If you’re anything like me, then you like things to be organised.
I’m the sort of person that likes everything to be put away in a certain place, the cushions to be plumped in a specific fashion and for my bedroom to maybe look like it could pass as pinterest-worthy. (That’s the dream eh?)
Now I’m by no means perfect. Of course, there are times when my receipts pile up or I just shove something into a drawer so that on the outside my room can look a little bit more hashtag interior design goals again.
When you have to live in a house full of clutter and mess, it gives us the motivation we all need to get the feather duster and binbags out and give it a good sort out.
But what about our virtual lives?
We live in an age where writing things down on pen and paper has been replaced by digital documents. Our once full ring-binders and filing cabinets now consist of virtual libraries. Nowadays, we consider our laptops / phones / digital devices to be extensions of ourselves; storing our whole lives on them.
Just like our homes, our devices can also get cluttered.
Hands up, how many times have you just saved something to your desktop until suddenly you have about 100 files clogging up your home screen? How many times have you named a document something really useful, like jhpkxgS8D7Y8BH – and then for some reason you’re never able to find it again?
We’ve all been there.
So, if you’re looking to give your digital space the TLC it deserves, check out these easy tips that you can start doing today:
Keep Your Desktop Tidy
Remember what I said earlier about just saving random files to your desktop? Yeah, I’d stop doing that. Try and keep your desktop nice and clear, so that when you turn on your device you don’t get an immediate headache. Also, try and get rid of any shortcuts you don’t need because it’s just wasting space. Think of the programs you use the most and keep the shortcuts to those and nothing else.
Put Together a Great Filing System
We may not have as many ugly looking filing cabinets anymore, but having a good filing system in place on your device is a must. Name your folders and files properly so that you aren’t spending hours hunting around for that spreadsheet you created last week.
Remember to Clear Out Your Downloads Folder
This one is a bit sneaky as it isn’t a folder you create yourself. Every time you download something from an email or online, it tends to go straight to your downloads folder. Try and go in weekly and clear it out. If you don’t need it anymore; delete it. If you do then name it sensibly and file it away in the correct location. I would recommend going in and doing this on a weekly basis. Trust me, you don’t want to leave that piled up for any longer!
Don’t Forget to Take Out the Trash
No this isn’t just a funny metaphor. All those files and photos that you delete on your computer get sent to your Trash or Recycling Bin. It’s a good idea to ‘take out the trash’ on a weekly basis, which can easily be done by right-clicking on the icon and clicking ‘empty’ or ‘delete’. This is a great habit to get into as if it gets too full, it can often slow down your device.
Sort Through Your Emails
I know it’s hard to keep up with all the emails that come flooding through your inbox on a daily basis. Often, we get sent useless emails that we don’t really read and then they just get left to rot away. Make a note on a regular basis to not only sort through the email in your inbox, (i.e. delete them, reply to them or move them into a different folder) but also try and make a conscious effort to unsubscribe to newsletters you no longer need and mailing lists you don’t want to be a part of. It’s really simple to do this, usually if you just scroll to the bottom of the email, there will be an ‘unsubscribe’ link.
Back it Up
Don’t just save stuff to your computer and leave it be – you need to back it up. Whether you like a good old fashion external hard drive, the cloud OR you’re extra savvy and use both, remember to create a regular back-up of your files. I’m not saying who, but I know someone who cried when she lost all the files to her Sims game when her computer died and she didn’t have a back-up… Totes not me.
Delete Those Apps
Moving onto your phone now and have a look through your phone for any ‘extra’ apps that you no longer use. Haven’t played Candy Crush in five years? You can probably delete it. Doing this will not only de-clutter your phone, but it will also make some extra room in your storage, which is always welcomed.
Sort Through Your Photos
Having a smartphone is all fun and games until suddenly you have too many photos of your nice-looking coffee, random screenshots and 194 selfies which haven’t seen the light of day. Regularly sort out the photos that you want to keep and the ones you want to delete. If it’s easier, create folders on your phone, so you can keep a track of what your photographing.
Regularly de-cluttering your digital space will not only help maintain the health of your computer, but it will also make you feel 1000% more productive. If you have any more de-cluttering tips, then feel free to leave them in the comments below or tweet me @_chloeabigail.