Our Work is Our Play!
Estimated Amount of Time You Can Save from this Article:
7 – 13 hours per year: Searching for Cords
90 – 121 hours per year: Searching for Papers
About 97 – 154 hours per year extra to do with whatever you want!
This week’s addition of “Sleep Deprived?” will be discussing about how to make your work area, the average college dorm’s desk area, more efficient. As you know the little things add up after a while and this is what we’ll be looking at this week. The little things you don’t give a second thought about can make the difference between studying that extra hour with more focus or taking NoDoz® trying desperately to stay awake cramming the night before your exam. This week we will just be going over 2 major areas that suck a lot of time up around your desk.
Cords. You know you have them, they’re waiting patiently under your desk, waiting for you to relax your legs . . . and BAM! You and chair are immobilized and intertwined with them! Startled you yank your feet away and you hear the soft noise of your electronics powering down. You just yanked them out of the wall. Now you have to get down on the ground and plug them all back in again. This whole ordeal just sucked up 30 – 45 seconds of your life. It doesn’t sound like much but after this happens a couple times a week it adds up quickly. You could waste up to 65 hours in your lifetime just plunging cords back into the wall!
So here are some simple tips that can make cords more organized, and less likely to be ripped out of the wall.
Tip 1# Tape – If you have hard wood floors try taping the cords that are less likely to be unplugged down to the floor with packaging tape while the cords are taut. The tape will be clear and less visible to the eye unlike the alternative duct tape. But if you have appliances like laptop computer cords or phone chargers would be a wise decision not to tape them down with the others.
Tip #2 Power Strips – They work wonders on multiple plugged in appliances. Usually most power cords or extension cords have 3 or more different outlets on them. But be careful! Do NOT use a power strip on another power strip! You could easily blow a fuse or start an electrical fire from the amount of electricity the cord would be drawing. Also remember while using these types of appliances some are SURGE protected and some are NOT. So if you have an expensive electronic make sure you keep it on a surge protected power strip in case of dangerous voltage that could harm your machine.
Tip #3 Bread Clips – When using a power strip you may find it confusing as to which cord goes to which appliance, and that’s where these little babies come in! Those useless little plastic squares you could never get back on to the bread bag again finally have a use you can use them for! Labels! Write what ever that specific cord goes to, like “TV”, “Computer”, or “Monitor” and attach them to the cord. It will be difficult for them to be knocked off, so your foot traffic shouldn’t be an issue with these babies. Plus they come in a variety of colorful shades. In a bakery they are actually placed on the bread loaves to indicate to the bakers what day the bread was made on so they can throw out the loaf in a timely manner when its time comes. So just head down to your local baker and ask if you can get some different colored bread clips. They may charge you a small fee for them but it is well worth it.
Papers. Even in modern times like this we are still given/use (conservatively) 4 sheets of paper each day. Now lets say for arguments sake that you aren’t given any papers on the weekends or during the summer and winter breaks and you clear out the amount of papers each semester. That makes 80 days you use 4 sheets each day; that’s 320 SHEETS of paper you are given/use each semester! That is a LOT of paper to keep up with!
So let’s organize it!
Tip #1 Go Accordion – It may sound incredibly cliché and over-used, but this product actually works! It is an easy, simple, and compact way to organize your papers quickly without any hassle. They come in a variety of colors, styles, brands, and materials. Their sizes can vary from the enormous 20-something pockets to the small 4 or 5 pocket folders.
Tip #2 Desk Tray – This simple device makes it easy to sort out the many different papers from your classes. They are fairly sturdy and difficult to break if you buy a nice brand, and by putting a label on each of the trays your new papers automatically have a new home they will be snug in for years to come.
Tip #3 Wall Organizer – My personal favorite: the wall organizer! This easy and clean-designed wall ornament is ideal for that splash of individuality each dorm room craves. It is fairly easy to make with the right equipment. First you can get a used window shutter door (make sure there isn’t rot on it), sand the wood down, paint what ever color you prefer over the freshly sanded surface, and let dry. Once dry get a piece of particle board (1/4″ will work just fine), use wood glue to apply the particle board to the shutter, and then clamp them together. Allow them to stay together for a couple days before putting stress on the bonds. Now that they are firmly attached to each other, screw in two Saw Tooth hooks about 2 inches from the top of the shutter and use the 7lbs 3M hooks to hold it to your walls without damaging the wall.
I hope this helped you get inspired to organize your desk and save some valuable time for the future.
Don’t forget to check back next Thursday October 25th, 2012 for our issue on “Studying Habits”!