Declutter that desk

Get a fresh look for your office space as we ease back into work.


Nisthula Nagarajan

Published: Fri 8 Jan 2021, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Sat 25 Sep 2021, 2:04 PM

After a laidback holiday season, going back to work seems like a drag. Whether you work from home, in a cubicle or have a room to yourself, your office is a place that should encourage you to get in the flow of work. Of course, when you’re at work, you’re focused on your job and meeting countless deadlines, but doing that in a beautiful, comfortable space that is your own, can make a world of a difference. As we get back to work in 2021, give your office a new beginning with these tips.


It’s important to have natural light shine through your working space if possible. When working from home, make sure sunlight enters your room at some point of the day. It will make the space feel bigger and give you the energy to work efficiently as well. You can affix frosted film onto your window so sunlight is allowed into your space while maintaining privacy.


When you spend more than 40 hours a week staring at the same four walls, you’ll need some motivation to get you through those tough days. Choose a variety of sizes of simple, contemporary frames and fill them with photos of loved ones, artwork, or inspirational quotes you can gaze upon for a visual escape during the workday.


Install shelves into your office wall to add some depth to the room. If you’re in a cubicle you may not have space for regular shelves, so, use slender floating shelves that don’t stick out too much. Provide yourself with a little ledge on which you can place books, knickknacks, photos, stationery, etc. Add some personality with quirky bookends, which you can even make yourself!


Trim the edges of your table, drawers, filing cabinet with washi tape. For the uninitiated, washi tape is a decorative adhesive tape that has many uses but the intention is to add some personality to some office staples. Purchase a few patterns and go nuts! Add some pop to anything around to give you a visual and mental boost.


One of the most popular ways to add colour and warmth to your desk is to place a small plant or flowers on it. It can be a succulent, a bouquet of fresh flowers, or even an artificial plant to liven things up. Keep in mind how much sunlight your space gets and how much care the plant needs. Try small succulents for your desk or larger plants like weeping fig and aroid palm in your office.


It’s impossible to be productive in a mess. Finding that one contract in a mess of papers will waste an unnecessary amount of time. You can buy a corkboard to pin on your to-do list for the day and a calendar outlining all your meetings for the week, and place file, pencil and paperclip holders on your desk. Pick a colour scheme, rose gold for example, to match all your organisers.

Go back to work in the new year, renewed and refreshed from the holidays and carrying that energy as long as you can. Hopefully, once you add your own touch to your office space you feel more at home and ready to be productive, creative, and optimistic about 2021.

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