The key to time management isn’t really managing your time, it’s managing your efforts. We are bombarded with so much digital data, it’s easy to get overwhelmed keeping up with email, social media, videos and more. You can make the most of your efforts by focusing your time and energy on information that truly matters to you.
The internet is a wonderful tool and great source of entertainment but it can also quickly become an unfulfilling distraction.
Chances are there’s something else you’d really rather be doing if you gave it some thought. You might find another activity far more gratifying.
Simplifying your digital life gives you the opportunity to do what you really want to do such as exercising more, preparing healthier meals, spending quality time with loved ones, and making progress on your goals.
Let’s discuss a few ideas to declutter your digital life. By spending your energy where it’s important to you, and minimizing wasted time and distractions on activities that aren’t important to you.
Are these activities consistently adding to your happiness?
Joining every new social media platform is a great way to waste a lot of time and energy you could be using to pursue your goals and dreams. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, etc.! No one can keep up with them all, so pick one or two that truly interest you and spend your time there.
In addition to reducing the number of social media website you visit, limit the time you spend on these platforms. Decide how often you want to check in with these platforms and stick to it! Once to three times a day is usually enough to catch up on photos, news, and videos without sacrificing something else in your life.
When you do sit down in front of your computer or tablet, limit the length of time you spend browsing. Try setting an alarm to alert you when it’s time to log off and do something productive instead!
“Friends” That Aren’t Really Friends
Do you add every person that sends you a friend request on Facebook? Do you follow back everyone that follows you on Twitter?
Before accepting yet another friend request from someone that isn’t an important person in your life ask yourself why you’re adding them. Do you want to stay in contact with an old friend? By all means add them. Are you adding them simply because you feel guilty rejecting their request? Perhaps it’s time to reconsider accepting their “friendship”.
You can’t please everyone, so choose the people that are most important to you and focus your attention on those people. Stay in contact with those people that enrich your life in some way or another.
Multiple Open Tabs
Do you surf the web with 2 or more tabs open in your browser? How much attention are you really paying to the tab you’re working in? Are you fully enjoying the page you’re currently viewing?
Choosing to work in just one tab at a time allows you to be mindful and effective in your online activities instead of getting sucked in to page after page after page.
Giveaways and Freebies
Very few things in life are truly free. When you participate in giveaways for a chance to win a prize, you’re actually working for that prize whether you win it or not.
A simple “like” of a Facebook page, follow on Twitter, or email sign-up seems like a no-brainer, but companies really aren’t giving away something for nothing. Now they have your contact information so they can market and promote their business directly to you.
An email here and a status update there may not seem like much, but every time you spend energy on something you don’t truly care about, you’re diverting your focus and attention from something that does matter.
Is the prize even something that will actually add value to your life, or will it be one more thing cluttering up your life? If the prize is useful to you, do you fully support the company sponsoring the giveaway?
There are many ways to get on an email subscription list- some emails subscriptions you signed up for, and others are the result of ordering a product or service from a website and automatically being added to their list.
Whether you directly signed up for a subscription or were automatically subscribed, ask yourself if it’s an email you really want to get. When you see a new message in your inbox are you interested to open the email, or do you delete it unread? Take 15 seconds now to unsubscribe from any email lists that don’t consistently interest you. You’ll save yourself up to 520 seconds, or 8.67 minutes, per subscription per year! (Here’s the math on that: 10 seconds per weekly email to scan and delete, times 52 weeks per year.)
While you’re clearing out the digital clutter, take a look at the websites you regularly visit and ask yourself if these websites motivate and inspire you. Wouldn’t you rather enrich your life with positive and healthy messages that promote your best life?
There are many humor websites that are very funny, but the laugh comes at someone else’s expense. Promoting condescending, belittling, and hostile attitudes towards others, these websites can negatively influence your life experience when you find that attitude carries over into your daily life. What kind of life do you want to have? Align your digital activities with your core values.
Simplifying your digital life creates space for purposeful and meaningful living. Use the internet as a tool that works for you, not against you. A thoughtful evaluation of your online activity can help you focus your energy and create a life you love!
I love your comments! What areas of your digital life need simplifying? What other ways do you declutter your digital life?
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