From Chaos to Zen: Harmonize Your Workspace + Your Work Style

Don’t let your furniture dictate your work style, configure your space to the way YOU like to work!

I recently had a client who needed help organizing her studio apartment. She said, "I have been living in a studio for a year and was having an incredibly hard time being productive in my space. I was wholly uninspired and affected by my environment. I loved the potential of my apartment and didn't want to move, but needed the space to work for me."

In particular, as a busy health care practitioner, she wanted a place to sit and do her charting and other paperwork. She had a nook with a desk and some shelves—all the trappings of a productive work space, right? Well, wrong—for her, anyway.

Creative and visual, she needs to see everything she’s working on and likes a lot of room to spread out. Moreover, she prefers to sit on the floor and work at her coffee table, not in a chair or at a desk. "My desk was as a paper holder," she reported. "I've always felt more comfortable working on the floor." Yet, she felt like she was supposed to sit at a desk to do work, because that’s what people do. But for her, chair + desk + work = UNPRODUCTIVE + CLUTTER + ANXIETY BECAUSE WORK ISN’T GETTING DONE.

Obviously, in a studio apartment, space is at a premium, so you want to make sure every last item is some combination of functional, beautiful, and/or you love it. If your desk is going unused and/or is a repository for random crap, I say get rid of it! Instead, configure your workspace to a spatial flow you will actually use and feel inspired by.

Note the "L" shape of the two Expedits together.

Note the "L" shape of the two Expedits together.

And so we did: Among other organizational-y things, we put two 2-cubby-by-4-cubby Expedit shelves together to form an “L” shape around where her coffee table sits (AKA her “desk”) (bonus: one of the shelves serves as a room divider). Each of the cubbies houses something germane to her work—reference books, patient files, etc. We also got some “drawers” (organizer boxes that fix oh-so-perfectly in those cubbies) to house her office supplies. Now she can sit on a comfy cushion at her coffee table and do her work, while having everything she needs literally at her fingertips. When she is finished, she can easily put those items back where they live, and use the coffee table as a coffee table once again.

And in the end? My client says: "Amelia transformed my concept of a work space! I find myself having more energy. This is the power of a functional, useful, and beautiful place."