I recently moved my office from out of my home and into a professional building. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.
I first started my business (in 1998) when my son was 12 months old. At the time, working part-time out of my home was ideal as it allowed me to spend more time with my son.
As my workload increased, however, it became harder to separate work from my personal life. Then, with the advent of social media and email overload, I experienced too many days when I felt like I was working around the clock and/or chained to my computer.
Moving my business out of my house has given me that “separation” that I’ve craved for a long time. (And quite frankly, not listening to my dogs bark during client calls is a definite plus!)
I thought moving my office would be a simple matter. I had my desk, a couple of file cabinets, and a bookcase out of my old office in a couple of hours.
It was the packing up that really opened my eyes to how lost I had become in my office — something that can happen to anyone who has been working in the same space for years.
Your sub-conscious affects your conscious
Once my furniture was gone, I was shocked at how dirty my office really was — even though I cleaned it regularly.
It was in that instant of standing in an empty room that I understood why you must keep your workspace immaculate.
Cobwebs on the ceiling, piles of paper, and lots of unnecessary “stuff” equals cobwebs on the brain — and unclear thinking.
Because I had to empty all my drawers so that I could lift the furniture, I took the time to clean out my files. What started off as an “easy” task ballooned into days of going through piles of paper.
I realized that although my files *looked* organized, they were anything but. I ended up recycling five bins of paper.
Even better, I culled four drawers of files down to one — and ended up throwing away YEARS of hard copy writing samples (all of which were covered in dust due to sitting on shelves, which tells you something).
I also realized I no longer needed many of my books and called Got Books, who carted away seven cartons of them. (Whew!)
At the end of the day, it took me a week to clean out my office, files, and assorted items. It was a lot of work but well worth the time and effort.
My new office is immaculate and pared down. For the first time, I’m able to use my entire desk because it’s not covered in piles of magazines, printed reports, and other junk.
And, I now have a good view of where I’m going . . . because my view is no longer obstructed by years of detritus.
Have you moved your office and/or done a total clean out? If so, what lessons did you learn?