Is Your Messy Desk a Sign of Creativity?
My desk is pretty messy much of the time. I will clean it up every few weeks. What will happen is I'll get to a point where the piles of papers and various items on my desk start to distract me. Stress me out a little bit. And I'll take a couple of hours and file everything where it needs to be. And I'll have a clean desk for maybe a week. The good news about a messy desk. It's a sign of creativity.
A study published in the Association for Psychological Science says a messy desk promotes creative thinking and stimulating new ideas. Psychologist Kathleen Vohs says: “Disorderly environments seem to inspire breaking free of tradition, which can produce fresh insights. Orderly environments, in contrast, encourage convention and playing it safe.”
This makes sense to me as I've always been more of a creative type than an administrator. That's why I got into radio. I wanted to be the guy that writes the stuff for the big voice you hear that occasionally says funny things. I wanted to be the person that comes up with fun promotions, silly contests, and makes the radio station you listen to your favorite.
One thing they don't tell creative people in creative jobs, at least in my line of work: There's lots of non creative administrative aspects to the job. So how do I get through it? I look at it as the toll, or the penalty, for having fun at work. To do the creative, you have to do the administrative. And I get that. Some of the administrative stuff is important too. It also contributes to my messy desk.
One more way I get through the administrative stuff. I, like many others, like seeing a majority of my "to-do" list crossed out every evening before I leave the office. I feel good looking at everything I accomplished throughout the day. And that good feeling comes from seeing the task completed. Doesn't matter if it's creative or administrative.
Do you agree, is your messy desk a sign of creativity? Or just all the work you have to do?