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DIGITAL MINIMALISM | how to declutter your online life





Over the years, I've found that if I buy a tote bag, I'll likely fill it to the brim. If I purchase a cross body bag or even a clutch, I'm forced to carry only the essentials. It's the same in a physical space like our homes and it's the same in our digital space. Today I'd like to share with you steps you can take to simplify and declutter your online life.

Recently I came across the term digital minimalism from No Sidebar and thought the term was perfect for what I was trying to encapsulate.

Digital Minimalism is a mindset of questioning which digital communication tools are necessary for your happiness. Whether it be email, social media, or general internet consumption, the purpose of this philosophy is to question whether or not they add value to your life. -No Sidebar

What I'm about to tell you might shock you or even cause you to have pity on us. JP and I got rid of our smart phones in April of 2016 and we haven't looked back. The only social media outlets we use are pinterest and this blog. JP has Facebook but logs in about once every year or so when he gets birthday messages. Call us crazy, but not having a smart phone has simplified our lives and drastically increased our monthly budget. No more alerts and notifications. No more playing the comparison game of whose life looks better online. No more judgments and jealousy. More free time. More contentment. More focus. More productivity. Less distractions. Don't get me wrong, it's not that I hate the internet or social media. In fact, I think social media can be an outstanding tool for most of us. Yes, we were created for human connection but I feel there are other ways to connect to one another that are more personal.

If you're someone who for whatever reason isn't able to get rid of their smartphone and/or doesn't want to eliminate social media but you'd still like to simplify your online life, keep reading.


Something to consider before you begin to declutter is thinking about your "why" in this process. Why do you want to simplify? What are your motivations? What is your purpose for social media? Do you want to learn and grow in a certain area of your life? Do you want to engage and share your wisdom? Do you want to be uplifted and encouraged? Do you want to be entertained? Do you feel a certain way (whether that's positive, negative, neutral) when you see a specific account? These questions are super important to reflect on because they will help you in your filtering process.

When everything is important, nothing is. -Be More With Less

Ok, let's get started. Ready? Go!



EMAIL

Unsubscribed to company newsletters and promotions,  using the website unrollme. You can also create folders to categorize and manage your emails so you can keep the inbox clean. 

YOUTUBE

Set a certain amount of time for watching youtube videos. Take advantage of the Youtube "Watch Later" feature. You don't have to follow every youtuber who has good videos. Don't settle for watching mediocre content. Unsubscribe and unfollow anyone who doesn't inspire you to live your best life.

PHONE // SOCIAL MEDIA

Turn off all phone notifications from social media. You don't need the constant alerts and distractions.

Pick a time to be social media free, like after dinner every night or even every weekend. Along with that, put your phones away during meals.

Give yourself a time limit for spending on social media. When you've reached your limit, you're done.

Call or text your friends instead of stalking them online.

Minimize your phone apps. If you haven't used an app in months and don't plan on it, uninstall. It will give you more space on your phone and will keep your screen tidy with only your favorite and most used apps.

DESKTOP

Have less tabs open on your computer and minimize your bookmarks or un-bookmark them. Sometimes we feel like we need to read and learn everything about everything. We think we'll miss out on some life altering information if we don't read an article or book that is recommended to us by someone we follow or someone who is an expert in that particular field.

If you have any tips for how you've decluttered your online life, I'd love to hear from you in the comments.

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