Increasing Productivity Through an Organized Workspace

Aug 4, 2023 | Listen

Increasing Productivity Through an Organized Workspace

Struggling to keep up with the demands of a growing business while battling a messy desk? It’s a productivity roadblock you can’t afford. Beyond the visual chaos, clutter makes you lose focus, increases stress levels, and gets in the way of completing tasks crucial for business expansion. An organized workspace is key.

So, how do you get rid of the clutter?

Are there any practical organization systems you can use?

How can you maintain a clean, well-organized workspace to fuel productivity and drive your business forward?

In today’s episode, Gayle Gruenberg and I share practical strategies to regain control of your workspace. We discuss tips for decluttering, organizing, and creating a productive environment for your growing business.

Timestamps for this week’s episode

  • 02:37 Starting small when clearing up clutter will lead to an organized workspace,

  • 08:27 Establish criteria for keeping important papers so you can let go of unnecessary items.

  • 13:00 Prioritize proximity and importance when decluttering books and supplies for an organized workspace.

  • 20:20 Creating an organized workspace is an ongoing feedback, evaluation, and refinement process.

  • 26:40 To get closer to a productive workspace, start organizing. That first step will naturally lead to progress and transformation.

Starting small when clearing up clutter will lead to an organized workspace

Here’s how:

  • It builds momentum:

Clearing even a small section creates a sense of accomplishment, motivating you to continue.

  • You’ll overcome resistance:

It’s easier to start with a small area, especially if you’ve been living with clutter for a while.

  • The positive psychological impact:

You’ll feel productive once you clear some space, providing a positive mindset for continued decluttering.

Embracing the power of starting small sets the stage for a successful decluttering journey, energizing you to tackle the chaos with renewed energy and determination.

When decluttering start with one small section because it tends to build momentum and you feel a bit of accomplishment. Once you start, you'll want to continue.

Establish a criteria for keeping important papers for quicker decluttering

When organizing documents, focus on the papers supporting your business, such as receipts or records of major expenses. They may be necessary for financial or legal purposes. Vital personal documents like passports, birth certificates, or marriage certificates come next.

Then you can move on and discard papers that don’t serve a specific purpose, such as older bills or personal notes.

Setting criteria simplifies the decision-making process and reduces the stress of organizing paper clutter. Remember, it’s about balancing holding onto what’s truly important and freeing yourself from unnecessary items.

“When organizing your space, start fresh if possible, with a clear room, with your foundation pieces, your anchors, your desk, your chair, your bookcase first.” – Gayle Gruenberg

Prioritize proximity and importance when decluttering for an organized workspace

Being ruthless in selecting what to keep and what to let go is essential to optimize limited space. Consider the following strategies:

  • Determine what materials are truly necessary for your workspace.

Do you really need physical copies of books? Or will digital versions suffice? Assess each item’s relevance, frequency of use, and personal value to help you decide what goes and what stays.

  • Arrange items based on how frequently you use them of use.

Keep regularly used office and desk supplies within arm’s reach to maximize efficiency. You can also organize in concentric circles or layers, keeping those you don’t really use further away from your workplace or in additional storage spaces like closets.

  • Prioritizing what’s important.

Keep the items that have significant meaning or provide ongoing value. Identify the books and supplies that are vital to your work and personal goals and that you will refer to regularly. Let go of no longer relevant or necessary items to free space up for what truly matters.

These tips will help you achieve a well-organized workspace that maximizes efficiency and productivity, even in smaller work areas.

My most salient advice for anyone wanting to start an organizing project is just to start. It doesn't matter where you start, just start.

Creating an organized workspace is an ongoing feedback, evaluation, and refinement process

When decluttering and setting up your improved workspace, start with what motivates and challenges you, then clear the space and categorize your items. At this point, you can use an organizing system or containers to get things in order.

However, the process doesn’t stop there. You must evaluate your set-up regularly to identify what works well or needs improvement. This continuous feedback loop allows you to adjust and refine your workspace so that it stays optimized for productivity while taking into account your personal preferences.

Actionable step to take to achieve an organized workspace

The key is to overcome the inertia and take action.

Just start. Begin the process without overthinking or getting overwhelmed by the entire task. Take that first step, whether clearing a small area or tackling a specific category of items.

Remember that anywhere is a good starting point. Whether it’s a cluttered desk, a messy drawer, or a disorganized shelf, taking action in any area will create a positive ripple effect.

Don’t be too rigid. Recognize that decluttering is an ongoing process. As you slowly transform your space, you’ll experience positive changes in your productivity and overall well-being.


  • Starting small when reorganizing builds momentum, overcomes resistance, and cultivates a positive mindset for successful decluttering.
  • Establish criteria for keeping important papers and let go of unnecessary items to streamline your organization process.
  • Prioritize proximity and importance when organizing books and supplies in smaller workspaces to optimize efficiency and create a well-organized environment.
  • Creating an ideal workspace is an ongoing feedback, evaluation, and refinement process, so you’ll always have a productive and personalized environment.
  • Remember, the act of starting is powerful, so just start. It sets the momentum in motion and opens the door to a more productive and enjoyable workspace.


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About guest – Gayle Gruenberg, CPO-CD®, CVPO™


Let’s Get Organized

Gayle is the Chief Executive Organizer of Let’s Get Organized, LLC, based in northern New Jersey, USA. She is a Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization, Certified Virtual Professional Organizer, and an Organizer Coach.

She is the organizing expert with the lifestyle brand Change Your Attitude, Change Your Life, is featured on the Conversations with Joan show on New York’s AM 970 and iHeartRadio, and regularly contributes articles to the brand’s online forum. Gayle speaks and writes about Chronic Disorganization and is frequently featured in international publications and online media.

Gayle is also the author of 2 min-ebooks on organizing, available on Amazon, and the upcoming Get the Big O (Organized, of course)! 7 Steps to Your MOST Satisfying Life. She has several other books in the works. She is also a member of and serial leader in the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO) and the Institute for Challenging Disorganization.

Let’s Get Organized has been consistently voted the #1 Professional Organizing firm in Bergen County, New Jersey.

Podcast | Make Space for Blessings:

Let’s Get Organized!: Quick Organizing Tips for Seasons and Holidays
Let’s Get Organized!: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Chronic Disorganization (CD)

About host – Kathy Svetina

Kathy Svetina is a Fractional CFO for growing small businesses with $10M+ in annual revenue.

Clients hire her when they’re unsure about what’s going on in their finances, are stressed out by making financial decisions, or need to structure their finances to keep up with their growth.

She solves their nagging money mysteries and builds a financial structure with a tailored financial strategy. That way they can grow in a financially healthy and sustainable way.

Kathy is based in Chicago, IL and works with clients all over the US.

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