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Change Your Desk to Be More Productive

Want to get more done at work? Start by looking at your work area -- specifically, your desk.

 desk

(Photo Credit: DavidMartynHunt/Flickr)

Don't worry: we're not going to write yet another post about why you absolutely must switch to a standing desk, immediately. Although that's an option, the important thing is to tailor your work area to your personal style and needs.

"Our desk is just a desk that happens to be in an office, which is a larger collection of desks, right? Wrong," writes Rae Ann Fera at Fast Company. "The 'where' of your work greatly affects the 'how' of your work. Or rather, the 'how well.' Which is why there's been so much attention paid to the humble desk lately."

Here's what you should keep in mind when choosing a desk arrangement for your work space:

1. You need a system.

We could argue endlessly about the benefits of messy vs. clean desks, but when it comes right down to it, the most important thing is that you can find what you need, when you need it. Practically speaking, this means having some kind of filing system for important documents, both digitally and physically.

2. Invest in your space.

Fera points out that our surroundings affect our mood -- which means that even if you love your clutter, you better make sure your work area has a homey feel. Think cozy, not trash heap.

It's also a good idea to have some of your favorite things around you when you work, whether it's pictures of the beach you visit in the summer, or family portraits, or desk toys. You want to feel like you're at home while you're working. After all, you probably spend more time at your desk than you do on your couch.

3. Don't use your desk for anything other than work.

If you get into the habit of using your desk as storage for your personal paperwork. Keep those bills, thank-you notes, and other non-related documents and items away from your work area.

It's hard enough to concentrate on work. Pile your desk with distractions, and you'll find plenty of reasons never to get down to business.

Tell Us What You Think

Are you a messy desk person or a clean desk person? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the conversation on Twitter.

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