It can be easy to overlook your digital life when working through decluttering your things. The truth is, it’s easier to see the physical clutter in our homes and that is why digital clutter is sometimes overlooked. It is just as important to perform a digital declutter, as it is to declutter your bathroom, kitchen or laundry room. In order to truly declutter your life, you need to ensure that all aspects of it are tackled. So today, let’s talk about doing a digital declutter.
We all have email accounts. Perhaps some of us even have more than one. Do you still need that second or third account? If it’s turned into a spam account then go ahead and delete it.
Getting your inbox empty is another aspect of this digital declutter. There are likely a few emails that have been sticking around that you have been meaning to read. Do so now. You may find that the information no longer applies to you, that the special offer has expired or that you need to respond to some.
Check your email subscriptions as well. Are they all ones you want to continue to receive? If not, then now is the time to unsubscribe. This is especially true of those emails you get, but can’t remember ever signing up for. Chances are you never did sign up and they are just cluttering your inbox unnecessarily.
Between YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming services, you have likely accumulated quite a to-watch list. But ask yourself, are you really going to watch all of those videos and shows? There is a good chance that most of them you still intend to watch, however, there likely are a few that you have lost interest in. Start by removing these from the list. From there, you may find it easier to remove other shows. Anything that you haven’t removed, be sure to watch them within a certain time limit. If that time limit has passed and you still haven’t watched the videos, then go ahead and remove them.
Over the last few months, I have whittled my Netflix to-watch list down from 50+ shows and movies to about a dozen. Most of them I watched, but a few I removed because I no longer wished to watch them. I also worked on my YouTube to-watch list, going from over 140 videos to about a 20, and I am actively working through those remaining ones.
Facebook groups can be great for learning new skills, selling items or keeping up with the latest news. However, it can be easy to lose track of how many groups you are in and whether they are still valuable to you or not. Go through your Facebook group list and look at the recent activity in each group. Does it still appeal to you? Are you active in the group? Do you enjoy seeing those posts on your timeline? These are all things to consider. Weeding out those groups can improve your Facebook experience, as you will no longer be scrolling past things that you don’t care about.
I didn’t follow many Facebook groups, but I did leave a few that had lost their appeal or were now inactive. Surprisingly, I had several invites to various groups that I had not yet noticed as well. They weren’t my cup of tea, so I declined the invite.
Much like Facebook Groups, we all have a number of YouTube channels that we follow. But how often do you watch videos from those YouTubers? If you can’t remember the last time you watched a particular YouTuber, then it may be time to unsubscribe. Or, perhaps their content has changed and you are no longer interested in it, in that case, there is no reason to remain subscribed.
I was able to cut my YouTube channel subscriptions from 93 to 31. Several of the channels no longer interested me and some of them hadn’t had any videos posted in months. Now, I feel like I can better keep up with the channels that are there and truly enjoy the content being produced.
Whether on your computer or phone, chances are there are apps that you haven’t touched in a while. Perhaps there are even apps that are there but you’re not sure how they got there – my husband has this issue, as Windows is constantly adding apps to his computer that it thinks he needs. Those apps are taking up valuable space. If you haven’t opened them in a while or they are acting glitchy, then it’s time to let them go.
We all know what apps we open regularly on our phones, so anything beyond those, that aren’t necessary for the function of the phone, should be removed. Be sure to tackle this part of your digital declutter so that your phone runs more efficiently.
Do you have a habit of bookmarking pages but then never visiting that site again? I know I have done this in the past. Going through your browsers bookmarks can be a tedious affair, especially if there are a ton of bookmarks. However, clearing these out is a great idea. Maybe you will find a recipe you had been meaning to try but it got lost amid all of the other bookmarks. Now is your chance to read through all of those articles and then delete them.
I’m still working on this task, as I had a plethora of bookmarks spread out between two browsers, but I am steadily making a dent in it.
I saved the best, and likely most time-consuming, for last.
Unless you have been keeping up with your files all along, then chances are you have a large number of them sitting in various folders. I know I have always had a hard time keeping my computer files from getting to the overwhelming stage. Even more so since I have two hard drives on my computer. You don’t even want to know how many duplicate files I found.
To tackle these files. Start in one area. If you want, start where there are few files and work your way up from there. Check that the information is still relevant. Photos can take quite a bit of time to sort through, but it is a necessary task. Delete any similar photos, those that are blurry or have the dreaded finger at the edge of the frame. Photos that had been saved from online sites may also be deleted if you no longer need them.
Keep an eye out for duplicate files that are saved in different locations. Sometimes one file will have been more recently updated. Have a look at both files and keep the one that is most useful to you.
Much like any decluttering task, stick with it until you are done. It doesn’t matter if it takes you a day or a month to get it all done. What’s important is that you do it. Once the task is complete, it will be easy to keep up with it as new files come into play.
Have you done a digital declutter lately? Now is the perfect time to do it.