Keep the following pointers in mind as you lay out your office:
In a home office, it’s not necessary to make your desk face out or face the door unless clients come to your home. I have mine against the wall because it makes my office feel more open.
If possible, don’t put your computer in front of a window. The glare will be hard on your eyes. Make sure your computer screen is either facing a wall without a window or at a right angle to a window, instead of in front of it, for better viewing. If you have to place your computer before a window, make sure you have curtains or blinds to block the outside light while you’re looking at your monitor.
Don’t put your fax machine in a location where incoming documents might get lost. I have one client who was unaware that fax transmissions were piling up behind her filing cabinet!
Don’t forget to allow space for opening filing cabinet drawers-about an additional twenty-four inches for a vertical filing cabinet or one foot for a lateral filing cabinet. The cabinet itself may fit in a convenient space next to your shelves, but it’s useless if you can’t open the drawers all the way.
If you have a hideaway bed in your office, make sure you leave enough room in front of it to open and close it easily, especially if you use it often. This way you’ll cause less disruption to your office when you need to use the bed.
Don’t try to organize everything in one day. It took awhile to get to the level of disorganization you now encounter. If you try to do everything at once, there’s a high risk of getting discouraged and giving up altogether. Break the job down into manageable chunks and tackle one thing at a time. Make a list of everything you’d like to accomplish, and reward yourself for each task completed. Scheduling several interruption-free afternoons is usually a more successful approach than trying to organize your entire business life in a day.