Finally, an excuse for a messy desk

clean house, wasted life

Over the weekend, I came across the story, “What a Messy Desk Says about You” in the Sunday New York Times. The article describes how working in a messier environment leads to greater creativity, at least, in the research reported. Honestly, this seemed a bit obvious. Aren’t designers and decorators known for keeping messy inspiration boards, crammed with photos, textiles, drawings and knick-knacks? Aren’t there coffee mugs featuring Einstein’s famous quote, “If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?”

More curious to me is the creative energy people put into organization and order. Hence, the elaborate and, yes, creative desk organizing projects popping up all over pinterest.  I cannot help but admire some of the energy and fastidiousness that goes into these projects. But, I am not one of those people, at least when it comes to my desk.

I like my messy desk – yarns strewn, three books open at once, scribbled notes on scraps of paper – a desk like an inspiration board, filled with happy accidents, joyful juxtapositions, a riot of color, images and ideas. Yes, I like it just fine… until I can’t find the scribbled list, the piece of mail, the thread (literal or figurative) that I’m looking for. Frustrating, but not frustrating enough to incite me to organize. Now, with a science-based excuse, I expect my desk will remain in a state of chaos.

* image from a poster available on

One thought on “Finally, an excuse for a messy desk

I'd be delighted to hear what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s