Desk setups that maximize productivity: Part 2

If your job requires you to sit at a desk, you probably spend more waking hours at that desk each day than you do in your own home (or in any other part of your home, if that’s where you work from). If you love your job, this may not seem like such a bad thing, but it’s still worth maximizing your small space for ultimate productivity. Check out this Part 1 of our desk setup series to get you inspired!

Home office setup by Naufal Zuhdi

Michael Soledad shares his desk setup for productivity 

Sneaker Dreams by Edmonton Photographer and Justin Tse 

Pegboard office setup by Tomek Koszyk


Classy workspace that utilizes its surroundings by thedesigner2011 

Shared workspace goals by Valezrina

Travel Bloggers setup by Sam Ciurdar 

Editor’s setup found via Artlist 

Walking Workspace found via iSetups

Minimal dark grey setup by Nikolay of Beauty of Technology 

Gaming Room setup found via Desktop Wars 

Vertical screens rule this desk setup by Milad Atefi

Gadgets and products designed to organize your workspace and amplify productivity

With work-life balance literally hanging in the balance of our daily life, productivity is the key to attaining your work goals. Research from Warwick University indicates that people are more productive when they’re happy, specifically, 12% more productive. So it seems logical that we should devote some time to making our workspace work for us! How do we do that? Some simple tips are to be organized, clean and utilize gadgets (say noise-canceling headphones) to optimize the space around you, which is exactly what our curated collection of products aim to achieve. So go ahead and optimize your space and maximize your productivity!

The Retro Compact Keyboard by Azio Corp 

4WCDB Charging Drawer by Rev-A-Shelf

The EXOvault Mouse by Jonathan Schipper & EXOvault 

Levimoon is a levitating moon-like orb that can float, rotate, and even light up in mid-air by Coocepts 

The MX Vertical mouse tilts at an angle of 57° off the horizontal plane that is your table, feeling halfway between a mouse and a joystick by Logitech 

The DuoFlip opens in two ways, one like a traditional laptop with a backward hinge, and another, like a book with a hinge on the side by Compal Electronics 

The Intel Honeycomb Glacier is Intel’s vision for the direction for gaming laptops of the future. It features not one, but two hinges, and not one, but two displays 

The Desk Collection by Grovemade 

The Clamp Basket by Seungwan Kang & Seonhee Shin of Kyungnam College of Information & Technology 

NIOXSMN, a conceptual device that ingeniously combines three essential desk-top items, the desk light, multi-socket, and phone charger, into one sleek and space-saving product by Engyang Zhu

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Desk Setups that maximize Productivity

If your job requires you to sit at a desk, you probably spend more waking hours at that desk each day than you do in your own home (or in any other part of your home, if that’s where you work from). If you love your job, this may not seem like such a bad thing, but it’s still worth maximizing your small space for ultimate productivity.

We asked design and productivity experts for advice on how best to structure, organize, and decorate your desk to create a workspace that serves you, keeps you on task, and makes you feel good about what you’re doing.

Focus on Functionality

Keep it simple and functional with items you use all the time. My desktop must-haves include a stapler; a jar of pens, pencils, and highlighters; a candle; and, most important, my planners. My life is in my day planner, so having that right next to me as I work ensures that I stay on task and plan accordingly when responding to emails. It also has all my important to-dos and papers right inside.

Meghan Meredith, life coach and home organizer; Atlanta, Georgia

Practice Minimalism

Having a clear space helps you avoid decision fatigue. If you have a lot of clutter on your desk, it creates a lot of stimuli for your brain to constantly react and respond to. Likewise, if you have a lot of stuff in your space that you have to move and shift around, you’ll likely feel flustered and spend more time finding the things you need. Be intentional and selective about what goes where. If you have a lot of decor you love, consider switching it out weekly instead of trying to fit it all on your desk at once.

Sarah Steckler, productivity expert

Organize Based On How You Work and Think

The way you set up your desk should depend on your job and mirror the flow of your thoughts and materials. If you’re a linear thinker or someone who works based on task categories (prospecting, invoicing, brainstorming), you might prefer to separate papers and other items based on type. If you’re a web thinker or work based on clients or projects, organize your desk that way, with a cubby or file assigned to each of those clients or projects. It all depends — do you want to focus on the process or the project? Adjust your workspace accordingly.

Stever Robbins, executive coach and host of the Get-It-Done Guy podcast; Cambridge, Massachusetts

Bring your Values to the Forefront

Something I’ve always found helpful and have suggested to plenty of clients throughout my years is to put a reminder of your values front and center, whether that’s with a Post-it Note, a printout, or a computer screen background. That way, when you’re feeling overwhelmed and need to decide what to tackle next, you can use those values to help you decide what to do. For instance, if you value flexibility and haven’t had much lately, it might be time to reprioritize a bit so you remember to honor what matters to you. It’s really easy to get swept up in work and spend time on less important things.

Kelly Poulson, life and career coach; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Use Multiple Screens to Keep you on Track

One thing I find that provides a significant advantage is the use of double monitors or very large screens. With the increasing demand to work in multiple applications simultaneously, having dual monitors allows that to happen and helps increase workflow efficiency by making data sharing between applications a breeze.

Tristan Layfield, career coach; Detroit, Michigan

Add Green

Studies have proven that plants enhance how we feel in our interior environments. Some research suggests that being near plants can reduce stress, minimize anger, and contribute to well-being.

Amanda Amato, interior designer; Pompton Lakes, New Jersey

Adapt a “Desktop Zero” Habit

Clutter isn’t evil during a project, but it certainly isn’t necessary all the time. That’s why I adopted the practice of “desktop zero,” just like inbox zero for email: At the end of a task or project, I clear my desk of everything I don’t need sitting out. This keeps my desk clean most of the time but allows me to be super messy when I’m deep in the middle of something important.

Jeff Sanders, author of The Free-Time Formula and The 5 A.M. Miracle; Nashville, Tennessee

Put your Goals in Plain Sight

Your workspace should hold you accountable and inspire you. I love to have my yearly vision board right above my desk, as well as specific 30-, 60-, and 90-day goals posted on the wall for my life and business. I also like to have positive affirmations, inspirational quotes, photographs, and fun banners.

Danise Sumner, owner of Busy Bee Productivity Coaching; Richmond, Virginia

Display Feel-good Photos

Bringing nonwork elements into your workplace through photos can help serve as a reminder that life is about more than work. And if you have photos on your wall from an experience — be it a trip to a beautiful national park or that roller coaster you went on with your childhood best friend — you are decorating your space with memories that spark joy. When your mood is better, you’re bound to have a more positive outlook.

Abby Wolfe, career coach; Portland, Maine


The original write up by Alli Hoff Kosikhere on Medium.

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