Our desk-tops – electronically and physically – communicate to us and to others what we value. They illustrate what we spend our time doing and pursuing. And, they can shout what our working style is because of the visuals they provide to others.
Electronic desk-top: Dual-screens work best for me and the way I compartmentalize my work. Each screen has the same iconic tool bar at the bottom presenting the applications I use daily. My background desk-top has shortcuts to applications I use less often. In fact, I rarely see my desk-top screens because I keep so many documents, sites, and emails open to work on at any given moment.
Electronic clutter is just as unhelpful as a messy desk. Many time management experts recommend elimination of clutter in all its forms so that your mind is clear and your soul is unburdened from the to-do-list piles you (and others) see in a cluttered office. I both file and pile. What works for my thought-processing is likely a nightmare to those wanting a tidy, clear-desk work area. The key is to create a workspace that works best for you and what you need to accomplish each day.
Physical desk-top: The wood desk I carefully selected as a tool for helping my business grow twenty years ago continues to serve me well. The 30 by 62-inch surface holds my computer monitors and web-connecting box (modem), a printer, phone, working files for the day, and items of inspiration. These items of inspiration are what make each desk truly unique in any office.
Inspiring objects on my desk include the colorful five-inch elephant with raised trunk which was a gift from a class in India. The elephant stands on a dragonfly coaster that reminds me of my decade-long friend who reminds me to balance “mind, body, and soul”. Nearby is a three-inch clay model of the Piazza Del Miracol (Plaza of Miracles) in Italy – another gift from a friend who had traveled there and was sending encouragement post-9-11. Just in front of the Plaza is a carabiner keychain that I used to have on my luggage. It is green, black and silver and is emblazoned “NO FEAR”. A butterfly embossed with “Believe” and a funny frog with “LOVE” are near the Plaza too.
This grouping of objects might appear as clutter to some. For me, they are reminders of friends and travels. These objects remind me to smile, to be hopeful, and to do my best possible work at all times. And, when doing best-possible work seems challenging, these objects remind me to connect with nature, take a deep breath, and to return to present work while standing on the strong foundations of past projects and ongoing client work.
What is on your computer desk-top? What is on your physical desk-top?
What are you telling yourself? Others?
Workplace: Managing the moments of our day-to-day business lives takes work. Together, let’s explore what issues and activities affect us every day (or some days) that we go to work. – Jana