Are you slightly addicted to your digital devices? Do you feel more naked without your phone than you do without clothes? Probably… if you’re totally honest with yourself. But fear not, help is at hand. LOVESPACE have designed a really simple Digital Declutter Challenge.
Here at LOVESPACE we spend all day every day helping people to declutter their homes and live a bigger life one box at a time. It got us thinking. Decluttering shouldn’t be limited to physical objects in our home, we should be decluttering our digital worlds too. With that in mind, we have designed a simple digital declutter challenge which will help you take baby steps towards achieving a more peaceful and productive day to day life.
The team tackling the challenge
Tsuiyee the “Online Shopaholic”, wanting to break the habit and stop spending so much on online shopping.
Luke the “Digital Procrastinator“, hoping that this challenge will increase the productivity of his time spend on mobile devices.
Francisco the “Over-Downloader“, determined to clean-up his digital act and make sure the space on his phone is put to best use.
Alison the “Social Media Addict”, realised it was time to reduce hours spent on social media sites.
Gracie the “Serial Scroller”, wanting to cut back on time wasted scrolling through pointless content.
Dave the “Digitally Decluttered Darling”, hoping to test how well he has already decluttered his digital world.
Here’s how we got on…
Day 1) Picture Pandemonium
Arrange all pictures on your phone into albums, deleting any duplicates, blurry images or accidental pocket shots. Suggested albums include: Holidays, nights out, scenery, family, work. Next time you want to show off your insta-worthy sunset snap or your picture-perfect pet it will be so much easier!
Francisco: “This one was far more painful than I thought! I deleted over 1600 redundant pictures and I’m still not finished! I will have to tackle this one over two days!”
Luke: “I didn’t realise how many duplicate photos I had! I spent an hour deleting them all and now I have much more space on my phone”
Alison: “I can’t believe how many photos of the inside of my handbag I had on my phone taking up valuable storage space!”
Day 2) Dump the Junk
Unsubscribe from all mailing lists you don’t read anymore. You can visit unroll.me and enter your email address and password to see all of the lists you are currently signed up to. Then you can easily unsubscribe on the site. Easy peasy.
Emily:“This is the best thing ever. Why have I not done this before? I unsubscribed from 34 mailing lists, including “Great Books and Fresh Coffee”… definitely don’t remember signing up to that one. Such an easy digital declutter tool.”
Tsuiyee: “It was a bit scary to see how many mailing lists I was on that I didn’t even know about! I’m glad I’m off them now”
Francisco: “Best product ever… 31 unsubscribes in less than 2 minutes. Genius.”
Alison: “Don’t forget to update this regularly, some sneaky emailers still get in there somehow!”
Day 3) Be in the Moment
Put your phone away at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Out of sight, out of mind. Allow yourself to concentrate on enjoying your food, your break and your company. Let’s give ourselves time to think when we were alone, and engaged in the art of conversation when in company. How hard can it be?
Dave:“I try and do this anyway, I hate phone zombies! Try and put your phone as far away as possible, it makes a big difference. It feels weird at first… I guess that is telling of how attached we all our to our phones these days!”
Gracie: “I struggled at breakfast when I was eating on my own, so tempting to scroll through mindless timelines instead of just taking the time to chill and have a think.”
Tsuiyee: “Meals are usually prime online shopping time for me but I am determined to cut down! It was actually a lot easier than I thought so I will be doing this more often!”
Luke: “I did this one easily, but mainly because I hardly had time to eat my meals let alone have a phone going at the same time. That’s not always the case though obviously.”
Day 4) Push It Real Good
In the words of Salt ‘N’ Pepa, it’s time to push it real good. Turn off all push-notifications except for those you really need for work such as emails and messages. Say no to constant reminders of all the ways you can use your phone to procrastinate and let yourself live more in the moment.
Emily:“This one was dreamy… was great opening up my app at the end of the day and having things waiting for me.”
Dave:“I try and do this one all the time, especially now I have so many friends living abroad. Otherwise I get notifications about nice meals they’re having when it’s 3am over here!”
Day 5) Take a Brutal App-roach
Delete all apps on your device that you haven’t used in 2 months. This will make it much easier to find the apps you need and will free up space on your phone. On your first home screen, leave only the apps that you rely on day to day. Put all other apps you are keeping on the next page, such as social media, games and online shopping apps.
Gracie: “This was tricky, because I get a fear of missing out and panic that I might need them as soon as I delete them. But I realise I was being stupid, I can always re-download them if I do need them again. But I bet that won’t be the case.”
Emily: “This was a killer. I had to say goodbye to ‘Ukulele tabs’, Skyscanner and easyJet because I’m not the regular jet setting Ukulelist that I thought I was.”
Dave: “I also do this already (about 3 times a year). As a tech-bod I like to keep all my devices as free of clutter as I can so they can perform the things I need them to as well as they can. Having said that, I did delete a couple of apps – not because I don’t use them, but because they are just distraction apps or life-style porn apps.”
So, that’s how we get on. But how will you fair? Have a go at our simple Digital Declutter Challenge with a group of friends and let us know how you get on by tweeting us at @LOVESPACEUK or messaging us on Facebook and Instagram.