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Category Archives: creating clarity challenges

The October Tech Decluttering Challenge…Now What?

October was dedicated to cleaning up my tech clutter.  All things related to my computers and my desk were the target of my scrutiny.  What I didn’t plan on were 2 surprise visits to Wisconsin to visit my 16 year-old daughter who’s in a one-semester boarding school.  I spent roughly the first two weeks of October away from my computer.

Don’t get me wrong, I had a BLAST!

But I didn’t get as much done as I wanted to with decluttering my computer, and this is a really important area for me to get under control.

I’ve only accomplished about half of what I set out to do and it’s already made a huge difference.

In other words–I don’t want to quit yet.

After decluttering 500 objects from my home I was a little surprised that I didn’t feel a big difference in my living spaces.  I went really deep and tried to identify where I was still feeling “cluttered” in my home and I came up with 3 key areas that just needed some elimination and organization.

  • paper clutter-files, books, magazines, art word, receipts, and general piles of white stuff.  You can read more about this category here, and here.
  • technical clutter-emails, documents, unread books/PDF’s, address books, favorites/bookmarks bars….More information can be found here, and here.
  • unfinished business-all those things that I mean to do…one day, half done projects, pictures to frame, craft ideas…(this one is a particularly long list!)

The Choice

The fact of the matter is that I’m feeling huge relief dealing with all this tech clutter.  I spent a few days this past week working really hard to take care of my list but I was feeling…well, rushed and overwhelmed. I was being mean to myself just because I had 2 wonderful trips and being mean to myself is NOT the point of this whole thing!  I’m trying to be nice to myself and make things work for me instead of the other way around.  So do I just move on to the next category of decluttering or finish what I started?

The Decision

I’ve decided to spend the first two weeks of November finishing up my tech declutter the way I want to, and without being mean to myself!  I’m giving myself to November 16th.  The fact is that there is a great deal of cross-over between my paper clutter, my tech clutter, and all my unfinished business.  There were papers I was keeping that would be better stored on the computer, there are books on my devices that are unread (books were part of my paper clutter but some are on the computer or iPad,) and there are projects on the computer that I’ve wanted to complete for a long time which could easily fall into the unfinished business category.

I realized that if I let my tech clutter remain it would just fall into the unfinished business category anyway.

Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today. -Thomas Jefferson

Tech Clutter Clarity Challenge, continued!

The Plan

  • Until November 16th I’m continuing with my decluttering my computers/iPad.
  • From November 16th until December 15th I’m interjecting a new area to gain some clarity–The Holidays!
When we cleaned out our attic, the one thing we didn’t take down and go through were our holiday decorations.  I had said we should take everything down and go through it all but my husband suggested that we just put it off until the holidays and then go through them when we have them down anyway.  I agreed, much easier that way don’t you think?  Anyway, it occurred to me that our Halloween decorations and Thanksgiving/fall decorations are out right now and soon Christmas will be coming down.  Why not take a closer look at all of that before the end of the year and they are all packed away again?
Yup! I’m going to take a good hard look at our holiday traditions and decorations and see what stays and what goes!
There are a whole lot of expectations and sentiment surrounding our holidays. How many of your traditions and decorations are still meaningful or even fun for you?
So if you’ve been working on your tech/desk clutter, or wanted to, I’m dedicating a couple more weeks to doing just that.  Then, I’m taking a close honest look at my holiday items and activities to see if they still fit who I am now.  After December 15th I’m just relaxing and enjoying the holidays.
Of course my unfinished business will have to remain unfinished until the new year.
But I’m thinking, that might be the perfect way to start the new year. 😉  Are you with me?



2 Responses to The October Tech Decluttering Challenge…Now What?

  1. […] week Kel and I talked about her decision to extend her Tech Clutter Challenge. I personally was all for her doing that. She was enjoying what she was getting out of it, and I […]

  2. carolburris says:

    I’m with you on this one, as it will be three and a half weeks that I’ve been gone. In fact, I’ll probably give myself all of the month of November. :)

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…so what are YOU waiting for?

Life is full to the brim of waiting.  We all have to wait for things, usually on a daily basis. We wait: when calling a business to get to the point in the queue to be able to speak to a “real” person at the grocery check-out in heavy traffic in security check points atContinue Reading

One Response to …so what are YOU waiting for?

  1. carolburris says:

    Having portable craft projects in small, easy to grab and go bags, and keeping some e-books on my PDA are two ways that I deal with waiting. Also wearing headphones for those long phone calls gives me free hands to do things, like organizing and decluttering.

    I’m doing the same thing about deciding now what items are worth moving when DH retires, sometime in the next 2-4 years, so that when the time comes I’m ready to pack and go. Makes not living in a part of the country where I wish to be easier.

    And each little step feels good and makes the next one easier to take.

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Creating Clarity Challenge update

At the beginning of the month, Kel posted about the October Creating Clarity Challenge, which is tackling our tech clutter. I thought I’d give you a glimpse at how I’m working through it, and what I’ve realized because of it. That is an actual screenshot of my desktop, taken in mid-September. Nice and tidy, isn’tContinue Reading

2 Responses to Creating Clarity Challenge update

  1. Nin-Carol says:

    I so hear you. And I’m also making small steps to get things better arranged for me. After all, I spent an hour and a half looking for something Tuesday – which, by the way, I found last night – and then some time this morning looking for something I saw while looking Tuesday – and still can’t find today.

    That being said, I have organized some of those things from Tuesday so there is a net gain – and a lot of motivation to make it happen!

    My electronic mess is still a mess, though. Not managing this challenge very well – yet.

  2. Tracy says:

    I am pretty certain I won’t be “done” when October ends, either. My mom is coming out for 10 days and I’ll be darned if I’m spending a lot of time on my computer while she’s here! But I figure that 1) anything we do this month means we end it in better shape than we started, and 2) every little thing done now is one less thing we’ve put off until that never-happens “later”.

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October’s Creating Clarity Challenge: Tackling Tech Clutter

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you want to make a change. How is it that we can be so busy each day, but still feel we haven’t accomplished what we really wanted to do at the end of the day? For me, a big help in overcoming overwhelm has been to eliminate some of the things that don’t really matter so much. Continue Reading

4 Responses to October’s Creating Clarity Challenge: Tackling Tech Clutter

  1. Nin-Carol says:

    Yes, I’m in, at least for the first half of the month. The second half I’ll be covered in granddaughter love and I’m not even taking my computer with me. A jump drive that my husband assures me will let me get my e-mail from their computers and my tablet which is mostly just my e-book reader, but not my laptop. That will be a challenge in itself! But I’m all for some group encouragement to make this lovely, helpful devise even more helpful.

    • Kel Wilson says:

      Hey, half a month is still a lot of clearing on the computer! And besides, there is NOTHING better or more important than granddaughter love! So glad you’re joining me on my little quest.

  2. Janie says:

    I’m in. I actually have been kind of doing this, but your more organized than me and I need a kick in the butt to actually finish it! I love your projects! I am behind on the paper declutter (and Lord knows I have tons) and God help me, I can NOT seem to let go of books.(mine are mostly cook books and most hold memories for me even if I only made one recipe from them! Just looking at the covers jogs my memories!)
    But getting back to this month…I have let my blog GO because of so much computer clutter…it’s all i can do to sort through it each day and seem to run out of time to here’s hoping I can steam line my computer so I can get back too blogging again!

    • Kel Wilson says:

      That is exactly why I thought this would be good for me too. It’s so easy to say, “later” when it comes to stuff on the computer for me. Focusing on that for one month will probably not “fix” or “take care” of everything but it will be a whole lot more organized than it is now.
      Maybe you can just focus on your workspace papers and see if that improves this month. Trust me when I say that I did not take care of all the paper issues in my house. I just know that it’s better than when I started and that’s good enough for now.
      So glad your joining! And here’s to your blog being rekindled by Nov. 1!

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