If you have a desk or work area, take just a moment and look it over…what do you have on your desk?
If you were sitting here with me, at my desk, you might think my work area was messy. I counted 13 cards, small pictures, and big notes; a working notebook; 2 magazines and 2 newspapers (folded); 8 books in a stack and 22 books in a line on one corner of the desk; 3 or 4 paperweights, including a grip exerciser; an hourglass (running out); a beer mug with pens and a small American flag; a bunch of yellow sticky notes; a TV remote; a glass of water; a roll of toilet paper (I have a cold); a few bills to be paid; and a silver flask from Oxford University.
However, the center of the desk is clear except for my laptop.
And, you need to understand that my desk is BIG. It’s made from a door (unfinished closet door from Home Depot) and two, plastic sawhorses. The whole thing cost less than $100.
I know enough about my work style (I need to keep a lot of things around me for information and inspiration) to know that this is the desk I need.
How do you work best? If you do great work sitting at a table at Starbucks, go for it; if you work best in isolation, close the door or put on headphones; if you need noise and other types of stimulation, look for areas in which you get what you need.
I’m for all the rules about working, but you have to figure out what works best for you…and where you do your best work.