After an almost never-ending winter, spring is finally here. And besides the upcoming flowers, slightly warmer weather and little green leaves, it’s also time for the well-known spring clean. One mistake most of us make is that we focus on our physical space only, even though we spend a lot of time in our online space too. This is why I listed my online spring clean below for you to follow!
Social Media is probably my biggest Online Space to clean – and oh boy it took me a while! It has made such a big impact on the way I see and use social media now and it’s helped me feel on the same page with my accounts.
- Twitter – Oh twitter, where to start. Across two accounts (one professional for my writing and personal stuff and one purely for my blog) I have somehow managed to post over 15K tweets. Step one of my Twitter Declutter was to tackle those tweets. My professional account still has tweets from over five years ago when I was going through a pretty difficult period of my life. Let’s be honest, that shouldn’t be on the internet anymore for everybody to see. I used a programme called Tweet Archieve Eraser. You can select what tweets you want to delete and BOOM, gone! Managed to cut down to a reasonable 2K tweets and it feels so much better.
Step two was to go through my following list. I unfollowed every account that was inactive, didn’t interest me anymore or simply gave me bad vibes.
Step three was to go through my DM’s and delete all conversations that are now irrelevant.
- Instagram – Instagram was very similar to Twitter. I deleted some pictures I didn’t feel happy about anymore, cleaned up my following list and went through my inbox to get rid of any unwanted messages.
- Facebook – Facebook was probably the biggest job. I started by going through my photos and deleted those I wasn’t happy with anymore. I also made sure to untag myself in less charming photos my friends tagged me in over the years. My timeline was next. Considering I’ve been on FaceBook since 2011, there was a lot of useless statuses to delete… And last but not least, the friend list. I love how Facebook allows you to stay in contact with so many people you would forget about otherwise, but in those 800 “friends” I had in my friend list there were definitely some that I didn’t want to see on my timeline anymore – so goodbye!
- Folders – Easier said than done, but organizing your emails into folders has been such a lifesaver for me. I like having my emails organized, but always thought it was a job too big to start. Once I started, it turned out to be a lot easier than I thought! Create folders that link in with what emails you think are important enough to keep and delete all other emails.
- Subscriptions – I don’t know about you but whenever I get an email from a subscription list I don’t really want to be part of anymore (or never signed up for), I delete them instantly. And delete them again, and again, and again. Time to unsubscribe from all the lists you don’t want to be part of anymore!
My laptop is basically my life – I use it every day. Which makes it even more important to keep it organized.
- Desktop – Your desktop is probably the easiest thing to clean, which is why I started with it. I deleted all the icons that I don’t use often and organized them into two little rows with icons I do use. After that I selected a new screensaver and ta-da, done!
- Programmes – A good second step for your laptop spring clean is to uninstall all programmes you do not use anymore. I certainly still had games and software installed on my laptop that I didn’t even know about anymore. Uninstalling those not only created a lot of space on my laptop, it also made it work a lot faster.
- Photos/Videos – Another big job, but very rewarding. I always dump my photos onto my laptop or the cloud every now and then, but it’s a warzone. After going through all my photos and deleting those that were blurry or simply bad, I organized them into years. Afterwards I made sure to back them up on my cloud, just in case anything happens to my hard drive.
- Documents – Even seen documents named “akskfjakf”? My laptop was full of them. It’s bad, I know! Step one was to go through all my documents, deleting those that I didn’t need anymore and renaming those that I do need. Step two was to organize them into folders. College documents, university documents, important documents, writing, my blog, etc.
- Bookmarks – I like saving websites for “just in case” moments that never really happen. To make my laptop feel new again I went through all the bookmarks on my Google Chrome and only kept those which were still relevant.
Another online space that I frequently visit; my phone. We wake up with them and go to sleep with them.
- Apps – My phone was running out of space which made step one very easy: delete all apps that I don’t use. Step two was to organize the apps that I do use. Main apps on the first page, social media / lifestyle / travel and photography apps on the second and games on the third. It took some getting used to, because I changed the location of the apps on my phone, but it feels less cluttered now.
- Photos – After transferring all photos and videos onto my laptop, I deleted a bunch on my phone. I wanted to keep as many happy memories as photos on my phone so I can look back at them whenever I want to, but there were so many photos that didn’t need to be there.
- Messages – Once again, a pretty easy one. I went through my Imessage, whatsapp and Facebook message to delete all messages that weren’t relevant anymore. It cleared up a lot of space on my phone!
Your Online Appearance
Your online appearance is important! Everybody can just google someone’s name and find out a lot – A LOT – of things about you, especially if you don’t keep an eye out for it yourself. These are the things I did in order to get control over my online appearance.
- Google your name – Future employers or clients will most likely throw your name in a search engine and see what pops up. If things pop up that you would rather keep hiden, find out how to delete it. I came across multiple accounts on websites I’d made as a teenager and forgot about – I closed those accounts and deleted them.
- Facebook – Even after cleaning up my Facebook, I decided to turn the account private. Even if it comes up high in my google search, people can’t access my full profile unless they’re my Facebook friends.
- Be careful – Going through these searches made me realise how careful you need to be with what you share online. It’s definitely been a big eye opener for me and I will be a lot more careful about what I post, comment and share.
It’s a long list, but after having gone through it myself I feel so much better about my online space. I hope it’s helpful! Let me know what online space you’re doing to clean out next!