By Emily Dimytosh PLA Marketing Team Leader
I bet Mr. Clean got excellent grades.
After cleaning my desk this weekend and seeing the difference that it made to my productivity, I can only imagine the GPA Mr. Clean would have brought down in his house.
My desk was a mess. Mail was placed haphazardly on whatever space was free. Loose papers stuffed into textbooks, fiction books, and old editions of Cosmo – anything that was stationery. Eventually, I couldn’t tell what colour my desk was, there was so much stuff on it.
I thought I had the mental strength to avoid these distractions. At 21 years of age, surely a little mail, a dish or two, and some burnt-out highlighters weren’t going to stop me from getting my assignments in on time.
But all the time I was trying to edit, I envisioned my mom over my shoulder nagging me to clean up. I then was distracted thinking about how long you can use a highlighter for before it runs out. Do you measure it in hours of use? Cm’s of ink? Brightness of colour? And mail….did I pay my last hydro bill?
Enough was enough. I couldn’t take it anymore. I caved to the cleanliness committee and started making an area for myself. But this time, I also created a system.
I made one file folder for mail, one for each class, and one for other documents that “SHOULD NOT BE THROWN OUT.”
Now, when I’m in a hurry, I find the folder, slip whatever it is into it, and deal with it later. No more desk real estate taken up than absolutely necessary. I’ve got a bucket for usable pens and bucket for burnt-out ones (aka, the garbage pail). Most importantly, when I need to focus, I can pick up all the folders and my pens off the desk in about 20 seconds to make it easier to focus. Suddenly, the only thing I had to worry about was what to write in my essay. A ‘lemony-fresh’ change for sure!