A Tour of My Minimalistic Desk Setup

We are rapidly approaching the beginning of a very different kind of academic year. Although I am dreading the thought of Zoom teaching, I’m excited to finally have a bit more direction in my life, and in preparation for the year, I thought I’d redo my desk setup. It’s not super decorative because I attempted to go for a more minimalistic approach, but knowing me, it’ll soon be full of way too many things that should be stored elsewhere. Oh well! I think the way it evolves is just as important, but it’ll be nice to document it right now for future comparison.


Monitor

Specifically: AOC 27” monitor

This was originally purchased in 2013 or 2014 for a desktop computer setup that I eventually outgrew. The concept of having a monitor now, though, has been revolutionary for me. It’s so much more enjoyable to view and work on such a big screen, and I’m surprised it took me so long to actually introduce this into my setup.

It connects to my laptop with a micro HDMI/DVI port cable which is 100% as obscure as it sounds, but I mean, it was pretty cheap and you can find anything on eBay so I’m not complaining. It would be cooler if I didn’t have to use the wire but some compromises must be made, especially given the age of this monitor.

Laptop

Specifically: Lenovo Yoga 710

I’ve always been a Windows girl, and this laptop gets the job done for me. I only really use it for academic work and other general internet usage, so it’s more than enough for that.

Weekly Calendar

Specifically: From Sainsbury’s

One of my friends from sixth form has this exact same calendar and it was just so cute, I couldn’t help but get my own. Even if it’s not as useful in my day-to-day life, given my move towards paperless, I really like it and I think it looks cute.

I also like that it stands up by itself, so I use it mainly as a quick place to view upcoming tasks, events or commitments.

Things to Do Lists

Specifically: From Paperchase

I love these no-nonsense, useful, little pre-made templates for when I have a big project to complete. Having stuff written down and in a place where I can see it regularly (as opposed to my digital task management systems) is helpful to keep me focused on these important tasks.

Currently, they have the content that I wanted to briefly cover before university on them, divided by semester.

Lamp

Specifically: I’m actually not sure where this is from, but I’m sure you can find very similar ones by just searching for desk lamps on Google

I’ve had this for a good few years and I love it! It has a dimming function which has genuinely been very convenient, and on its brightest setting, it’s the perfect brightness for those intense study sessions. I’ve been trying to do that thing where you condition yourself to work while the lamp is on, but it’s not been particularly effective as of yet.

Essential Stationery Collection

Specifically: A MedSoc mug from university

The mug contains all the key items of stationery I use regularly. This includes things like coloured pens for basic colours (red, blue, green), multiple black pens, pencils (two, for some reason?) and correction tape. If you want to see a more in-depth analysis of my favourite stationery items, click here to see my blog post on that.

Extended Stationery Collection

Specifically: A pen pot from Tesco

This one has a larger selection of coloured pens, which come in handy when revising, and a few spare black pens.

Water bottle

Specifically: From Amazon

Because hydration is key to life! I remember during the last exam season I experienced, I refilled my water bottle multiple times in a revision session, sometimes as an excuse to get up for a bit, but most of the time because I really chugged that water like there was no tomorrow.

Vaseline

I try to keep vanity-related items away from my desk because honestly, I get a bit distracted, especially given the well-placed mirror on my desk, but chapped lips stress me out!


I hope you enjoyed that tour of my new desk setup! I’ve been mesmerised by beautiful desk setups on Pinterest lately, and I knew my take would always be a little more stripped back than the ones I see on there, but I just find it easier to focus with less distractions around me, including on my desk.

Hope you’ve been staying safe and healthy! Let me know what your desk essentials are and why they are a good quality microphone and webcam in preparation for all those Zoom lectures in September!

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