During these unprecedented times, it’s particularly easy to have clutter pile up without even noticing. The key is to catch it before it snow-balls into chaos and stress. One area that we can often forget to declutter is our devices – our phones, tablets, and computers.
Here are six easy tips to help you digitally declutter:
Create folders and subfolders to categorize your files
Applicable for all types of devices, sorting related things into folders not only keeps the relevant files and applications together, it immediately gives you back your screen real estate. By having your digital 'stuff' neatly organized into folders, you no longer have to stress about where a certain file or application is, and can readily open it!
Delete or archive unnecessary files/applications
We know, we know… “but I need it!”
Do you really? If you're unsure, the win-win solution is to create a folder called, “Archive” on a computer, and add all the necessary subfolders to further organize the different files or applications that aren’t essential right now.
Of course, if you already know you won’t be needing a particular file anymore, instead of deleting it permanently, move it to the trash bin! We like this approach, as it declutters your workspace, but also gives you the option to retrieve deleted files and programs – if you decide you do need it.
Turn on airplane mode during productivity (or anytime)
Believe it or not, you don’t have to throw your phone or tablet across the room to avoid those pesky notifications from text messages, phone calls, and notoriously – social media.
Airplane Mode icon; if it changes colour, it’s activated! You can now enjoy the silence of notifications, while still keeping your device close by.
Take a break every 25 minutes
Borrowing the concept of the Pomodoro Technique, which is a time management method created by Francesco Cirillo, for every 25 minutes of work, you should take a short 10-minute break. It’s quite convincing that taking periodic rest times from work can improve your productivity and results, since you’re a human being – not a robot.
Take your well-deserved breaks!
Set a day to clean up your emails weekly
Similar to regular mail, emails can pile up quickly if left unmanaged. Once a week, set aside some time to tidy-up your inbox, to organize all the emails that have already been looked at, and to delete junk mail. Creating folders should help with this.
Limiting social media
Spending too much time on social media can be draining and can also tremendously lower your productivity levels. Five minutes of mindless scrolling can quickly turn into an hour or two. Remember, these platforms are designed to be addictive.
We tend to forget that social media promotes perfectionism through use of filters, and that it generally focuses on the positive highlights of people's lives. We forget that the person behind the camera, or the post, is also a human with stressors in their everyday life. It is important to remember that the vast majority of people on social media don't look anything like their online presence in real life.
Limiting social media time is important for mental health. This can easily be done as most social media apps will allow you to set a daily timer that will alert you once you've reached your daily allotted time.
We'd love love to hear what tips you use to help manage your digital stress, to share, drop us a comment below!