If you couldn’t tell by the DeskGlam subscription box, I’m a pen + paper girl at heart. I have always preferred writing things down on a notepad over clicking on a keyboard. But for organization’s sake, there are some things that are just easier on a computer than they are if you were to do them on paper (take this blog post for instance)! Computer organization seems to be forgotten about in the when thinking about being organized, neat and clean…but it’s super important, not only for your focus and concentration, but also for the processing time and overall health of your computer!
So, onto Our Five Favorite Tips for Computer Organization!
1:Choose a File System that works and Stick To It!
File systems on the computer, for some reason, are the most difficult for us to commit to – we love to pile stuff on our desktop and forget about it (sounds like our regular desks, right?!). The best advice here is to approach the folders and files on your computer like those you may have in your file cabinet. I keep four files on my computer desktop at the most, and the titles are just general themes, so that everything fits into one of the topics. I took a quick snapshot of my desktop so you can take a peek! I have four folders: DeskGlam, DeskGlam Blog, Personal and PhotoShop Items. These are the items I work most on, so they should get the main folders on the desktop. On the inside, I have more folders that further divide everything. For instance in my ‘Personal’ folder, I have a folder for ‘Taxes’, ‘Resumes’, ‘Documents’, etc. Doing this makes things SUPER easy to find, so that I’m not looking everywhere for a document that I know I saved ‘somewhere’!
Don’t you love the personalized icons for the Desktop folders?? Spoiler Alert: ’ll show you how to do that in the next post 🙂
2: Leave Your Desktop as Clean As You Can!
When you sit down to your work laptop or your desktop, the last thing you want to feel when your screen comes up is that overwhelming anxiety of seeing 45 different files of all kinds sitting on your desktop. It’s too much! Just like you want to walk into a clean desk, kitchen, or bedroom, there’s something satisfying about sitting down to work and seeing a bright beautiful wallpaper image that doesn’t have a billion files on top of it! So clean off your desktop – delete everything that doesn’t need to be there and place it in one of the file folders that we talked about above. If you are working with a few documents that need to be readily available, that’s totally cool – leave them on your desktop, but then when you’re done, go ahead and file them away for good.
If you’ve never used Evernote before, it’s a total treat! I always have a thousand things that I’m thinking about and I used to save all of those notes in different Notepad files on my Mac. 100 notes later, it was really difficult to keep track of everything and go through all my files just to see a few notes that I left here and there. Cue Evernote! Evernote is an app that’s designed for note-taking, organizing and archiving. Basically you can create a “note” about anything and put it into a designated ‘notebook’ of the same theme (again, think of the file folder system we talked about in Tip 1!”. But all of the note text is searchable! It’s amazing! You can also add in pictures, file attachments, hyperlinks, whatever you want! I also use Evernote as a content calendar for DeskGlam (see picture below)! It’s super useful for a whole bunch of things, but especially for note-taking!
4: Use Asana!
The other thing I used to do with Notepad on my Mac is make a whole bunch of to-do lists that I would inevitably lose track of because they would be saved along with my random notes, thoughts and ideas. So I could never pick up where I left off – #frustrating. So, I moved over to Asana! Besides the fact that Asana syncs with the app on my tablet, my phone and my computer (yay for synchronized organization!), I also love the fact that I can create to-do lists and organize them by topics! So I have a separate list for what needs to be done on the blog, a separate list for what needs to be done on the website, etc. I do use this alongside a written to-do list because I like the feeling of checking things off, but it’s a great way to keep myself focused on larger projects I’m working on and tasks I don’t want to forget.
5: Empty Your Trash!
Oh. My. Gosh. I accumulate so much trash on my computer…seriously. Forget getting my email inbox to zero, I’d much prefer to have my trash can at zero! Cleaning out your trash can (for Mac users) or your recycle bin (Windows users) is one of the best things you can to help speed your computer up, better it’s performance and add hard drive space! When you put items into your trash bin on the computer, that doesn’t mean they’re deleted – it’s just moving it from one folder to another. Every week, I make sure to set aside time to go through what I’ve moved to the trash bin and figure out whether I can really trash it or not (these include partially downloaded files that never finished, music I’m not listening to, ebooks that I thought I would read but didn’t get around to, old work documents from a company I don’t work for anymore, etc.). When I’ve got my trash, I hit the ‘empty’ button and viola! A nice clean trash can and a happy computer!
Here’s hoping that these tips make working on your computer a little bit easier and help to make you a tiny bit more productive in your work!
As always, we’re open to your feedback! Let us know if there’s anything you’d like to read about on the blog! And if you haven’t yet, make sure that you signup for our DeskGlam box, which is delivered each month with all of the items you need to keep you productive, inspired and motivated at work!
Until next time, lots of #prettyproductivity love,