How to Clean a Messy Office

If seeing the stacks of papers and folders on your desk every morning provides you with enough of a jolt that you no longer need a cup of coffee to wake up, it's probably time to clean and organize your office. Even if you don't want to completely revamp your workspace, there are a few easy things you can do to make it a more pleasant place to work and easier to file and find things.

Set the mood. Make your computer screen easier on your eyes by adjusting the display so your resolution is maximized and the screen is about the same brightness as your environment. Be sure you don't sit too close to the screen and take a break from the computer every half hour or so.

Related: How to Clean Your Home Office Fast

Homedics Messaging Center ShredderClear up space. Have a shredder nearby so you can get rid of sensitive items like statements and receipts you no longer need, pronto. If you don't have mounds of paper to shred, the Homedics Black and Decker Paper Shredder and Messaging Center ($100, left) is a cute space-saving option that hangs on the wall and has a magnetic white board and a pocket for things you want to save. Swingline Stack and ShredIf, on the other hand, you have tons of bills and documents to destroy, check out the Swingline Stack and Shred ($250, right) which shreds 100 pieces at a time!

The Container Store Cable IDsClean up cables. Wires easily mount up: computer, printer, phone, mouse, keyboard, monitor, camera, iPod headphones, etc. In the January 2011 issue of Good Housekeeping, we highlighted my tricks for cord control and readers told us they really loved the Container Store Cable IDs ($7) I use for identifying cords. They save me the trouble of having to follow a cord all the way back to its source to find out what it's attached to.

Another option: Logitech Wireless MouseGo wireless. It used to be you had to sacrifice performance when you chose wireless devices, but this isn't the case with new highly responsive mice and keyboards. Logitech and Microsoft both have bright colored ones that cut down cord clutter and jazz up your desk.

Related: Tips to Control Clutter

File Away. Grouping similar files (say, all the charity donation receipts) and forms (like medical insurance claims) together in color-coded folders reduces paper clutter and makes it easier to find things quickly. "Tote" style file holders stand up by themselves on your desk. If you opt to go the paperless route, there are also digital file organizers available. iColorFolder lets you assign folders different colors so you can readily identify and find what you need. As an added bonus, these additions of color add a dash of design and burst of energy to your workplace.

How do you keep your office organized? Let me know your tips and tricks in the comments!

- by Rachel Rothman

More from Good Housekeeping: