How To Declutter An Office In 4 Simple Steps

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As a stay at home mom, I am responsible for many things in my home.  Some of them are paying bills on time and organizing documents that come into our home for our children and pets. But I also use my office for my blog, for homeschooling my son, and for organizing appointments we have throughout the year.  Needless to say, the office in our home sees a lot of action, and if it is cluttered, well, that just slows us down. So knowing how to declutter an office comes in very handy.

When my own home office is clean and decluttered, it functions for me in the best way possible. Check out my tips for decluttering below.

Here are 12 ways to find the motivation you need to clean…

How to declutter a office

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Why Should You Declutter Your Office Space?

Decluttering your office space can do many things for you such as:

  • Help you focus
  • Create a tranquil, creative, peaceful place to work on tasks
  • Allow for better functionality for the whole family
  • Create better organization for your home

But where do you start decluttering an office when you don’t know how?  I am going to give you the steps I use to tidy up my own office…

How to declutter a office

How To Declutter An Office In 4 Simple Steps:

1//  Visualize Your Office Without Clutter

Visualize your space as a clean and tranquil place where you are ultimately productive and effective in what you are trying to accomplish. This will give you the motivation to not only get started, but to keep pushing through the mess until you attain your vision.

2//  Plan Where To Start

Make a plan of action by knowing where you want to start and how much time you have to spend on decluttering your office space. If you only have 15 minutes to declutter each day in order to reach your decluttering goal, then start with the area in your office that will make the most impact.

3//  Divide Out Your Items Into Categories

These categories may change for your circumstances, but in general the categories you will need to declutter your office are as follows:

  • Scan
  • File
  • Trash
  • Recycle
  • Shred
  • Move
  • Keep

Go through items one at a time and place them in the correct category.

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4//  Bring Your Office Decluttering Full Circle

Make sure that you take action on the category piles you just made.  ‘Move’ things out of the office that do not need to be there.  ‘Shred’ personal and identity showing papers and documents.  ‘Recycle’ anything that needs to be recycled.  ‘Scan’ papers you can store online.  ‘File’ documents that need to be filed because they cannot be scanned.

Everything else goes in the trash.

How to declutter a office

Things That Can Be Removed From An Office Right Away

If you don’t know exactly where to start, I would suggest grabbing a garbage bag (I like these because they are sturdy) and just getting rid of all the trash first. Here are some items you can start with:

  • Old cords
  • Outdated notes, memos, papers
  • Empty wastebaskets
  • Unused files or file systems
  • Old containers
  • Unused books
  • Old Printers
  • Broken Computers
  • Notepads and other overflow office supplies
  • Anything that does not work
  • Pens that don’t write
  • Office supplies you don’t need
  • Donate old phones/ electronics
  • Anything you don’t use in the office should be moved out of the office.
How to declutter a office

Keep Clutter Away By Organizing Your Office:

The best way to keep clutter out of your office so you do not have to declutter your office again in the future, is to get organized. If you organize your papers, and other office items, your office will be more functional.

Shop Items That Will Help You Keep Your Office Clutter-Free:

Desktop File Organizer – Check Price On Amazon

Decorative File Box – Check Price On Amazon

How to declutter a office

Must Haves To Keep Office Clutter Away

There are only 3 things that I recommend every office have in order to keep an office clutter-free!

  • Shredder – If you decide to buy a shredder…WHICH I HIGHLY RECOMMEND! Be sure to buy one that does a cross cut, not just a basic shred.  This will help keep your personal identifying document  information even more hidden from identity theft.  I use this shredder because it is affordable and has the features I need in my home office.
  • Garbage Bin
  • File System – Whether a file cabinet or a file box, some sort of filing system is needed. I use this file box and it works just find for my family.

How to declutter a office
Open file folder drawer with many multicolored files containing personal finance documents

How To Create An Easy To Use Filing System

If you don’t have a big expensive filing cabinet, it is okay.  I use a file box like this one.  It is small, inexpensive, and easy to use.  It gets the job done without spending a lot of money or taking up a lot of floor space with a big filing cabinet.

I love that these labels are already done and ready to use.

Create files for the following categories:

  • Folder for Each Car
    • Insurance
    • Work done
    • Receipts
  • Insurance
    • Medical
    • Eye
    • Dental
  • A File for Each Child
    • Medical
    • School
  • A File for Each Pet
    • Medical
  • Home
    • Insurance
    • Improvements
    • Receipts
  • Appliances
    • Manuals
    • Warranties
  • Benefits (optional)
  • Taxes
    • State
    • Local
How to declutter a office

Keep Your Office Desk Clean And Clutter Free With These Tips

  • Before you bring something new in, look to see if you already have one.  Then decide if you really need a new one.  If you do, then be sure to remove the old one from the space.
  • Only keep the necessities you use constantly on the top of your desk and within easy reach.  Everything else should be placed in drawers, cabinets, or containers and hidden away.
  • Straighten up each day when you are finished working.  Put things back where they belong and make sure your office clutter is nowhere in sight when you leave for the day.
  • Recognize any trouble spots and think of a solution for that particular space.  For instance, if the right corner of your desk keeps collecting paper piles, try placing this sorting tray there to at least keep them organized as they pile up for easy filing later.
  • Take a picture of your before and after so you can remember what things looked like before decluttering and organizing your office.  This will allow you to be vigilant about clutter creeping back in and polluting your space again.
  • If there are a lot of cords and wires around your desk and in your office, find a way to corral them using something like this cable sleeve.

Related Post: BlueKey World Cable Clip Organizer Review

Best Organizing Products For A Clutter-Free Office

file sorter

Happy Decluttering!


P.S. – Make sure you can refer back to this post for help! Pin It to keep it filed!

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