Are you a digital hoarder? I know I am. I save news stories to read in Facebook later (and never do), I have an RSS reader with dozens of blogs rolling up just waiting for me to read it and yet, I can never find anything. I just got a new laptop, so it was a great time to do some digital clean up.
Here are 5 things I’ve done this month to free myself from the digital clutter.
Purge Client Files
It’s so rare to go back to a former client files to retrieve anything, so get them off your desktop and file them in Dropbox or somewhere else in the cloud under one folder called Archive. I usually save all work from clients for a year, but delete the email folder for that client after three months.
Save the Good Stuff
Before you go crazy and start deleting, is there one thing or a couple of things that you might use as a sample later on or as a guide to format another clients’ communication need? File it on your desktop in a new file called Samples. I started this about a year ago and it’s made building new powerpoint presentations and sharing templates for editorial calendars or other work so much easier.
I am overwhelmed with the number of stories I should be reading to keep current in my field. For the digital stuff, I roll blogs and news feeds into Feedly into categories that are important to my client work and to my learning. The trick is, to go in and purge the feeds out when you no longer need them. Done with the client in a specific industry? Trim it down.
And all those newsletter subscriptions? If you’re not already using Unroll.me, you’re missing out. IT’s an add on that puts every newsletter to which you subscribe into ONE. DAILY. EMAIL. Since I’m now getting a thousand or more of these things, it’s the only way to get your head above water.
If they are so valuable that you want to save it for later, start a Diigo library and keep them all in one place.
Update your Profiles
Now is a good time to check your Twitter Bio, your “about” section on Facebook and your Linked In headline. I would recommend you get new headshots too, but that would just be crazy talk! (It takes me forever to change out headshots. No good reason)
Check Your Privacy Settings
I almost never do this, but this recent story in the Washington Post with EXACT Instructions on a couple of things made it easy. Took me five minutes. Do it now to clear advertising clutter out of your feeds!