Top 10 Ways to Clean Up Your Desk

I’ve been on an organization tear around here lately. I’ve sorted, labeled, eliminated clutter, and dusted my office—and house—to within an inch of its life. Here are my favorite tools for reigning in the mess.

  1. Forget filing. I just stuff all my contracts, paid bills, magazine clippings, and other paper into an envelope and send them off to There they are scanned and uploaded so I can find them whenever I want them. Eventually I hope to replace my filing cabinet with a comfy chair.
  2. I had a box of unfiled business cards that I hoped one day to enter into my contact manager. Not anymore. I shipped them all off to (along with all those receipts from Goodwill and the cash register receipts I need for my taxes). The service scanned them all in so I can search for someone by name instead of rifling through a pile of cards.
  3. Instead of hording books I’ve already read—or will never read—I’m exchanging them for books I want at
  4. I turned my garage clutter into cash by selling all those kids toys on My mail man did all the heavy lifting.
  5. I got cash for my old cell phones—and cleared out a drawer—using
  6. I stopped ordering checks. Instead I use my banks online bill paying system. I have better records, my bills get paid faster, I don’t need stamps, and I don’t have to store old or new checks.
  7. I set up a Google Calendar for my kids and entered their music lessons, school projects, and chores on it. Then I set it up so the reminders go to their cell phones as text messages. Now I don’t have to nag because Google does it for me.
  8. I ask Sandy ( to remind me when it’s time to give the dog a pill, take my vitamins, or change the water filter so I don’t have to litter the house with ineffective post-it note reminders.
  9. When I’m driving or on my daily constitutional and have a brainstorm, I use my cell phone to tell it to and have it sent to me via email so I don’t have to write on credit card receipts or the back of my hand.
  10. I haven’t done this yet but I plan to sell my old CDs, games, and movies at (Actually I thought I’d get my tween to handle this.) Has anyone tried this?

7 thoughts on “Top 10 Ways to Clean Up Your Desk

  1. Wow……great information and I know exactly who to tell…… thank you!

  2. Great tips! I found you via Diane & the Downtown Women’s Club. I’m really excited about prospect of getting rid of paper to help organize my office.

    I’m wondering between Pixily and Shoeboxed, which one you’d recommend for receipts/bills because they both seem to have similar services. I’m looking for the best option to scan and digitize so I can possibly work with a virtual assistant or bookkeeper.

    Cheers, Colette

  3. Love it! What a great post. Stumbled across this blog by accident, but will be back often. Smart, easy to implement tips. Thanks!

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