We’re only a couple of weeks into the new year now and many people have already gotten their planning systems down and ready to go for the rest of 2018! It’s the perfect time to get organized, whether it be organizing your life events into a planner, organizing that closet that has been overflowing with items for all of 2017, or organizing your desk that you’ve barely sat at because of everything piled on top of it. But I have a question for you: have you considered that it may be time to re-organize the bag your take to work, too? After all, you lug it back and forth from your home to the office (wherever your office may be!) every day, and it stores the most vital items that you need for your work or to function in your work space. It’s time to make sure that you’re filling your tote with your organized work bag essentials for the new year!
If you’ve ever been curious about what’s in my work bag, then look no further because I’m going to go in-depth about everything I keep on me while I’m at work and why it should be included in your own organized work bag essentials list, too!
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Funny, right? Bet you didn’t expect this to be listed here, but in reality, you work bag is in reality one of the most important organized work bag essentials that we could talk about! In it you keep all of your most important work items organized, so you want to make sure that you have one that has the appropriate amount of pockets to keep everything in its place. After all, nothing is worse than having to go digging for your notebooks and pens during an important meeting.
You also want to make sure that the bag provides the appropriate amount of support to your shoulder and back so that you don’t end up with major pain by the end of work week. The straps should be thick in order to evenly distribute the weight that you’re carrying around with you instead of putting pressure on one strip of your skin! I’ve also found that keeping the straps short (i.e. a tote instead of a satchel) helps tremendously with shoulder pain because you can balance the weight of the bag across the back of your arm as you’re walking.
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My organized work bag essentials bag of choice is the Dagne Dover Legend Tote, which I bring to work every day and is without a doubt my absolute favorite bag that I own. It’s large and slightly heavier than I would have liked, but it carries everything in it that I need and matches any outfit that I wear because of its neutral color. The amount of pockets in this bag is insane. I have a dedicated laptop sleeve, separate pockets for my bullet journal, wallet, phone, pens/lipstick, and smaller items like a compact, as well as a water bottle sleeve where I can safely store my water bottle without it tipping over! While it is definitely an investment ($265), I find it to be beyond worth the price because of how often I use it and how sturdy it is!
Yes, yes, this is a given. After all, who would regularly leave home without their wallet on purpose? I’m hoping nobody, but definitely correct me if I’m wrong! Just having your wallet is great, but you also want to make sure that the wallet you choose as one of your organized work bag essentials is multi-functional. Nothing is more frustrating than having to change your wallet to fit into a purse smaller than your work bag one the weekends and then forgetting to switch it back! Or trying to grab just the cards you need as you run to get lunch during a quick break.Making sure your #workbag essentials are multifunctional means that you don't have to constantly change them out to suit your needs, making it easier to pack for work in the mornings! Click To Tweet
After getting my first paycheck from work a few months ago I invested in this beautiful Michael Kors as a way to reward myself for surviving my first week! While the fact that it has room for 16 cards, my phone, and a compartment for change is the main reason I purchased it, what tipped me over the edge was the fact that it had a wrist strap! This way I can leave my big work bag in my locker when I run out to get coffee and only bring my wallet with me. I can also do the same on the weekends when I’m running errands and go completely sans purse!
Since purchasing that wallet, though, I received a beautiful soft-leather Coach wristlet from my boyfriend’s parents for Christmas, and that’s become my go-to for both work and weekends! I love to bright color of mine but if that’s not your style, they have some beautiful color options that are more subdued, too!
Your planning system.
I know what you’re thinking, a planning system? Why not just call it a planner? The answer to that is simple: a lot of people don’t use a normal planner, or they use a normal planner in conjunction with a bullet journal, and so on! The most important thing is that whatever you choose, it works for you on whatever basis you need your planner! This is absolutely one of the organized work bag essentials that you should have on you at all times so that you can always keep track of your dates and tasks!
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For instance, my planning system consists of a Leuchtteurm 1917 Bullet Journal (with pre-numbered pages and an index and all!) along with The Content Planner by Kat Gaskin. I bullet journal primarily to get all of my thoughts down onto paper so that I can keep my blog ideas and to do lists all in one place. I use The Content Planner as an editorial calendar to keep my blog and social media posts organized as well as track my events on a monthly basis! My life revolves more around to do lists that don’t have a set deadline, more like “this needs to be done by the end of the week,” and my day to day doesn’t change much, so I find that this is the best way to keep my current life in order!
Sunglasses and headphones.
This is a no brainer organized work bag essential if I’m being completely honest. I always have my sunglasses with me because a) I love them (duh) and b) the sun is always in my eyes when I leave my apartment to head to work or vice versa, so having them stashed conveniently in my work bag is exactly what I need! This way I’ll never be unprepared for the unpredictable Florida weather.
And who could leave their apartment without their headphones? Regardless of whether or not the work that you do lends itself to listening to music or podcasts it’s always important to have your headphones on you. You never know when you’ll have to make a quick, private call in a crowded room or listen to a voicemail that you missed! You also never know when the need for a break and some music will strike you.
My work involves a lot of repetitive actions and sorting, which can become incredibly dull after doing it for hours on end if I don’t find a way to keep myself occupied (i.e.: listening to music or podcasts). Therefore I keep these with me at all times!
A water bottle.
Y’all, hydration. is. key. I’m serious! Besides that fact that you need water (and plain water, not coffee or soda) to keep you hydrated in order to live, drinking at least 8 cups of water a day can help clear up your skin, improve digestion, and even help curb hunger so you can lose weight! But if you aren’t making the active decision to drink water throughout the day it’s easy to forget. It’s why having a water bottle is a top priority on my list of organized work bag essentials.
I always make sure to keep a water bottle (or in my case, my Kate Spade Tumbler) in my work bag at all times. I have a goal of drinking 40oz of water a day, so having my 20oz tumbler at the ready means I just have to drink and entire tumbler twice throughout the day (one before lunch, one after lunch) to hit my goal! Using a water bottle with a straw also means I can sip on it easily and, in fact, subconsciously at my desk without having to worry about opening it or accidentally knocking it over.
Various small toiletries and beauty supplies.
I pride myself on being prepared for any situation. What does that mean? It means I have a ton of random beauty products, accessories, and over the counter medication at the ready for anything work throws at me.
The one things that I’ve noticed to be true about all offices, corporate or otherwise; is that the air is constantly freezing and always dry. I’ve never had any problems with dry skin before in my life yet when I started work my fingers were constantly raw and peeling! So I keep a small tube of lotion in my bag for emergencies and a larger tube in my desk drawer to ensure that my hands stay smooth and hydrated.Keeping a pouch filled with small toiletries - such as pain reliever, bobby pins, spare hair ties, and lip gloss - in your work bag ensures you're always prepared for whatever the work day throws at you! Click To Tweet
You never know when you might need a quick touch up, which is why I always keep a few essential beauty items on me. Pressed powder in case I’m a bit oily, a hair brush if my hair begins to frizz, a couple tinted lip moisturizers for when I’m feeling like some color, and a small tub of Aquaphor to combat my chapped lips. I’ll also keep a couple of tampons and Advil on me at all times because you never know when you’ll get a killer headache or get surprised by your period, and I ever want to be caught unprepared!