Remember how I previously posted that my desk was miraculously clean?

Yeah, well, it isn’t anymore.

I guess it makes sense that it would be a disaster again, since I wasn’t really sure how it got so clean in the first place.  I’m chalking the previous state of order up to a freak occurrence.  I was thinking maybe it got clean because I had so much less stuff, and maybe that was true for a brief, shining moment, but stopping the flow of paperwork into my life has proved pretty challenging.  I recently opted out of being sent any more credit card offers, but I still get plenty of other paperwork – some of it necessary, and I’m never sure if I need to keep it long term, so to be safe, I just keep creating files and fill up my desk drawers.  I am dreaaaaaddding the day I have to go through all my paperwork in earnest.

I’ve also totally been dreading the thought of cleaning out my top desk drawer.  It is a MESS.  Look:

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Since I joined the professional work force, every time I left a job, I would move the contents of my old work desk to my new work desk.  When I quit working a desk job to be an actor, a lot of that office type stuff found it’s way into my new home office, and I even bought some things I hadn’t previously owned, just because I was used to seeing them on my work desk.  But time has shown that as an actor, I really don’t use a lot of what I’ve kept – the demands of what I do now are very different.  Keeping a lot of random office supplies made me feel I was prepared for anything, but digging through all that crap to find the stuff I truly need is a big time suck that actually hinders my efficiency, and takes up a lot of valuable work space.

So I dumped the whole drawer out the other night and started over.  Rather than doing what I usually do – figure out what to toss and then put all the remaining stuff back in the drawer –  I started by only putting items back in the drawer that I know I currently use, and then scrutinizing everything that was left for what I would toss or keep.  Here are some discoveries I made:

  1. I will never need to buy another memory stick again – probably ever.  By the time I fill up the ones I have, I’m sure technology will have moved on and they will be obsolete.
  2. I have even more lip balm than I thought – in addition to the stash I’ve already noted in a previous entry, I found three more tubes in my desk drawer.  Seriously, my lip are just not that dry – I will never understand why I felt I needed to buy so much.
  3. I have a hard time letting go of my old business cards.  I don’t know why.  Do I think someone will make me PROVE that I worked a previous job, and my tax returns will not be proof enough?  Why do I need to hang on to a whole box of unused cards – all of them, I might add, with addresses that are now obsolete for those businesses.  (I am happy to say I finally recycled them.)
  4. It will probably be a good 5-7 years before I have to buy another pen, sticky note, eraser (one of them I found was from college, no kidding), roll of washi tape, box of staples, paperclips, or tube of hand lotion.  I kept only my favorites and tossed most of the duplicates.
  5. I also have a hard time letting go of keychains, even if they are ones I would probably never actually use.  This goes up exponentially if I got them as a souvenir from a trip.  I got rid of all but one, and if I haven’t put it on my keyring in a year, I’m throwing it away too.

Here’s what it looks like now:

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I kid you not, I have walked into the office at least six times today for the sole purpose of opening my top drawer and admiring it.  Weird?  Yes.  But I am very proud of my progress.

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