Updated: Feb 10
When someone asks you to visualize clutter, most people envision a physical space that has every piece of furniture covered in piles of clothes, an endless amount of items on the floor, and stacks of boxes that have not been opened in decades.
What about the endless number of icons filling your computer's desktop? Or the thousands of unread emails sitting in your inbox? No? Don't worry, you're not the only one!
Just like that room full of items, your everyday electronic devices like laptops, tablets & cellphones can quickly fill with useless clutter, Those unused applications you have taking up storage on your phone, or those uncategorized photos, are what's known as digital clutter. They can create the same frustrations & stress that physical clutter does in your home.
Professional Organizers like myself have a variety of specialties to help with Digital Organization. Some of these categories include file share management, email/inbox clean-up, electronic device clean-up, and digitizing both photos and files. I will explore each of these in more detail over the coming weeks, but for now, it is important to know that digital organizing is a robust service that can be tailored to meet your individual needs & comfort level with technology,
Just like a room in your home, purging those spam emails, unused applications, & duplicate photos creates an opportunity to restructure & refocus your attention on what matters most.
Why is Digital Organization Important?
Now that we have a sense of what Digital Organization is, let's talk about why it's important to manage your virtual space.
A key message to remember is that virtual clutter is still clutter. Even though you can't physically see it, the impact is strong.
Prolonged exposure to the virtual clutter raises anxiety levels and could lead to important appointments or documents being misplaced/forgotten, costing you money and time in the long run.
It may not feel like it, but having to consistently traverse a cluttered device has the same type of long-term effects as a physical space in your home. When items are categorized and have a purpose or place, you feel both happy and calm. Updating the calendar on your phone with the latest information will go a long way in improving your mental health.
When it comes to emails, having to sift through the junk to find the important files in a hurry can cause stress and anxiety, or even have severe real-world consequences. It's bad enough to lose an email about some fun activity or personal connection, but even worse to lose an email about an important job offer or a bill you need to pay. Cleaning it up might feel unproductive, but it's nothing compared to how unproductive and stressful it can be to be constantly "playing catch-up" with your inbox. Taking the time to identify a simple process to easily find what you need allows your brain to focus so you can get more done & feel accomplished with your day's work.
Last, but certainly not least, digital organizing is a great solution to help both the environment and save physical space in your home. Making the transition to "paperless" for bills, statements, or even magazine subscriptions is great for saving trees, not to mention the space on your kitchen table! And as for saving space, Seniors who are looking to downsize/rightsize their homes and their belongings may consider hiring a Professional Organizer to digitize & then organize their family photos to reclaim precious storage space.
When considering addressing the clutter in your life, make sure to not overlook the digital world as well. As a Professional Organizer, I've decided to combine my records management & organizing skills to create a variety of personalized options for digital clean-up depending on the requirements and skill level of my clients.
Identifying ways to clear, clean, categorize, organize & maintain your devices or consulting with clients to help create simplified systems & reclaim space go a long way in both organizing & embracing the digital world.
Ready to get started?
So am I! Please check out my digital organizing services page to learn more!
Fill out the form here to arrange your free 30-minute consultation with me, a Certified Professional Organizer, today!
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About the Author: Brittany Smith lives in Ottawa, Canada with her husband and feline furbaby Zoey. She is a Certified Professional Organizer, Owner, and Founder of Control the Chaos, a Professional Organizing business that provides personalized in-home, virtual and digital organizing services aimed at transforming anyone's chaos into calm.