Thinking Out Loud

How to Stay Organized in the Office

By Keryn Nicolson

Every Monday morning your mind inevitably drifts off to some far off place at least once while at work: Bahamas perhaps? It helps if you streamline your daily duties and make your workspace a positive place to spend a huge chunk of your day. Here are a few tips that may help you stay more organized at your desk, or wherever you call work:

Add some life: This is so “hippy” of me to say this but add a damn plant to your desk! It’s so weird how having a little lively thing to take care of can actually make your desk space better. Like Alec Baldwin said in some movie: “People with plants live longer, than people without plants”. That’s good enough for me.

Snack Regularly: I mean, this one may seem obvious but so many of us forget to eat and drink water while working. If you’re only eating once at lunch in eight hours, that’s a problem. Try packing some plant based snacks to eat several times throughout the day if you can. Hummus and sliced veggies w/ lemon, fresh berries, nuts, a yogurt and spruce up your water with some zero sugar electrolytes and fresh lime. Being more alert will inevitably help to keep you on target and organized.

Know what to throw away and when: I am so guilty of keeping all papers for like, ever. Here’s a general cheat sheet on what to keep and for how long:

One month: credit card receipts, withdrawal and deposit slips. Toss after you’ve checked bank statement at the end of the month.

One year: Paycheck stubs, monthly bank, credit card, brokerage, mutual-fund and retirement account statements.

Six years: W-2’s, 1099’s and other tax stuff, year-end credit card, brokerage and mutual-fund statements.

Keep for friggin ever: Tax returns, receipts for major stuff, real-estate records, licenses

The last one especially makes a big difference for me. I instantly feel better once I've tossed all unnecessary papers. Like I don't have it there to remind me anymore;)

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