Marie Kondo Your Desk at Work

Who is the first person that comes to mind when you think about organizing anything in 2019? Marie Kondo, of course! She’s an international sensation and her book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, is a worldwide best-seller. I didn’t read the book, but I have watched her Netflix series and implemented some of her tips. I’m still a long way from putting all my clothes in one pile and deciding what to keep because it brings me joy or thanking items for their services before tossing them into the donation pile. I was, however, inspired to fold everything in my husband’s drawers the Marie Kondo way and it has made a big improvement in his neatness!

No matter your approach, tidying up takes time. With so much focus on work already, it’s hard to think about spending more time at our desks than we have to. But taking the time to regularly organize our desks may make it a more pleasant place to be and could even make us work more efficiently in the long run.

How to Marie Kondo Your Desk:

Marie Kondo’s process for tidying up your office space follows the same process she uses for home organization. First, it’s important to determine what you want your space to feel like and organize accordingly. Next, clear all items off of your desk and divide them into the following groups: books, papers, miscellaneous objects and sentimental items.


You’ll consider each one individually. Hold it in your hand and decide if it’s something to keep. Does it spark joy or support what you need to do to accomplish your job? If so, you can put it in the keep pile. If not, put it in the donate pile, but not before you thank it for its service!

Books should be stored vertically, not horizontally. It’s not only more visually appealing, but you’ll also have an easier time accessing them and returning them to their rightful place once finished.


In an office setting, this can be quite complicated. Some papers may indeed spark joy, while others are simply needed for work. You should consider making digital copies of things that you need to keep long-term. Anything physical you decide to keep should be stored in folders and placed in an aesthetically pleasing box or file organizer. If you have to look at it, it should be pleasing!

Miscellaneous Objects

It’s amazing how much of these items we accumulate, isn’t it? This can also be one of the hardest categories to go through. But again, ask yourself, does it spark joy? How do you feel when you look at it? Just because it was free isn’t a reason to keep it. Ask yourself what the cost of clutter is to your mental health if you really need an extra push to get rid of things. Don’t forget to thank anything you discard.

Sentimental Items

These may have found their way into the previous category. However, it’s best they remain separate. This includes things like cards, dried flowers and pictures.

When putting it all in place again, nothing should be piled up. You want to easily see what you have and where things are. Grouping items together is a great practice. Marie is a big fan of boxes to hold groups of things or to keep similar items together. Investing in some pretty boxes can really make a difference and enhance the visual appeal of your space.

Whether you Marie Kondo your desk with the KonMari method or choose another method of tidying up, it’s critical that you keep your workspace functional and organized. Studies show that our space impacts both our productivity and our mood. Once you’ve done a large-scale clearing out of your desk, maintain your space by going through this process on a regular basis. If you do, your office may just become your favorite place!