My Dirty Little Office Secret — My name is Kristen King, and I am a piler. (I’m also a stuff-it-where-I-can’t-see-it-er, but that’s another post.) Back in 2008, I posted about this um, piling quirk of mine on the now-defunct Biz Chicks Rule, where I confessed to having a “File Box of Doom” that I moved around my office but never really addressed. Over that summer I worked through the doom and ended up eliminating it entirely. But now the pile is back, and bigger than ever.

Ladies and gentlemen, meet the Chair of Misfit Papers and Office Supplies.

If you look closely, you can see about a week’s worth of newspapers mixed in with papers I need to file, half a dozen project notebooks, several unopened packages of pretty file folders, my day planner (clearly getting a lot of use!), an ethernet cable, and my iPhone earbuds. Buried in the wreckage of my office is also a pair of scissors, a digital camera, and a couple dozen expired coupons, as well as some I hope to unearth before the use-by date passes.

I’m setting my timer for 15 minutes and I’m going to do a speed sort to at least get things organized and try to put away a few smaller piles. Once I pull out the newspapers and office supplies, it should be much more manageable. Right? Right?

What’s your dirty little office secret? And what are you going to do about it?

Contents Copyright © 2006-2014 Kristen King

16 comments… add one
  • Jason Verhoosky Feb 7, 2011

    I LOVE this!!!

    I must admit…I too am a piler…sometimes a I will stick it in this drawer and get it done after this project-er, and also the dreaded…I will give it its own container, that way it is all together when I never get to it-er.

    About 2 months ago I instituted the: My Desktop Must be free of clutter at the end of the day policy…it helps, but my guest chair is crying a bit.

    I wish you the best of luck, and let me know if you find a solution!

  • Cheryl Smith Feb 7, 2011

    Only a chair of misfit papers and pile? It’s all relative, isn’t it? Good for you for setting your timer to 15 minutes. We can accomplish a lot of decluttering in that amount of time.

  • P.S. Jones Feb 7, 2011

    Your pile of doom terrifies me. I don’t believe I could enter your office as long as it was there. But then again, I have very little room to gloat because if something is out of place, I can’t do anything until it’s fixed. As I have a conference call, that pile would scream at me “Fix me! File me! If you don’t, I’ll ruin EVERYTHING!” I guess my dirty office secret is that I’m crazy enough to hear piles of paper talking to me.

  • Savannah Rose Feb 7, 2011

    I have to admit that I can’t throw anything away when it comes to writing. Scribbled notes (even if they’re converted to the laptop), character sheets (even if I don’t use them), file folders full of inspirational pictures, NOTHING. It’s nice to know I am among friends.

  • John Soares Feb 7, 2011

    Kristen, I really like your idea of taking 15 minutes to attack the pile.

    I just spent a couple of hours over the weekend organizing my office, recycling a lot of paper I didn’t need, making a pile of books to donate, and doing a thorough cleaning. I am definitely more productive when my workspace is neat.

  • Matthew Rathbun Feb 8, 2011

    I’m a de-pillar! I don’t think I’m OCD until I encounter a pile on a desk. I can walk right by a pile of clothes or dishes, but a pile in the workspace weirds me out. I know… Weird,right?

    I’ve actually been caught organizing employees desks at work…

    Good luck with you piles! :)

  • MicroSourcing Feb 10, 2011

    It’s a wide-spread sickness, really, piling stuff up at the office. We have some old, unopened food packages around here.

  • Debra Stang Feb 16, 2011

    Like you, my dirty little office secret is piling. I can stack so much junk in my inbox that some days it seems like it must be a Hogwarts original, but it keeps holding more, bless it. I try to make time to sort through it at least once a week, but I have to admit, it doesn’t always happen.

  • I have a habit of piling a desk full of clutter on one side of my L-shaped desk. I periodically take time to sort it out and usually 15 minutes will do the trick. I had a bad habit of creating a pile on the window seat behind my desk (huge mistake as then I can’t enjoy the window seat), so have tried hard to eliminate that bad habit.

  • SEJWritingServices Mar 1, 2011

    I can certainly relate to the ‘piled up paper’ technique! If it’s in a pile, it’s tidy right?

  • :) you’ve made my day, its a very well stacked pile, you must have really balanced it perfectly. Have you ever thoughts of going into Jenga on a professional basis?

    I dont pile, I hide… i’ve got lots of boxes for dumping. Occasionally when i can’t get anymore in, i’ll file the contents of the dumping box into the main boxes….

  • Custom Logo Design Mar 7, 2011

    It’s a wide-spread sickness, really, piling stuff up at the office. We have some old, unopened food packages around here.

  • Piles are better than heaps ;)

    They are a bit more orderly at least.

  • Customized Fat Loss Jul 13, 2011

    I’m sorry, but that’s not a a lot of pile. As a lawyer, I deal with HUNDREDS of thick folders of cases. The pile you have in that chair is a baby pile compared to mine. And the thing is, I can’t throw them away and they can’t fit into my already full cabinet. So yeah, if I can deal with heaps of papers in my office, you can sort them all out in 15 minutes.

  • Bodybuilding Diets Jul 20, 2011

    I hope your digital camera didn’t fall onto the ground because of the 15 minute timer you set for yourself. I think it’s time you start organizing your things so you can have focus more on work… Right?

Leave a Comment