09 April 2014

5 Tips On Digital Spring Cleaning

There was a great post over on the International Geek Girls Pen Pal Club blog, +5 Charisma, about spring cleaning your technology. You know, getting rid of excess cables (where does that extra cable even go to?!), sprucing up your hard drive, and even cleaning your laptop because, ew, germs. But I think it is also important to do online spring cleaning, too!


Let's call it digital destashing. When you want and need to clean out old bits and pixels from your life. In fact, I've been reading an excellent book called Bit Literacy that talks about properly managing all the bits in our life. From email to text messages to social media, it can get overwhelming and that weight can make us stressed.

Take back your time (and sanity) with some digital destashing! Here's some quick tips.

Start with your inbox. Ah, yes, the notorious email inbox. How many messages do you have just sitting in yours right now? Hundreds? Thousands?! It's time to wrangle your inbox! Gmail makes it super easy to tag things, have separate inboxes, and manage your email properly. Here is my favorite guide on Gmail organization.

Consolidate social media. "Oh yeah, you can find me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google+, Snapchat, Quora, meowmeowbeenz..." Sound like you? It's okay, I used to recklessly sign up for brand new social media sites too and then abandon a good chunk of them, but still get emails or notifications from them. The website, JustDelete.me, makes it easy to do a mass unsubscribe/delete spree to lighten the social media load.

Organize (and back-up!) your files. This one is important! It was also mentioned in the +5 Charisma blog post. Remember to back-up files, photos, music--you name it! I try to back-up everything every other month. But it's also good to have proper organization of your folders, getting rid of software or files you never or rarely use anymore (much like apps you haven't used in months on your phone).

Clean out those digital bookmarks. I have a mountain of bookmarks, spanning across four separate devices, and finally I decided to clean 'em out and only keep the ones that are truly useful. This can be difficult if you're a bit hoarder like myself (I might need that article on English Medieval cooking styles in the future!), but you'll feel a lot better.

Learn to love the offline world. This might be hard for some of us tech addicts out there, but completely unplugging from the online world is good for your health. I mean, no smartphone, no tablet, no computer, just yourself and the offline world. Can you make it for fifteen minutes? A whole hour? Challenge yourself!

And here are a couple goodies I found while doing some digital destashing myself.

This is an actual CAPTCHA thingamajig I got a long time ago and still had it in one of my random folders!


I had an argument one day about the proper way to eat sushi, chopsticks or fingers, because I eat sushi with my fingers. Then one day I found this awesome infographic and immediately sent it to the nay-sayer.

One of the first photos I took with my "big girl camera," a Nikon, at the Detroit Zoo a few summers ago. Makes me giggle because it looks like the bear is smiling for the picture!
Smiley bear

And one more photo. This is when I was still living in the Florida Keys and visiting one of my favorite towns in South Florida, Jupiter. I used this photo in my portfolio for my high school photography class.

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  1. This is definitely something we forget during our usual decluttering madness, but is much needed. The high inbox numbers can greatly add stress to our lives, even if we don't realize it. Thanks for the reminder!

    1. Yes, I almost get a heart attack when I see my bosses' inbox (2,000+) and he's like "Where did that message go...?" Haha

  2. I love this post. Excellent suggestions. I'm always astounded by the random things I have stashed into random folders. And I wonder why I can't find anything.

    1. Same! Have some of the most random links, it's like my own version of StumbleUpon or Reddit!

  3. My inbox needs some major cleaning up!! And I sign up for too many social places and I end up walking away from it a week later. I decided to actually give google+ a try!

    1. Yeah, I'm totally guilty of signing up to any and everything and then forgetting about it a week later. Now that the Female Geek Bloggers G+ Community is happening, gonna try to be on G+ more too.

  4. Ugh, those bookmarks.. I'm afraid to even open it! D: I recently went through all of my inboxes and cleaned those out. It always turns into a mess fast.

    1. Right? But it feels so great to be like "I need that link again..." and voila! Easy-peasy.

  5. YES! I needed Just Delete me in my life!

  6. Great ideas! I definitely need to do more than one of these things. I recently cleaned out my Inbox and I had over a million messages! I cut it down to just over 100 but now it's stacking up again. Definitely need to unsubscribe more.


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