At this point in the year, many of us have adjusted to working from home—or as best as we can, anyway. We've perfected the WFH uniform (thank goodness for athleisure) and added some helpful upgrades to our home offices. But by far, the single best thing we've done since we've moved all ops to our kitchen tables and living rooms is this: We clean it all up at the end of the day. This is especially important if you don't have a separate, designated office space in your home.
Taking a few minutes after you sign off to clear up the daily clutter (i.e., your mouse, chargers, pens and papers) helps to create a more definitive end to your day. It signals to your brain that your work "here" is done. A crucial cue when "here" is "home" and you can't actually leave it like you would your office.
Don't just take our word for it: “Even if it's the dining room table or the kitchen table—that can be your workspace—but you want to have a place to go and put it away, so that you can then repurpose that space for the next event," organizing guru and The Home Edit cofounder Joanna Teplin told us recently.
And while this may sound like yet another tedious chore to tackle, it's actually much simpler than it sounds. “One of the things that we always have to suggest is having a cart next to you while you're working, so when you're done working, you can close your laptop, put your notebooks and your pens all away and literally roll it out away until the next time it is time for work,” Teplin added.
Personally, I've repurposed an old apple crate as my "work box" that I place all of my work-related things into and store on a bookshelf behind my kitchen table, where I set up shop for the day. One of my friends, who lives in a small studio apartment, does a similar thing but uses a large tote instead. She stows everything work-related inside it and then hangs it on a doorknob.
It takes all of two minutes, keeps your home neater and your mind clearer. Try it out and thank us later.