studies show that day light is good for your mood and helps concentration.
For evening cramming, get a LED lamp. The white light is better for your concentration. More than that, the LEDs last longer than regular bulbs.
If you want to go into the cute decor realm, there are tons of options as far as fairy lights. They wouldn't suffice as your only light but do make a cute touch.

Hold your pens!

Get mini buckets or pen holders to store pens on top of your desk. It's easier access than trying to store pens in drawers. I use these buckets that I picked up at the $5 and less section of Target.

A cheaper DIY version is to use chipped cups or old mason jars. The Edward Elric cup that I had got broken so I use it to store my copics and other markers.

Hold your papers!

This is something that definitely depends on your organization style. Different people organize in different ways, so I'm just going to share the options that I take advantage of.

  • Magazine holders:  I use magazine holders to store my papers and notebooks for the term. Before getting magazine holders, I constantly had a stack of papers on my desk. Even if the stack was organized, it looked terrible on top of my desk and took up a lot of space. A magazine holder turned the stack vertical, giving me more space and a better look
  • Letter holders:  A good desk top organizer. Depending on how many letters you get, a smaller size may be better. I use my letter holder for storing pass codes, coupons and letters that don't require my immediate attention. This letter holder comes from a desk set. ($29, Amazon)
  • Cork Board: Easy to pick up from any craft or hobby shop and a great way to organize scraps of paper. When mounting, be certain to follow dorm guidelines. 

As always, be certain to go through these paper holders regularly. More than once I've realized that my letter holder was building up a back log.

Plan the days!

Get a desk calendar or a white board calendar to put up. I have my monthly calendar up right near my door so that I can see what I need to for the coming days.

Some people prefer desk calendars, a staple of any stationary or office supply store.

Get a plant!

This may sound totally crazy, but get a plant. It cleans the air in your room and gives a lot more cheer to your desk. Check with a local florist shop to find out what plants can survive your plant caregiving skills. Be absolutely honest with how much care you want to give your plant. Also take note of how much sunlight your room gets and where in the room you'll have your plant. If your room doesn't get any sunlight, you can always buy a plant light ($20).

I keep my plants right in front of my desk, where I can see them and they can see the sun.
I order my seeds from here and keep them in a window sill holder from Urban Outfitters.

UO no longer offers the one that I have but they do have a few similar designs. One ($39) and two ($39-49).

Spirit of the Season!

For each season, have some sort of cute desk topper.
For winter, I have a frosty reindeer and some felt pine cones. I put Christmas ornaments in tea cups, choosing colors that compliment my desk.
For spring, I have an easter egg.

Get a few things that will change up the feeling for your desk throughout the year. I personally start to get a little bit antsy about the organization of my desk after a few months so adding a decoration for the season can alleviate this feeling.

Do what you have to do!

Do whatever organizing will help you to study. What I suggest is just advice, not authority. If you have something that works well with you then share it in the comments.

I know some people that tend to have a very sloppy desk, just a slathering of papers, while others have nothing on top of their desk. Find a good balance for you.