To me, digital minimalism is when you question everything that you use in your digital life. Digital minimalism comprises all of the tools you use that are necessary for your happiness. It is when you question if these things are adding value to your life, or are they hindering you from progressing in life. Whether it is using social media because you enjoy it, or because you “have to be on a social network” due to blogging, etc.
Lately, I’ve been toying with the idea of digital minimalism after reading this post from No Sidebar. It made me realize how much of my time I’m allowing technology to consume my life instead of focusing on what I deem most important.
I’ve worked on reducing my digital clutter a while ago, but I’ve been doing it a lot more lately. There was a post that I wrote all about reducing digital clutter, but it somehow disappeared! So, I found some older text that I used, edited it, and now I’m reposting it for you all because this aspect of clutter is an issue for us all.
Honestly, any type of clutter is bad. Especially when it comes to technology. Technology is something that we all use every single day. Whether we are watching television, talking on the phone, or browsing Facebook. We all come into contact with digital products, directly or indirectly. A great way to calm our minds and fix a few aspects of our lives is to decrease the amount of digital clutter that is within our midst – don’t you agree?
how to reduce digital clutter:
use a digital filing system like dropbox or google drive
I personally use Dropbox. I love that there is an app that I can use on my phone and on my MacBook. It is also nice that they sync between each other, which makes it easy to transfer pictures or files. Especially when you are on the go and you don’t have time to post something. You can save it on Dropbox and pull it up on your computer/phone at a later time. I do this frequently.
clear out your inbox
Most people try to have a inbox zero, but it’s not always attainable. Instead limiting what you allow into your inbox and clearing up junk mail is attainable. Your inbox should be a sacred place and you shouldn’t let anything and everything into it. You should only sign up for things that you think are valuable and helpful. Just like you should make sure to set aside time each week, or month to unsubscribe from things that aren’t helping you in some way.
delete apps off of your phone that you don’t use
Take a day to go through your phone and consider all of the apps that you have. When you haven’t used an app in months then it’s time to get rid of it. It only takes up space on your phone that you could use in other ways. If you never use an app, but might someday – get rid of it! If you end up needing it three years later, you can download it then.
delete extra images
Save all of your photos to Dropbox (or another storage service) this way you can delete photos on your phone or camera to save space. So many people freak out when their phone’s break and they lose everything on them. Because they haven’t saved their photos anywhere else and they have no way of retrieving their images. If you save all of your images to a storage place, like Dropbox, you will be able to retrieve them whenever you need them.
Getting rid of extra images also applies to your personal camera. As a blogger, I take a lot of stock photos for my own site and a lot of the time there are multiple images. I have no need for these extra images, so it doesn’t make sense to allow them to take up space on my camera. In short, I get rid of them.
limit media consumption (socially and otherwise)
There are so many social media outlets, like Instagram, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Twitter, Reddit, and more. It can be tiring. Sometimes you just have to minimize where you allow your attention to be because social media can truly take over your life! I know this first hand by being a blogger. I set aside time to peruse social media to limit my consumption. Since I’ve become aware of mindless scrolling, I no longer allow myself to do so.
Also, consider the other forms of media that you could limit, such as television and podcasts. I watch more YouTube videos and listen to more podcasts than anything. But there are times that I can allow these things to consume me and not allow me to focus on what truly matters. Since I’ve decided to limit all media consumption and only allow what I truly enjoy in my life I’ve noticed a big difference. There are some podcasts that I have in this post that I don’t listen to as much anymore. Because I was in a different stage in my life back then in regards to where I currently am. There’s nothing wrong with them at all. I still love them and recommend them, but I don’t listen to them on a weekly basis.
unplug & recharge
Above all, the best way to reduce digital clutter is to unplug and recharge. I took part in a twenty-four hour digital detox and it was amazing. It made me get to the heart of why I became a minimalist and why I wanted to get this post out about digital consumption. I’ve lessened the amount of consumption I allow in my life. I only allow things in my life that bring me joy (partially the Marie Kondo way) and I’ve gotten rid of the rest.
Comment below & let me know how do you reduce your digital clutter?