10 Things I Do To Simplify My Digital Life
It’s easy to look around your life and see the clutter on your counters or in your closet, but what about when it comes to the stuff we don’t see? In today’s world, we carry around a lot of digital devices that all build up clutter too.
Every time I see another storage unit go up in a town, I’m a little saddened to think about how much stuff goes into those individual units and never gets used. We can do that with our digital devices. We put files and photos on them and never go back to them. We might even pay for extra cloud storage, month after month, and not know what we have on them.
Now, it’s not just cloud storage for extra files that can get overwhelming. If we’re not careful, the amount of apps on our phones, emails we get, and files we save can get out of control. Today, I want to share a few things I’m currently pursuing to help simplify my digital life.
- Unfollow any social media pages and profiles I don’t get value from. (You can still “like” a page, but not “follow” it. When you do so you can still support you friends’ businesses on Facebook, but not see their updates ALL the time.)
- Unsubscribe daily to different email lists I somehow got on. This is a hard one to do because I’ve been working at this for a month now, and still find the list is long. Depending on how often you do this, you may have a new habit, but I promise the unsubscribing is worth it. When you get it down to the list of things you actually want to be subscribed to, you can finally see the most important information.
- Set filters in my inbox to automatically label specific emails or auto-archive specific emails.
- Delete apps you don’t need. You know those conversations you have with friends where they tell you about some new fun app you absolutely must have? You might download it right then and there, but as it turns out, you never actually use it in real life. We can all stand to eliminate a few apps on our phone or tablet.
- Turn off notifications for specific websites and social media platforms on my phone and devices.
- Backup my computer every few months or before a big trip. Yes, I know I could do it more often, but since most of my stuff is saved to the Cloud on a daily basis as it is created, I am not as stressed about my physical computer pooping out.
- Use the cloud more and more to store files. Even if there are some I don’t need now, but I know I may need for tax purposes or old client archives, I know they are safe and backed up somewhere I can find them later.
- Name things in a way that makes sense. I learned that naming things is really important. Be consistent with whatever way you choose, but this will help you find what you’re looking for later on. It will also save you time when you go looking for files.
- Save ideas using the right system for me. I recently learned that emailing myself ideas all the time was only cluttering up my inbox. Instead, I started using Trello and organizing my ideas based on different categories, and then when I have a new idea to add to it, I peruse through a few of the other ideas from before. My inbox is less cluttered and I’m still keeping track of all of those books I want to read, business ideas, creative projects I want to do, and more.
- Do regular cleanups of my files. I like to do this on plane flights when I don’t have internet (or don’t want to pay for internet on a plane). It’s a tedious and tiring thing to do, but in small chunks every few months, this can be an easy way to stay on top of your files and photos.