Mission: Organize My Desk

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter then you’ve already heard the news that I’ve recently moved into a new apartment.  I’ve been so busy trying to make this move happen: pack, move it all, unpack, buy furniture and kitchen essentials, etc that I haven’t really had much time to think about how I want things set up.  My main issue for the last few days has been my desk.

I bought this desk at Ikea (My new favorite store – minus the fact that you could get completely lost in a store and never come out again!).  I bought it in a rush – I was just about to check out with my two baskets full of stuff when I saw the sign “$20 Desk”.  I liked the color and I began putting it in my cart.  My good friend Nadia, who was shopping with me, instantly stopped me and asked me to picture just how big a 28 inch desk is.  The girl has seen me study – she knows I am the type of person who needs to spread everything out.  I told her I could handle it and brushed off her concern as I heaved the heavy box into my cart. (Here is the desk if you’re interested)

Once it got it home, I realized why the desk was $20: there are a bazillion pieces.  Two hours and a few curse words later, my desk was set up and ready for stuff to be put onto it.

First thing I did was put every box that has anything to do with school, genealogy, bill paying, and important documents near the desk.  I was motivated and excited and ready to make this the best work space ever.   Just as I began pulling stuff out of the boxes, I became distracted and left the mess be.

For the next two days I ignored the mess – too afraid to go near it.  Seeing all of the boxes and papers and stuff just left me overwhelmed.

But the next day I sat down, determined to deal with the mess once and for all and restore order to this corner of my apartment.

I began with all of the table top “tools” – pens, pencils, highlighters, white-out, etc.  I put it all on the floor and organized it into categories.

Then I put all of the piles away into my desktop pen organizer thingy and 2 plastic box containers.  The stuff in the plastic box containers are extras or stuff I don’t use often.

Then I decided to take a tackle at the paper….and OH THE PAPER.

Miss Kitty offered to help too - she loves to sit and roll around on papers.

 Since my desk area is a multi-function area (not just genealogy) I decided to put the non-genealogy papers away first.  So I put my school pages into a binder (been meaning to start that binder for a while).  Then I put all of my blank lined paper into a green hanging folder and into the filing cabinet.

From there, I could easily see the supplies that I was running low on or need to replace.  So I decided to create a shopping list – perfect timing too with all of the school supply sales going on:

  • Page protectors
  • Dividers – time to redo all of them and make them a bit more uniform
  • Magazine box
  • 3/1 inch binders.  It is time to replace some of my more worn binders.
  • Printer paper
  • Black printer ink
Since I have more papers than I have time to put away tonight, so I’ve made a plan to get it done in the next two weeks:
  • I will file a minimum of 10 genealogy papers into the proper binders every day (with an exception of this Tuesday, July 12, because it is my five year anniversary with my boyfriend and we are celebrating AND Friday July 15 because I will be seeing the final Harry Potter movie ever – and frankly, I’m just not sure if there is life after Potter).
  • Each binder will be cleaned (basic wipe down) and have a new title sheet printed.
  • Any document or page containing notes will be scanned to my computer, saved in the proper digital folder, and the notes will be uploaded to Evernote AND OneNote (I’m still experimenting to see which one I like better)
Breaking everything down into bite-sized chunks makes it much easier to complete – I try not to look at the massive amount of paper I have (all those poor trees…) because I get overwhelmed and then just don’t do anything.  So instead, I’m focusing only on what needs to be done that day – everything else can wait.  If I get the inspiration to do more, great.  And if not, that’s ok too.
So what are your biggest organization dilemmas?  Want to follow along with me and post some pictures of your journey to get organized?  I’d love to see ‘em!
Disclosure: I have no material or monetary connections to Ikea, other than I love the prices at their stores and I find them incredibly easy to get lost in.  I also don’t have any material or monetary relationships with any office supply store that is selling school supplies at amazing prices – I just love school supplies – they make me happy.  I also don’t have any monetary or material connections to Harry Potter, J.K Rowling, or Warner Bros – I just am a die-hard Harry Potter fan and I’ve been following the series since I was 7 and I’m pretty scared to see it (and my childhood with it) end.
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5 Responses to Mission: Organize My Desk

  1. I need to get all my papers, analyzed, scanned, and filed. I love finding stuff, but not so much on adding info and filing. So my first step is to get papers separated by surnames, added to a binder (still deciding how to do this, I have started my first surname binder.) and then I will need to analyze the info, scan and add info into my genealogy program.

    I get overwhelmed but need to break it down to bit size pieces like you said.

    Congrats on the new apartment. My daughter will be moving into a dorm next month and we have been shopping for that. Yikes.

  2. Good for you for facing up to the desk mess – I end up doing that same thing almost every weekend and can’t figure out why the mess keeps coming back. (And I share your love for office/school supplies – spent a happy Saturday morning at Staples last weekend – it was all I could do to keep from buying multicolored pens, erasers, and paper clips – so tempting!)

  3. Happy Blogoversary, Ellyse!

  4. Happy Blogiversary!

  5. Happy Blogiversary, Elsye . . . here’s to many many more!

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