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The best desk organizers to banish clutter

The best desk organizers to banish clutter

When you’re slammed at work, you don’t have time to organize your desk. But have you noticed that staring at your messy desk causes even more stress during an already stressful day?

You’re not alone. According to a recent study, a heavy workload leads to stress and emotional exhaustion. When workers are stressed, they tend to be more indecisive, which causes office clutter to build up. Unfortunately, clutter is another stressor! A perpetuating negative cycle can develop, where stress feeds clutter and clutter feeds stress.

Clutter can also be distracting. If you have a difficult time blocking out distractions (like a huge pile of paper threatening to spill over), you can’t devote as much energy to your work.

Even if you don’t find clutter distracting, it may affect how well others perceive you do your job. According to a University of Michigan study, managers tend to see workers with messy desks as less conscientious, more neurotic, and less agreeable. A messy desk may even cause managers to pass you up for a promotion.

Desk organizers to rein in clutter

Luckily, desk organizers can help tame the mess – and your stress. Any of the following items can help you get a handle on your desktop clutter.

Stackable document trays

Paper is the primary culprit for most people’s desktop disorganization. Memos, bills, printouts, and notes pile up. A stackable document tray allows you to contain the mess and sort your papers into groups. For instance, you may have urgent, mid-term, and long-term stacks that help organize not just your desk, but your priorities.

Desktop carousel

The spinning capability of a desktop carousel allows you to easily access your office supplies with a simple flick of your wrist. In addition to open compartments at the top, many carousels come with hooks, drawers, and other organizational options.

Accessory holder (with or without drawers)

Does carousel spinning make you dizzy? Opt for a desktop accessory organizer that stays put but still organizes your key office accessories. Desk organizers take the stackable document trays to the next level. In addition to paper organization, desk organizers often come with compartments for scissors, pens, and other common office supplies. Some are best for organizing small items, such as paperclips and post-its. Others come with compartments large enough to store your papers and files.

Accessory holders come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Some even come with chargers for your phone and other electronics! When you choose an accessory holder, think about whether you want one with or without drawers. The benefit of choosing one without drawers is that you’ll be able to easily view and access the contents. The benefit of choosing one with drawers is that they hide any potential mess.

The best desk organizers to banish clutter

Mesh desk organizer

Although desk organizers come in a variety of different materials, mesh is a great choice because it’s easy to clean and you can easily see what’s inside.

Drawer organizers

If you like a clean, minimalist look, consider moving your storage solutions off your desktop and into a drawer. Measure your desk drawer first so you know which organizers will fit inside.

Drawer dividers

If you can’t find a drawer organizer that fits your drawer, or if you prefer to organize to your own specifications, invest in drawer dividers. With drawer dividers, you can create compartments to fit your exact needs. Use all your drawer space without wondering what to put where.

Desktop filing system

Using a desktop filing system rather than a filing cabinet allows easy access to your key files. By placing your files in plain view, a desktop filing system also requires you to keep your paperwork organized. Opt for a filing system for your desktop, or one that hangs on a nearby wall.

Magazine holder

Organize your key files at little cost by grouping them by type or priority in magazine holders. Magazine holders are highly portable, and you can store them on your desk, a bookshelf, or the floor. Their portability makes them a great choice for organizing a makeshift home office (for instance, your kitchen table) because you can quickly clear off your temporary workspace at the end of the day.

Monitor stand with drawers

If you’re going to use a monitor stand to lift your computer, why not get double duty out of it? Purchase a monitor stand with drawers or compartments to organize what was previously unusable office space.

Cable clips

Even the most organized desk can look chaotic when cords go every which way. Cable clips keep your cords in order (and they can be really cute too!). Choose a cable clip with an adhesive underside to keep your cords from slipping off your desk.

Pencil cups

The classic office supply has come a long way! From classic cups to containers with built-in chargers, you can find plenty of options to keep your writing utensils nearby.


With so many great accessories for organization, getting your desk into tip-top shape doesn’t have to be a chore. A clean desk can translate into better job performance and less stress.

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