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What Belongs on Your Desk and What Does Not

By Sandy Schroeder

Workspaces are a very personal part of our lives. Sometimes we get into such a groove that we no longer even see the details on our desk unless someone points them out.

Business Insider steps up to point out things that do or do not work on our desks or in our workspaces.

The Harvard Business Review weighs in with a study that says, “Organization comes naturally to some, but for others, it's just not in their nature. Regardless, a messy desk can negatively impact productivity and your ability to perform tasks efficiently.”

Things to Delete from Your Workplace

See what you think and how it fits with your job.

Used Coffee Mugs or Paper Cups

When one deadline follows another, things like coffee mugs tend to accumulate, but a clean sweep every day can do a lot to avoid spills, coffee stains, and distracting clutter.

Legal Documents

Letting personal and business paperwork blend is a really bad idea, but just having legal documents floating around a work area is not advisable, according to many senior executives. This is information that should only be available to the specific people involved. Treating legal paperwork casually can invite misuse.

Lunch in the Office

Sometimes it’s unavoidable to eat while you work to keep the momentum going, but stepping away for lunch can clear your head and boost productivity. Many of the people that I know head outside if the weather works, following lunch with a short walk. They often come back with fresh ideas and more energy.


If you use a landline for business the smartphone can be a distraction. On the other hand, if your cell phone serves as a work assistant, then you may need both. According to a study published in the Journal of the Association for Consumer Research, a cell phone can be a distraction even when it’s off. 

Workspace Essentials

An Adjustable Desk Chair

Having an adjustable chair that provides good shoulder, back and pelvic support is crucial to avoid stressing out back muscles. The chair should be a custom fit for you, helping you sit up straight with your feet flat on the floor. Making do with a less-than-perfect chair can trigger body fatigue and headaches. I have known people who sat all day, every day, and eventually ran into issues with back and leg pain.

Options for Flexibility

Adjustable platforms for sitting or standing, hourly breaks to walk or stretch, and flexible hours work too.

Overall Planner

You may do everything online, but an overall paper planner that logs in appointments, dates, specifics and reminders can be a great backup or the main way to never miss a meeting or a deadline.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Houston, Tex.

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