Decluttering in the physical and virtual

There has been so much in the media about decluttering our spaces, living minimally and simplifying our lives. Since I recently left a job and have some free time I started thinking about this and decided to work on decluttering my own space. But I wanted to take it one step further and declutter both the physical and the virtual.

My current focuses are:

  1. Clean out and organize the pantry
  2. Declutter online

Clean out the pantry

I spent the morning checking expiration dates and chucking, if they are expired. I bought some metal baskets from Target and used them to store things like sugar, flour, nuts and other items that come in bags and don’t stand alone so easily. I got about 1/3 of the pantry done.

Image of author’s pantry
Yes, it’s still a work in progress. I need more of those baskets from Target…but it looks better!

Declutter online

I was making the connection that my online presence was adding clutter and stress to my life and the only way to fix that was to take control of it, which meant cutting back on the amount of information I receive. The biggest place online where I receive the bulk of information is through my multiple email accounts, so I took 2 steps to begin the online decluttering process:

1. Disable non-Apple emails from my Apple Mail

I have several emails, many of which are synced with my iCloud account and taking up way too much iCloud space, so I disabled all the non-Apple related emails(I have specific apps I use for those) from my iCloud and then deleted most of my emails. Unfortunately, it didn’t free up as much space as I had hoped, but it’s cleaner and easier to read.

2. Unsubscribe from emails

I also decided to unsubscribe to most of the online retailers. I deleted over 700 emails just from Kohl’s alone. I realized that initially I signed up for these emails thinking I was going to save money with the discounts they send, but it became clear to me that I wasn’t doing anything with the emails and they were just stressing me out and cluttering my online presence, so I decided it was time to remove them by unsubscribing.

It took me more than a couple of hours to unsubscribe and delete, but it was liberating and my emails are much cleaner and easy to tackle.

I’m not completely done with decluttering my online presence, and I don’t think one can ever be completely done as long as we have emails and social media accounts, but I’m definitely heading in the right direction and I’m already feeling more relaxed about it.

I hope to get my pantry done by the end of next week and then I will have to decide what is next on my decluttering task.

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