Another Slant on Purging Clutter (Digital)

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By now, you must be living under a rock if you haven’t heard about Marie Kondo’s innovative KonMari Method to help people clear out clutter in their homes (and offices); she’s published two best-selling books on the topic, and now has a wildly popular series on Netflix entitled “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo”. Studies have shown that reducing clutter in our homes and environments leads to reduced anxiety levels, enhances relationships, and even increases productivity. But beyond throwing out books, clothes, furniture and other sentimental items you’ve been hanging on to in your living space, have you considered the psychic weight of the clutter that lives in your computer and on your smartphone?

Over the years, I’ve casually observed that some people keep thousands (or tens of thousands) of e-mails in their Mail folders on phones and laptops; whatever happened to the notion of “In Box Zero”? I recently purged a boatload of dated e-mails from my own system, and in tandem, deleted literally thousands of contacts in my Address Book — many of whom were people I didn’t know, had lost touch with, some who were toxic, and many others who were deceased (!). Not only did this exercise free up tons of space on my devices, but it somehow felt incredibly liberating emotionally to know longer (literally) carry the weight of all this useless info around any longer. I’m not sure why more of us don’t take the time to clear the clutter on our devices routinely, but it sure feels good. I recommend you give it a try for yourself and see if lightening your load in that way doesn’t translate to doing so elsewhere.

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