Laptop camera desk digital decluttering

Digital decluttering

When we think of decluttering, we usually think of clearing out our physical environment. Edinburgh-based Beata Mielcarek explains how decluttering can also apply to our digital presence, and how to get started with a digital spring clear out.

How digital decluttering can help us keep to our resolutions:

Can you believe that we are three months into the new year already? This is often the time when we may be tempted to give up on our resolutions, and some old habits and routines may be creeping back into our lives.

Everything around us pushes us into the old ways of living, and the less visible routines are usually the ones leading us astray. For example, if you resolved to save money, but are still subscribed to every major retailer’s newsletter or magazine, chances are you will end up buying things you don’t need. If you resolved to read more, but still subscribe to notifications for multiple TV and Netflix shows and record them weekly, you’re less likely to pick up a book.

These are just some of the subtle changes we usually forget to make, but which could help us with our goals. To reverse the “It’s too hard, I give up” trend, I have compiled a list of other ideas to help you with your resolutions. It’s my personal New Year’s electronic decluttering list.

laptop phone notebook pen digital decluttering

The electronic decluttering list:

  • Review your TV, Amazon Prime and Netflix notifications, and remove shows you already know you’ll never watch. Let’s face it, we all see a movie and show trailers that suck us right in, quickly adding them to our “To Watch” queues. Later the show airs, and we watch a bit, but never fully engage. In that case, why keep it? Just accept it’s not as good as the advert lead you to believe and clear it out of your queue.
  • As you scan through your email inbox every day, unsubscribe from newsletters and promotional e-mails. Personally, I would suggest all of them, but that may seem a bit drastic for some. Instead, be mindful of what you’re actually reading. If you consistently swipe or press delete messages from the same senders, you might as well unsubscribe. This will mean fewer messages and fewer clicks tomorrow.
  • Have you recently checked both your paper and online magazine and newspaper subscriptions? Can you honestly say you have read even half of each? If not, stop worrying about missing out, and unsubscribe. You’ll save a few quid. You’ll stop feeling guilty about not reading it. And when you do have time to read a few articles, chances are you will still be able to Google them anyway.
  • What does your daily post look like these days? Are you signed up for electronic statements and payments yet, or are you still drowning in paper? Less paper means less mess on your kitchen counter or dining room table. never mind fewer missed payments, and zero energy wasted keeping track of the payment deadlines. This is especially true for those annual bills like your home, car, and life insurance policies. I think we could all use that kind of relief.
  • And finally, speaking of feeling relieved – have you reviewed your three credit reference reports for accuracy this year yet? Or backed up your laptop and phone? These items often nag at us, yet we ignore them until it’s too late. It won’t take you long, maybe five minutes per account, to log in and download your credit reference reports. Even a quick look is better than nothing. Backing up your data is also usually a matter of pressing a key. So why not just do it today. The peace of mind is priceless.


If you need any help organising your paperwork, or more guidance for your own digital declutter, you can find a local professional organiser here.


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