How I set up my desk to increase my productivity

Like most people in the world, I spend a lot of time at my desk. That means not only do I want it to look good, but I also want it to be a comfortable space and that allows me to work efficiently and productively.

When you spend so much time in one place, you want to make sure you’re going to enjoy it. You want to make sure it works for you. Enough space, a place for all your equipment and room to actually move around are all things you need to think about, because these are key things for preventing procrastination and a lack of motivation for the work you actually need to do.

I shared on Instagram recently that I’ve moved all the furniture around in my bedroom to make sure it’s a space that works well for me. Before, I didn't really have a “working” area. I had a desk, but my bookcase and equipment were all in different parts of the room and it didn't really flow. Now I’ve changed all that, I’ve never been more productive. So here’s how you can set up your desk space to make sure you’re getting your best work done.

#1 | Get a good desk

For me, you can’t go wrong with IKEA. Their range of desks are not only affordable, but clean and modern too. You can get a full desk or you can mix and match with their separate table tops and legs to completely make it your own.

A good thing to think about is how much space you’ve got. You don’t want to get a huge desk when you’ve only got a small space to put it in. You can also think about colour – my desk is white (which is perfect for taking blog photos on too), but sometimes I like covering it with a thin blanket or throw to add a bit of texture.

The final thing to consider is placement – where will it live? It’s best to do this before you move your desk. And you can try out different places too. That’s exactly what I did until I put it where it is now. It used to be at one end of my bedroom under my window where my back would be to the door. But I’ve now flipped it round so it’s facing a wall and I’m sat side onto the door.

A good desk is key to increasing your productivity. You want one that’s durable, has enough space and looks pretty too – these are things that will definitely help you get your work done.

#2 | Pick a comfortable chair

If you’re fidgeting around all day because you’re uncomfortable, it won’t help your productivity. I’ve been in jobs where I’ve had bad chairs to sit on and it really does affect how you complete your work.

I’d advise against a big comfy computer-esque style chair – simple is more effective. I swear by cushions. My chair is a simple white wooden one, and I’ve added a seat cushion and sometimes I’ll sit with one behind my back too. It’s always fun visiting places and trying different ones out too. One on wheels is next on my list!

#3 | Have a place for all your items

Your desk isn’t meant for storage – it’s meant for work. This is a big mistake I used to make. Everything went on my desk. Everything. Papers, letters. You name it, it went on there. But it’s so much more productive when you know where everything is. For the things you use on a daily basis, find suitable storage solutions for them. It’ll make your life so much easier and less cluttered too. The only things I keep on my desk now at all times are a Yankee candle, my iPad and wireless keyboard (which I can swap with my laptop), my bullet journal, and a small Mr Tickle toy. Everything that you feel gets in the way when you’re working, just take off your desk and put it away until you need it.

#4 | Make sure everything is within reach

This was a game changer for me, and one of the main reasons I rearranged my bedroom. Before, I’d have to get up and wander round various parts of my room to find what I was looking for. Now, my desk is next to my big bookcase which stores everything. So when I need something, I just move over to that storage – which is why I want a chair with wheels ;)

We all use things on a daily basis that don’t need to be on show all the time, but you still want to make sure you’ve got easy access to them. Having everything close by saves times and keeps you more efficient too.

#5 | Don’t face a window

Some of you might prefer facing a window while you work and that’s fine – this is just personal opinion. The more I think about it, the more I found it really distracting.  People watching, cars going past, my cat fooling around – I could sit for a few minutes daydreaming and wonder where the time went.

Plus, I really like the idea of having a motivational gallery wall above my desk. Seeing people’s desks is something I’ll never get bored of and their gallery walls are a constant source of inspiration.

How I set up my desk to increase my productivity

#6 | Own your space

You’ve got to do what works for you. If you prefer having everything on your desk, go for it. But if clutter messes up your mind, then minimal is the way to go. Add plants, fairy lights, posters, anything you want. The beauty of it is that it’s your space and you can make it your own. Create a comfortable, inspiring workspace, and you’ll see a huge difference in your happiness, motivation and productivity.

#7 | Get a desk lamp

The brighter your room, the more productive you’ll be. Simple. So a desk lamp is a must-have. You’ve got to be careful when picking one though, as some of them can be a lot duller than you think. It’s all about getting a good set of bulbs too. I like the idea of having a lamp with a wider base, as they can be great for storing other items too, like your needy lip balm.

#8 | Invest in a good candle

I’m only just starting to see how pricey candle addictions can be – but you’ve just got to hunt for a bargain! I’ve had my Yankee candle for a while now and it’s still got a good way to go. Filling your room with a delicious scent really does help with your productivity. You’ll start to associate that smell with your working area and want to be there more often, which means you’ll get more work done. Plus, it helps to add a bit of cosiness to your space.

#9 | Keep a window open

I find that the warmer I am, the more lethargic I feel. So something really important when you’re working in your office environment is to keep a window open. Yep, even in Winter. You can wrap up and let the fresh air in. It’ll help every part of your body and definitely increase your productivity.


One of the most important things to remember is to make it personal to you. Feel free to take inspiration, but remember that it’s your space and it’s got to be productive for you.


How do you keep productive in your workspace? Do you have any styling tips?

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Holly SuttonComment