Before I jump into how to minimize digital clutter, let’s define it first! Digital minimalism falls within the minimalism umbrella and it is a part of a minimalist lifestyle where individuals intentionally choose to remove the things that don’t add any value to their life. This particular part of the movement is called digital clutter!
Digital clutter is sneaky, it builds up fast in our electronic devices and this junk keeps on building as we tend to ignore it. However, digital clutter, similar to physical clutter has a tendency to affect our focus and productivity because today our life is built around the digital world. Today I am going to discuss a few steps which you can take to minimize your digital clutter effectively.
How to Minimize Your Digital Clutter
1. MAKE Unsubscribing a Priority!
Don’t ignore the newsletters or email lists you’ve subscribed to in the past that are clogging up your inbox with irrelevant information, these emails can really distract you.
Cancel subscriptions on sites that you don’t use anymore and from now only provide your email for something very important. Also, free up your various inboxes by deleting irrelevant emails and archiving old ones.
2. DECLUTTER Images
One way to minimize digital clutter is to check your phone, computer, table, etc for old, random, duplicates, or distorted images and delete them. You can also consider saving them on cloud storage using services like Google Drive, Amazon Photos and Dropbox.
3. MINIMIZING DIGITAL CLUTTER INCLUDES Applications
Set a time limit and go through your phone and check the applications you have not used in a long time. Getting rid of unnecessary apps is an important part of minimizing digital clutter. It will buffer you from unnecessary notifications from them that might capture your focus and distract you.
Also, try sorting apps according to your usage or alphabetically, and keep the ones you use most on the home screen. This will make keep your home page more organized.
4. Limit social media
I can’t talk about digital clutter without mentioning screen time. If you have an iPhone check your usage times. Be aware of mindless scrolling on social media because it can really take over your life. Choose to unfollow pages, groups, accounts, Youtube channels, etc on various social media platforms that are no longer important to you. I recently removed myself from 26 Facebook groups and it took about an hour but my home feed was much cleaner! Most were blogging related but I instantly felt better having those groups off my feed.
5. Use Dropbox or Google Drive
These digital storage services are like a safe space in today’s world. Not only saving files in such spaces allows you to access them from anywhere but it also helps to free up a lot of clutter from your laptop and phones. And remember, do not save confidential files on cloud space!
6. Manage your desktop
Another important aspect of minimizing digital clutter is removing folders, files, shortcuts, images, etc on your desktop can distract you from being productive. So, choose to keep only those files or folders that you frequently use to maintain a clear desktop.
Doing so will ensure that you don’t feel unorganized and stressed whenever you open your laptop/computer.
7. Clear junk from web browsers
Consider clearing cache, cookies, and history regularly from your web browser to free up some space and enhance your browsing experience.
Also, check for the bookmarks that you’ve saved over a period of time, organize them according to categories, and discard the ones you no longer need.
8. Perform Digital maintenance regularly
Digital decluttering is not a one-time thing so, clear your emails, photos, folders, desktop, browsers, etc on a regular basis. You can choose to schedule such maintenance activity weekly or monthly- I usually set an alert on my phone!
Decluttering your digital world is an ideal way to maintain your sanity in today’s era. Reducing any kind of clutter allows you to function better and think more clearly, it provides you with the opportunity to enjoy the things you actually want in your life. Digital minimalism is one way you can simplify certain areas of your life which allows you to be more focused and calm.
Also, I would love to know what other tips you inculcate in your routine to minimize digital clutter, so drop a comment!