KonMari in the Workplace: Office Organization Ideas

Thanks to Marie Kondo and her Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, decluttering has become something of a competitive sport. People are decluttering their bedrooms, their closets, their kitchens – even garages and mental spaces. When it comes to your office, organization ideas are in abundance.

But what is the KonMari method, and why is it so different than traditional organizational methods?

Well, first and foremost, it’s not so much an organizational method as it is a way of life – a tidy, less-is-more way of life. Instead of emphasizing organization through storage and putting things away, Marie Kondo advocates simply downsizing.


 " To truly cherish the things that are important to you, you must first discard those that have outlived their purpose. To throw away what you no longer need is neither wasteful nor shameful."


Here are some ways you can apply the life-changing magic of tidying up to your office space – even if your workplace necessities don’t exactly spark joy.


Tidy your space all at once

Before diving into decluttering, make sure you’ve set aside a block of time so you can declutter from start to finish.

According to Marie Kondo, it’s better to tidy your space up in one fell swoop instead of splitting it up into a slew of tasks. She insists tidying should be a “special event,” something you do once and then maintain over time. It is a change in the way you act in your office space – you create a new, clutter-free system and adhere to it.

“Tidy a little a day and you’ll be tidying forever.” – Marie Kondo


Identify what you should keep

Before you can start purging your workspace of clutter, you need to identify what exactly is clutter and what isn’t. For Marie Kondo followers, they are familiar with her hyper-popular method of choosing what to keep and what to discard:

“The best way to choose what to keep and what to throw away is to take each item in one’s hand and ask: “Does this spark joy?” If it does, keep it. If not, dispose of it.”

Of course, this method doesn’t always work well in an office setting, where very few of the things we need ‘spark joy.’ Instead, go by this office-place rule of thumb: if you haven’t used it in the last two weeks, it can either be discarded or stored somewhere less accessible. This will help you keep a neat desk and mind.


Give everything its own space

In this same vein, make sure every item has its own ‘home.’ This will cut down on clutter since things tend to pile up on our desks when they don’t have designated spots.

“The point in deciding specific places to keep things is to designate a spot for every thing.”

Consider storage options like wall file keepers and desktop organizers to create more designated spaces for your daily necessities. But remember – don’t create storage for the sake of keeping things you don’t need! Less is more. Declutter means getting rid of excess, not stowing it away.



Suggested Starting Points for Busting Office Clutter

Paper stack

1. Prioritize Papers

Loose documents are one of the highest points of clutter and stress in office environments. Thankfully, something as simple as starting a filing system – or updating an existing one – can shave away stress and anxiety from your lay out. Tackle the piles of papers on your desk and either shred them, toss them, or file them away.

Pro-Tip: Digitize Your Files

Modern tech makes it possible to keep fewer loose documents than ever before. Digitize what you can using scanners or scanner apps, like Scannable and discard hard copies to reduce clutter. To take digitization one step further, skip the post-it notes and opt for a note-taking software like Evernote.



2. Clean up cables

There are few things as distracting and disorganized-looking as loose, tangled cables. Clear away the clutter of cables with budget-friendly solutions like binder clips or sleeker options like cable management boxes. Whatever you choose, tidying up wads of cables will have you feeling more positive and organized in no time.




2. Pare down pens

Pens are vital for running a business – or office, or classroom – and you never want to be caught without one. However, having toomany pens and pencils can make your desk more cluttered than necessary. Pick a few of your favorite writing tools to keep handy in a pen cup or desktop organizer, then stow the rest away for later use.

Just tidying up your desk will be a good jump-start to a fresher outlook and a more productive you!



 "Success is 90 percent dependent on our mind-set."


For more on making your work place positive and comfortable, check out our Behind the Blue series where we discuss what works for us.

If you have any questions or comments about office organization or the KonMari method in general, reach out to us on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook. And as always, for any questions, concerns, or just to say hello, send an email to larry@bluesummitsupplies.com. Larry would love to hear from you!



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Grace Treutel is Blue Summit Supplies' Director of Culture. Currently she’s in training to become a Marriage & Family Therapist though her greatest love will always be the written word. Her three novel manuscripts have not yet been published - but just you wait. She lives in Huntsville with her  cute kids and cute pets.

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