Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Removing Digital Clutter

Hello Friends!

As we get into full swing for spring cleaning I realized on major part of my life that I constantly neglect to "clean up"...... My digital life!! It can be difficult to even think of digital clutter, or even how to get started. It doesn't take up physical space. You can't see it piling up when you walk into your home. It's SO easy to overlook.

Dealing with digital clutter is imperative. How often do we sit down at the computer to get work done, but end up completely distracted. We can't find a file, or something on the internet catches our eye. Digital clutter is not only distracting, but also clutters our brains.

So what steps do we take? How do we rid of a problem we often overlook? Here are some simple things we can all do.

One// Unsubscribe to unwanted emails

This is such an obvious one, but how often do we just delete the emails instead of going through the trouble of unsubscribing. I'm guilty of that! Be intentional when you check your email. Set time aside to sort through what's new in your inbox. I'd, also, suggest checking your emails on your computer instead of phone so you actually click on the links that you'll "just look at later". 

All those blogs, stores, email newsletters that you subscribe to? If you think "oh I'll look at it later" then never get around to it? UNSUBSCRIBE! If you don't you might miss an email you really needed. Go through your subscriptions and decide which ones you'd really like to make an effort to read. Keep those. Then make a point of reading them.

Two// Purge your internet bookmarks

I'm going to toot my own horn here and say that I'm really good at this! Basically follow the same rules as number one. If you bookmarked to read later, but then you never did? Unsubscribe. If you have a bookmark that you haven't clicked on in several month, unsubscribe! Be realistic with yourself. If something catches your eye again, go for it read it, then delete it! If it no longer interests you, delete it!

Three// Turn off phone notifications

Also something I'm fairly good at. I personally hate having a ton of notifications. I don't like watching my phone screen light up. The main issue I have is with the news article notifications. I personally love not having a long list of notifications on my phone. I don't need a long list of notifications to tell me what to look at. It is liberating to check facebook, twitter, pinterest, etc. when I can or want to.

I also like to turn on the "do not disturb" function on my phone. When I am particularly busy or need to concentrate that's when I like to turn it on. I like having the peace and quiet. I highly recommend doing this when you need some quiet time. It is also a good suggestion for overnights. I even turn on the do not disturb on my laptop so I'll get less distracted.

Four// Remove games and unused apps

If you are not using an app, they are taking up space that you could use for something else. Get rid of them! If they're games or distracting you from more important things, get rid of them!! If you don't have something that helps you procrastinate chances are, you'll be more productive. I know some people that don't even have Facebook on their phones.

Five// Remove unused icons from your desktop

Don't underestimate the power of a clean desktop. The same way a messy room can increase stress and anxiety, so can a messy desktop. You'll be surprised how much calmer you can feel looking at your computer and there aren't a slew of icons staring back at you. It also makes organizing your stuff wayy harder.

Six// Label everything!

I actually stole this from my parents. Get detailed in all your naming! That goes from folders to files. It is much easier to find things when they are clearly labeled. You will know what everything is and if it is worth keeping or tossing.

Because of my parents I am also in the habit of using dates to name my pictures. I used to opt for short names or descriptive names and it was confusing. Having the dates and a couple words to "name" the event made it easy to find and they are always in order! 

It takes some time to organize your files, but start sooner rather than later. Especially when you are uploading pictures. Immediately, name the pictures and put them in the correct files! All the time at the beginning saves time later.

How do you remove some of that clutter?