National Clear Off Your Desk Day

Jan 1, 2016

Xianna Michaels Flower Mandala

January 11th is apparently National Clear Off Your Desk Day. Who knew?

When I think about desk-clearing, I immediately think of the creative process, and how idiosyncratic it is for each individual. I know people who cannot stand a clear, empty desk. It’s as if they find it too sterile, that it somehow paralyzes their thought processes. I’ve known other very creative types who need to see everything in front of them. Their work surfaces may look disorganized to outsiders, but they know exactly where everything is and what needs to be done. Woe betide the misguided organizer who dares lay a hand on the piles!

And then there are those, like me, who love to start the day with a clear work surface. Whether I am writing or doing artwork, the early morning hours are the most important for my creative process. I must walk into a serene study, light my candle, put on soft meditative music, and begin working. G-d willing, if I am productive, I will fill the desk and every available surface in my tiny study with words and drawings before the day is done. And then I will scan, send, file, sort and put it all away in my armoire before calling it a night. The next morning it all comes out again, but for me the ritual is soothing and helps draw me back into my creative realm.

As I said, everyone works differently. But context also matters. Ask me about how I organize my shoes. Ah well, that’s another story entirely, and I’ve needed my youngest granddaughters to help me! Stay tuned…