How to Declutter Your Office in 3 Easy Steps

I recently started to clean our spare bedroom and closet (to make room for our baby!), and what do you think I found? 

OFFICE SUPPLIES! Tons and tons of office supplies taking up ALL of his closet space! 

Document boxes crammed full of markers and notebooks. Shelves full of old planners. Pencil cups galore! Binder clips! Paper clips! “How did this happen and why didn’t I do something about this sooner?” I thought to myself.

Well, two reasons:

One: I couldn’t SEE it (out of sight, out of mind)
Two: I didn’t have a clear inventory of what I needed, so I just bought everything. 22 times. 

Step 1 | Make a Plan

What do I mostly use my office for?
-Blogging: Requires a computer and chargers
-Planning: Requires a planner, 3 Tombow pens, stamps/ink pads, washi tape
-Reading: Requires books, and a Flair pen for taking notes
-Writing: Requires 3 Tombow pens, thank you notes/stationary, notebooks
-Printing: Requires a printer, backup ink, printer paper
What about the décor?
-Chairs & table for blogging & reading
-Desk and chalkboard for planning & writing
-Storage shelf for printing
-Lamps on table and desk for reading and writing
Ok. So now that I knew what I DID need, I could start to get rid of what I didn’t need. And, y’all, there was a LOT I didn’t need!
I found binder clips, paper clips, colored pencils, old planners, planners that had never been used, pencil cups, markers, old schoolwork from my kids, old brochures I’d created for parents, list upon list upon list (maybe I’ll make a list notebook? I thought, jokingly). Speaking of notebooks, I found those, too!

Step 2 | Purge the Space

I got tough and said goodbye to it all (okay, fine. I did create that list notebook). I took the colored pencils, paper clips, binder clips, markers, and other still-usable school supplies to my classroom.
Then, I kept using my newly discovered toughness to purge the items that weren’t my very favorite to use! I had Flair pens in every color, but I only kept the black ones. I had books galore, but I only kept the ones I wanted to read/reread. My old planners and journals got to stay out of sentimental value (I like reading back through them to see how much my life has changed over the years)!

This is what I kept:
2 Flair pens, 2 pencils, 1 sharpie, 3 Tombow Brush pens, 3 rolls of Washi tape, 3 ink pads, and 1 stapler!

This is what I got rid of.
Let’s call it this mother’s second sacrifice (9 wine-less months is clearly number one).

Step 3 | Start Fresh

After the second round of purging, I was ready to redecorate the space! I moved out every single item! First, I replaced the furniture:
-Reading area: rug, two chairs, table
-Work area: desk, chair, drawers
I added the Helmer drawer unit from IKEA (which my husband so cheerfully built). Then I found a home for every single office supply I deemed worthy of staying; The books, the markers, the pens… Everything now has a REAL home!

Now the office is clean and functional and organized!

I know where things are and I can get to them when I need them! And I have a new office supply rule: If it ain’t on my list, it ain’t comin’ in! 🙂

Have you recently cleaned out a space that was worse than you thought? How did you do it? Any tips on how to keep a space efficient and clutter-free? Share your organization tips below! 

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