|This is the first part of Declutter Diary Series, If you haven’t read the introduction of this series yet, check it out first, here.
As I’ve said in the intro, clutter is not just any physical mess in your room or anywhere, it could also be digital. It is anything that distracts you from focusing on what your heart really wants. These digital clutters create overwhelm, procrastination and confusion; and more of what you don’t have to feel.
Now you have an idea about clutter. Let’s start with what most of you are holding right now, where most of you are probably reading this-smartphone.
How many hours do you stare at your phone screen each day? How many of what fills most of your storage do you think you need? What percentage of what’s in there do you open in a day? How much clutter does your phone hold that weighs you down, and keeps you from finishing what’s to be done?
So, you installed productivity tools for you to be productive? Created a reminder for your to-do tasks, so you can finish them in time? Installed fitness applications to start a workout plan? Or educational apps to finish a free online course? Yet you couldn’t. These apps claim to help you be more productive, but in contrast, having too much applications in your phone steals your productivity.
Delete all your superfluous applications, and organize the essential ones. Don’t let them digitally rot away. Remember that you can always have an app back on your phone easily.
How many old documents, eBooks, pdf are in your file manager you don’t notice it’s there? Check through your files and choose what you will not need for another two weeks. After picking out the files, don’t delete them all straight away, instead scan through your files and choose again which files to delete or not. I suggest to back up your important files on an external drive (flash drive or SD card) or better in a cloud storage (Google drive). Just leave what you will need for the following few weeks.
Open your gallery in your phone and look at all the images that reminds you of good memories, of good people, of good things. Leave them in your gallery.
Instead, select all your duplicate photos, the ones you took to choose from a good shot to post and not the best ones to be picked, delete them all. Delete your pins (in case you use Pinterest) or any downloaded images that are only there because it looks perfect, but is not adding any value to your daily lives. Delete most of your screenshots as well. These images only take a ton of space in your storage.
I suggest you upload your sentimental photos in a cloud storage like Google Photos.
Delete unnecessary message threads from your network, from verifications, spam messages, or old announcements. Open your unread messages, and decide whether you need to reply or you can just delete it. One more thing, unsubscribe from any email you don’t need to be updated to like new products or wish lists.
Bookmarks and Tabs
I used to have 99+ tabs in my chrome application, and a hundred more sites I bookmarked. Either you have less or more, remove most of them. You won’t be able to read or check them all one day if you keep adding more every day and constantly telling yourself you will need it someday.
Cache and App Data
These may not take a huge amount of space, but it still does consume some. Delete cache on your phone- browser or app. Delete the folders created by the applications once installed.
Remember that using your phone more than the time it should be used will affect your sleep, mood, concentration and well, productivity. Give yourself a break from your smartphone, so you can focus more on improving your well-being.
Don’t let your situation be changed to you being controlled by your smartphone instead of you who controls your phone.
- Choose a minimalist photo, something that is of bold color, or a nature photo as your wallpaper. Don’t set your own images such as selfies as your home screen or lock screen photo because it will only increase your attachment to your phone. Check out my other blog where I talk about how plants or just images of it is good for us.
- Organize home screen. Organize your applications into folders with names like Connect for social media apps or Write for dictionary and word apps.
- Maintain. Declutter once a month.
- Keep your phone clean
I’ll just leave this quote from a ted talk I once watched, Think of all the possibilities off your phone instead of on your phone.