Is 2017 Your Year for a Clean Desk?


“If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?” Albert Einstein

In honor of National Clean Off Your Desk Day (today), we asked some of our directors to describe the items on their desk right now. Check out this list one of your colleagues, Florinda Bryant, sent us:


What about you? What’s on your desk right now? And which camp (no pun intended) do you fall into when it comes to the merits of neatness vs. messiness?

I like it neat

If you’re ready for a tidier office landscape, we offer two popular organizers and their different approaches for keeping a clean desk.

1. Marie Kondo’s book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up has sold more than 2 million copies and made the professional organizer a household name. Watch Kondo at work as she helps Fast Company senior editor Erin Schulte tidy her desk.

2. Marla Cilley is a housekeeping guru better known as “The FlyLady,” who mentors more than 400K Facebook followers on all things cleaning and organization. In her blogpost “Desk Chaos Control” FlyLady’s offer this end-of-the-day routine for your office:

  1. Clear off your desk, and straighten your top drawer.
  2. Start a To-Do list for tomorrow.
  3. Make a list of calls to make.
  4. Turn off computers and other appliances (coffee pot, copy machines, etc.)
  5. Pack up your stuff to go home: lunch bag, brief cases, homework, comfortable shoes, etc.
  6. Check your piles and put projects in order of priority for the morning.
  7. Turn off lights.
  8. Leave your desk in wonderful shape to welcome you in the morning. Look back on your office and smile.

I like it messy

Maybe you’re happier and more productive surrounded by clutter. Some research suggests messiness may even be linked to higher intelligence. If that sounds good to you, check out Mary Randolph Carter’s book, A Perfectly Kept House is the Sign of a Misspent Life. This longtime creative director for Ralph Lauren can help you embrace your clutter more beautifully.

Whichever way you roll, we hope getting your workspace just like you like it will help 2017 be your most productive year ever!


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About Gina Calvert

Gina Calvert is the Senior Marketing Writer for ACTIVE Network, providing marketing and business resources for active lifestyle organizations across a range of markets, including government, nonprofits, camps, schools and endurance events, for more than six years.