By Aimee Rhodd

The New Year brings with it all kinds of “fresh start” and “new year, new you” sentiments. So much so that there’s actually a day dedicated to cleaning off your desk. It’s called—wait for it—Clean Off Your Desk Day!

You could just swipe your forearm across the top of your desk and “clean it off” onto the floor. No judgment, but that doesn’t exactly make for an organized workspace. It truly doesn’t take much to create a tidy space and increase your productivity at the same time. Just a few hacks, some creative zhushing and maybe an afternoon of your time, and you’ll be celebrating Clean Off Your Desk Day like a boss.

Get your cords under control.

How can you possibly work productively when you spend half of your time trying to untangle cords and move wires out of your way? Here are some quick and clever hacks to put your cords in their place.

Install a wire basket under your desk with a few hook screws, like these. You can find wire baskets just about anywhere. We have some cute ones at Gordmans, by the way.

  1. Screw enough hooks into the underside of your desk to hold your basket. Four should do, but it depends on the size and weight of the basket. Obviously, this will only work with wood and particle board desks. If you have a metal desk, consider attaching magnets under your desk and using a metal basket so it’ll hold.
  2. Neatly arrange power strips and any excess cordage in the basket.
  3. Attached the basket to the screws or magnets.

You can also attach the plug end of the cord to your desk or computer with binder clips to keep them neat and handy, like this:

You can even use binder clips in pretty colors to keep it cute, like these from Gordmans. We did! You can also affix labels to the clips to identify what cord goes to which device.

See the writing on the wall.

The easiest way to get stuff off your desk? Put it on your wall!

Get a wall organizer that allows you to personalize your space. These organizers from Gordmans let you leave messages, post pictures or papers, hold utensils and hang small items like keys or lanyards. And how cute are they?!

You can also hang an old window shutter on the wall and use it as a mail holder. Just slide envelopes and papers in between the slats. You can easily paint and distress the shutter to give it a modern farmhouse look, if that’s your thing.

Pegboards are also super handy. We love this one that comes in cool colors and includes bins and other hardware. You can find tons of pegboard accessories online and at hobby and hardware stores. Plus, pegboards come in various sizes, which is useful if you are short on space.

Contain yourself.

When it comes to desk organization, you have to sweat the small stuff. Paper clips, staples, rubber bands, tacks—they all need a dedicated place to live so they won’t get lost and you won’t lose your mind trying to find them.

A small tackle box or ice cube tray is a perfect choice for tiny items because they have multiple compartments and they can typically fit inside a drawer.

Another cool idea is to affix magnets to the underside of your desk, put your small items in closed mason jars and attach the jar tops to the magnets. Then whenever you need a paper clip, you just pop the jar off the magnet, open the jar, get your clip and put it back. Your desk doesn’t have to be metal. Simply get a set of craft magnets like these with adhesive and affix them beneath your desk. Easy peasy.

Papers, the bane of every workspace, can be contained in baskets or cute lidded boxes (both of which you can find at Gordmans). Get a different container for each type of paper: receipts, bills, medical records, etc. Then label the containers so you always know what goes where.

Recycle, reuse, rejoice!

Possibly the most fun and personalized way to organize your desk is to transform things around your house into handy desk helpers.

Have an old frame? Instead of a picture, put some pretty printed fabric or paper behind the glass. Then use it as a dry erase board. Just be sure you use dry erase markers or your to-do list will be your permanent to-done list.

Create a multi-compartment organizer from used (and obviously clean) tin cans.

  1. Remove labels from cans.
  2. Paint the outside of the cans with your favorite color spray paint. You can paint the insides, too, if you like, but it’s not necessary. Let them dry.
  3. Put the cans together in whatever formation suits your fancy. We like using 10 cans to create a triangle shape (turned sideways, place 4 on the bottom, 3 in the middle, 2 on top of that and one at the very top). Glue the cans together with hot glue.
  4. The organizer can sit on top of your desk, on a shelf or can even be hung on the wall by attaching a couple of hooks.

Are you totally psyched to clean off your desk now?! Well, we’re happy to be of help. Now, go! Organize like the wind!