Wellness

8 Things Happy, Productive People DON’T Have on Their Desks

Written by
Stephanie Lysaght
PHOTOGRAPHS BY
David Tsay for Parachute

It’s back to school time – but why should your kids have all of the office-supply fun? They don’t even have offices. So use this time of year to give your desk the upgrade it deserves. Here are eight easy ways to edit your workspace so its as simple, fun and inspiring as possible.

01

Every Pen You’ve Amassed Since Birth

If your favorite pen is “the only one that hasn’t exploded yet,” it’s time for a change. Dip on over to the office supply closet and snag some new writing utensils. Or head to Muji and grab a box of your favorites. There’s nothing like a new box of decent pens to make you feel like a boss. 

01

Every Pen You’ve Amassed Since Birth

If your favorite pen is “the only one that hasn’t exploded yet,” it’s time for a change. Dip on over to the office supply closet and snag some new writing utensils. Or head to Muji and grab a box of your favorites. There’s nothing like a new box of decent pens to make you feel like a boss. 

02

The Smithsonian of Office Supplies

You are a grown-ass person. So why do you use scissors that can barely cut Play Doh, that you inherited from the person who had your desk before you, who died? Make sure your basics are in fighting shape – stapler, scissors, hole punch, etc. – but don’t blame us if everyone in the office descends on your new setup.

02

The Smithsonian of Office Supplies

You are a grown-ass person. So why do you use scissors that can barely cut Play Doh, that you inherited from the person who had your desk before you, who died? Make sure your basics are in fighting shape – stapler, scissors, hole punch, etc. – but don’t blame us if everyone in the office descends on your new setup.

03

Ho-Hum Decor

This back-to-school year, when you are restocking the above, indulge in at least one item that just makes you smile. Hang our minimalist, modern Wall Art by Ethan Caflisch beside your desk. Or get the elegant MoMA HAY Phi Scissors; the gold-plated carbon Italian pair tells the world, I take my job, or at least my scissors, very seriously.

03

Ho-Hum Decor

This back-to-school year, when you are restocking the above, indulge in at least one item that just makes you smile. Hang our minimalist, modern Wall Art by Ethan Caflisch beside your desk. Or get the elegant MoMA HAY Phi Scissors; the gold-plated carbon Italian pair tells the world, I take my job, or at least my scissors, very seriously.

04

Bad Habits

Tell me what you do when that 3:00pm slump hits, and I’ll tell you who you are. For those inevitable moments when willpower is low, outfit yourself for success by removing anything you’d rather not do from your desk. If crummy snacks are your Achilles’ heel, stock your desk with healthy ones. If online shopping if your kryptonite, block your retailer of (lack of) choice and read an e-book. 

04

Bad Habits

Tell me what you do when that 3:00pm slump hits, and I’ll tell you who you are. For those inevitable moments when willpower is low, outfit yourself for success by removing anything you’d rather not do from your desk. If crummy snacks are your Achilles’ heel, stock your desk with healthy ones. If online shopping if your kryptonite, block your retailer of (lack of) choice and read an e-book. 

05

An Addictive Favorites Bar

So, we’re on your computer now. And everything in your Favorites Bar is popcorn-grade. If you are spending more time than you want to in a black hole of distraction, you’ll be shocked at what removing certain sites from your favorites toolbar will do for your sanity and time management. Removing the visual cue to click will short-circuit your unpleasant, unconscious habit and go a long way toward changing it.

05

An Addictive Favorites Bar

So, we’re on your computer now. And everything in your Favorites Bar is popcorn-grade. If you are spending more time than you want to in a black hole of distraction, you’ll be shocked at what removing certain sites from your favorites toolbar will do for your sanity and time management. Removing the visual cue to click will short-circuit your unpleasant, unconscious habit and go a long way toward changing it.

06

Stuffy Air

If your office is like most, the windows are generally closed, with air-conditioning or heat cranking, as the season dictates. Trouble is, all of that recycled air is also recycling that cough everyone has had all week. So treat yourself to an air-purifying plant, like the all-but-impossible to kill snake plant, aka Mother-in-Law’s-Tongue.

06

Stuffy Air

If your office is like most, the windows are generally closed, with air-conditioning or heat cranking, as the season dictates. Trouble is, all of that recycled air is also recycling that cough everyone has had all week. So treat yourself to an air-purifying plant, like the all-but-impossible to kill snake plant, aka Mother-in-Law’s-Tongue.

07

A Smartphone

I know. That should have been number one, right? But just turn it off and stick it in your drawer. Then, make any necessary adjustments. For example, if you depend on your phone’s clock feature, get a real clock, like the Tait Desktop Clock. Replace anything that makes you reach for your phone with the analog version, and reclaim hours of your day. Because checking the time leads to checking a text which leads to checking on your ex…

07

A Smartphone

I know. That should have been number one, right? But just turn it off and stick it in your drawer. Then, make any necessary adjustments. For example, if you depend on your phone’s clock feature, get a real clock, like the Tait Desktop Clock. Replace anything that makes you reach for your phone with the analog version, and reclaim hours of your day. Because checking the time leads to checking a text which leads to checking on your ex…

08

A Subpar Desk Chair

There comes a time in every working person’s life when the-chair-that-came-with-the-job just isn’t cutting it anymore. So if you’re feeling sore and crunched, up your ergonomic game with a seat that really supports you. The Aeron Chair remains the gold standard. But the most important thing is that your chair really fits your body and supports proper alignment.

08

A Subpar Desk Chair

There comes a time in every working person’s life when the-chair-that-came-with-the-job just isn’t cutting it anymore. So if you’re feeling sore and crunched, up your ergonomic game with a seat that really supports you. The Aeron Chair remains the gold standard. But the most important thing is that your chair really fits your body and supports proper alignment.