Dump The Clutter
February 16, 2018
Digital clutter can be a huge headache, create stress, and stop your productivity in its tracks. That’s why I teamed up with Bynder for Get Organized and Be Productive Month (GO Month) to share actionable tips and tricks (here and here) you can use to declutter and organize your digital files.
And, though GO Month is officially over, there are several things you can do to tame your unruly digital files. One of those things is to hit the delete button. Start by getting rid of unnecessary files like the seven files mentioned in today’s post.
7 Digital Files You Must Delete Right Now
1. Photos and other graphics
Are you saving multiple copies of the same photographs? Photos can have an emotional charge especially when they bring back amazing memories. But, do you really need duplicates and triplicates of the same picture?
No, you don’t and that’s good news because this is a great place to start your digital decluttering efforts. Deleting unneeded multiples is a really good first step.
And, for you bloggers and creative types out there, you should do the same if you have several copies of the same graphic that you’ve created.
2. Mobile apps
197 billion. That’s the number of mobile downloads that the folks at Statista estimated for 2017. That’s a pretty large number.
You probably have some of those digital downloads on your smartphone and tablet. Do you use them all? Are you keeping them because you purchased them or heard that they’re “really great?” If you fall into either of those buckets, now’s a great time to let them go.
Get in the habit of kicking out those old, outdated, or unused apps. Take a moment right now to schedule a weekly or monthly “Toss It Tuesday,” “Throw It Out Thursday,” or “So Long Sunday” decluttering session.
No matter what you call it, come up with an easy to follow digital decluttering routine.
3. Desktop files
How many files are on your desktop? If your files are wallpapering your desktop, you’re probably getting distracted by the clutter. You’re also likely to be wasting precious time searching for the files you want.
As you sift through the digital files living on your desktop, look for duplicates to delete and start grouping similar files in categories.
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One more thing — instead of filling up your desktop, think about using cloud storage (and a tagging system) to keep and easily find your important files.
4. Facebook links
Facebook “saves” has probably become more popular now that Facebook has started allowing users to save content they want to get back to later.
The problem is that you might not remember what you saved and will forget to go back to read them. So, unless you have a regular habit of reading and removing your saved links in Facebook, you’ll want to jump in clear them out.
Start by unsaving the oldest ones first and work your way to more current content.
5. Music files
Music can be a great productivity tool. Listen to the right jams and you can find yourself on the winning end of getting things done! Unfortunately, like photos, your music files can also multiply quickly and take up much needed room on your hard drive.
Okay, it’s broken record time. As you start organizing your music files, look for duplicates you can delete. Found a song that’s not to your liking anymore? Out it goes.
Also think about as other ways you can listen to your favorite tunes by using services like Pandora, Google Play Music, and Amazon Prime Music. Why? Becuase live streaming doesn’t take up space on your laptop and you can listen on any device.
Videos are an engaging complement to your blog posts. People love watching them! But, what they don’t love is having piles and piles of them in no recognizable order.
Check out the video below from Justin over at Primal Video for some specific ways you can start organizing your video files. Remember, you can also use tags or labels to help you identify your content.
And, one more time for good measure — delete duplicates and old versions that you no longer need.
7. Blog posts and notes
So, this is one I’ve had some painful experiences with in the past. Having various versions of blog posts and notes makes it super difficult to find what you need when you need it. Again, this all adds up to long searches and wasted time.
Keep your final copies and delete old drafts. And, if you’ve closed down one blog and moved to a different niche, let go of the old stuff to make room for the new.
Author: Deb Lee
Deb is passionate about productivity, coffee, apps, WordPress, blogging, & social media …not necessarily in that order. She’s a Digital Business Coach, appaholic, blogger, speaker, and an Evernote Certified Consultant. Deb takes great delight in helping entrepreneurs and business teams leverage technology to increase productivity.… View full profile ›
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My Dad was a Creative Director all his life. I spent my youth working in the agency, and the apple didn’t fall far from the tree. All those experiences made me into a thinker, dreamer and doer that specializes in integrated branding, marketing, digital and public relations services. I feel my key value to clients is the ability to turn creative concepts into analytically driven marketing plans and tools with greater stopping power & relevance, leading to greater results.
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