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Most of us these days have a laptop computer, and we desire the ability to pick up and move to various locations in order to work effectively. Whether you are working on your ipad while the kids are in soccer or meeting someone at Panera, we want to be able to pick up and go quickly. You might have work and/or home files that mostly stay in one location, yet your computer and other supplies need to be easily accessible to carry along. Here is how to have an (almost totally) portable home office.
How to Have an (Almost Totally) Portable Home Office
There’s nothing more frustrating that setting up to work somewhere away from home and not having everything you need. You carve out several hours of uninterrupted time and then you get there only to find you are without a critical piece of information (for me it’s often something like my password book, and I’m texting my husband or one of my kids, asking them to take a picture of it for me, and I can’t get ahold of them…) Argh, it’s so, so frustrating!
Thinking in advance about what you will need will save you loads of time if you want to create a portable home office.
The other thing that’s important is you that you need a fast way to re-organize when you are done. Otherwise you get home, the kids are pulling on you, you are tired and just want to crash, dinner needs to be made, and you throw everything into a huge pile. You end up with a scattered disorganized mess the time you try to work. Keep a SIMPLE system that will stay organized.
Here is what you need:
- Computer. Unless you are going very old-school, you need a computer or possibly an i-pad with a keyboard. Make sure you bring your charger. I also keep a phone charger in my bag.
- Calendar. I use an Erin Condren calendar (see below) which is my command center and to-do list all rolled into one, so I always have my calendar with me.
- Portable files, 3-Ring Binders, or Clipboard. This is where things get sticky. How much and what to bring? I like using clipboards but they take up a lot of space in a bag. These portable files are handy for on the go. I have 1 folder with To-Do List items that I carry with my calendar, and then I have files for my business and separate files for my home (in my case, my special needs kids) that I can grab depending on what I’m working on that day.
- Bag. I love my Timbuk2 messenger bag which has a space for my laptop plus plenty of room for files, books, papers, and more.
For many of us, gone are the days of a huge computer desk. In years past we had a huge L-shaped computer desk where I worked from home.
A large computer desk stored everything, but this sucker was a beast. I think it took about 10 moving boxes to get everything moved from ours when we came to New York from Colorado.
My Home Office
When we moved to our new home in New York, we were presented with an interesting decor dilemma.
Our front door opens right into the dining room which is also my home office.
How could I make that room appealing, inviting to guests, yet also usable for my home office space?
Come inside for a tour and see how we’ve done it.
If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you know our family is a bit crazy for Timbuk2 messenger bags. The top feature I love is that you can carry a laptop through airport security without taking it out of your bag. They are also great all-around bags for the busy person. My husband has had one for several years and it looks almost new. My daughter, son, and I all have one also.
This is what I’ve found works for how to have an (almost totally) portable home office.
How have you made your home office work for on-the-go life?
Day 5 in Calm the Clutter Series
- Choose the items most important to your on-the-go office. Computer, cords, files, calendar, to-do list.
- Choose a bag for your portable office.
- Plan to re-organize when you come home from working away from your desk, so it’s not all in a big pile.
7 Days to Calm the Clutter
Join our series for 7 days to calm the clutter in your life.
All this week we will talk about how to calm the clutter and stay organized. This series is full of tips, tips, tips!
Who doesn’t love quick tips and tricks? These are great take-aways you can use right away.
Follow along as we go or take it at your own pace.
Find an Organized You.
7 Days to Calm the Clutter.
* Make your home office portable.
* Go paperless -- for newbies!
* Organize for weight loss & fitness
* Daily action steps