Clean Your Desk Before You Go on Vacation

Vacation time is coming up, and you are tying up loose ends before you leave. You are
so excited, for a week away. You may have to participate in a few conference calls,
possibly register for some webinars, that you may watch, or just save the recordings
for when you return. You are clearing your calendar. You set an auto responder to let
emailers know that you won’t be responding to their messages.
Oh, and then there is your desk.

So, why would it be important to clean your desk/office before going on vacation? You
know what it’s like when you procrastinate. Whatever you are not doing, know you
should do, avoiding doing, it’s there, in your thoughts, a lot. If you would just do it, and
when you finally do, it’s like, “Why did I wait so long, this wasn’t that bad.”
Cleaning your desk off, is something like that. And even more.

Going on vacation, hopefully is an enjoyable event. It’s a change up of your daily
routine. It’s doing what you want, when you want, and where you want to go. Even,
if it’s a staycation. You know, the week off from work/job, staying at home. It’s down
time. It feels so great to have that break in routine, and a fresh start when you come

Fresh start. Not left over, half completed “To Do” items. I’m not saying that all your
projects are completed. You may be in the middle of a few. It’s just that you don’t want
to have procrastinated on some items, and still have those hanging over your head
while you are on vacation.

You want to enjoy yourself unencumbered.
You also want to return feeling ready to work, again. You don’t want to feel like you are playing catch

So, the desk being clean prior to leaving, allows you to have that, “I’m ready to return
to working,”
feeling, when you return. No leftovers, no, “Ugh, I still need to do . . .” It
allows for the fresh start. Besides, if you work in an office, if someone needs something
while you are gone, they are more likely to find it, in a neat and tidy work space. It will
reflect on you well.

I’ve been doing a significant amount of traveling over the past two years. I’m loving it.
Sometimes, I take the necessary time to clean my desk, prior to leaving. Sometimes,
not so much. Even though most of my travel involves work, coming back to a
disarrayed desk is not fun. Yes, there are a ton of items to take care of prior to leaving.
Schedules to coordinate, details like plants being watered, and just making sure that
I have the items I need to wear back from the dry cleaner, can make me more than
a little frayed. I know this.

When I MAKE the time to clean my desk and office, I feel
energized and ready to work when I walk into my office, upon my return. Every time.

Not just some of the time. So, imagine how great it is, when I return from vacation.
Even better. I’m not that different than you. Clean and organized helps the brain feel
less stress. There is science to back this, too. Princeton University Neuroscience
Institute conducted a study on this:


Yes, that is a picture of my desk, prior to leaving on vacation. Looks good, right? Being
a creative, my desk doesn’t always look like that. I do love it, when it does.

Strength: Making the time to clean off your desk/office, and putting an end to procrastination.
Dignity: Taking full responsibility for action, or lack of it.
Grace: If these aren’t habits you have developed, forgive yourself, and move forward
with no guilt, and a commitment to change.

I’d love to hear if you currently clean off your desk prior to a vacation, or if you are going
to start, the habit. Give me some love, and share below, please.

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