How You Can Embrace Digital Minimalism

June 15, 2021

 Technology is an important part of our everyday life.

Back in 2007, when the first iPhone - a computer that fitted into the palm of our hands - was unveiled by Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple, was the first sign of technology becoming all-consuming. Suddenly, we did not need to be sitting down at a computer to go online. We could just whip out our iPhone and check our social media, emails, go shopping and find the answer to almost any question that we could ever have. It was a complete revelation.

It has been a great thing, of course, in many ways. It has allowed us to stay in touch with friends and family all over the world, start, run and support businesses from wherever we are in the world and with the pandemic that has gripped the world in 2020 and 2021, has been a lifeline to many. However, as with everything, there is a downside.

A survey found that 24% of adults in the United kingdom check their phone within five minutes of waking up, and 78% use them in the hour before going to bed, potentially disrupting the all-important sleep process. That is not to mention all of the mindless scrolling that we do throughout the daytime. How are we supposed to be living a happy and fulfilling life when we spend our lives looking at a small screen. It can also be a little concerning in terms of our health - our eyes are strained, and there has been a rise in conditions such as repressive strain injury due to tapping and scrolling on phone screens. Many people are also worried about EMF (electromagnetic fields) and their impact on the body. A good quality EMF blocker can help to minimize this if it is something that you are worried about.

While it is virtually impossible to escape the digital world altogether - and nor should we want to as it is now a part of our life - it is possible to embrace digital minimalism. This means only using it for the bare essentials. Here, we take a look at some of the things that you can do to embrace digital minimalism. 


Remove apps and programs from your computer desktop and cellphone

The chances are when you turn on your laptop or computer, your desktop will be full of apps and programs and software, and this clutter is almost instantly overwhelming. Delete them all from your desktop. If you need them, use the spotlight search tool to find them instead. 

The same goes for the apps on your cellphone. Delete all of the apps that you no longer use and if you do use them, consider using the desktop browser version, or hide them all in one folder off the main screen. When you want them, you can use the search option to find them to open.

Have a clear and clean wallpaper

It is all well and good having a lovely photo of your children/dog/beach/any other inspirational background on your cellphone or your computer desktop wallpaper, but it goes completely against minimalism. Keep the pictures to physical photo frames and have a plain, solid color background, preferably as neutral as possible.

Turn off the notifications

So many of us live by our notifications. When it flashes up that we have a new email or a new follower or whatever other notifications you get, we are often compelled to check it there and then. If you do not have notifications switched on, you can’t. Turn them all off, except perhaps for phone calls and text messages and perhaps calendar if you need that. The rest can wait for you to go into the app or program to look.

Turn on ‘do not disturb’.

It is important that your phone does not disturb you throughout the night or when you are trying to relax. Set a time - say 8 pm to 8 am, when only phone calls and messages from certain contacts are allowed through. Anything else can wait until the morning.

Clean out your contact list

There is a good chance that you have all sorts of phone numbers and email addresses stored that you no longer need. They are generally stored ‘in the cloud’, which means when you upgrade your phone they all come with you, and you never have a cull. Any that you no longer need, delete. 

It is important to bear in mind that digital minimalism isn't something you can do once and then forget about. It's all too simple to erase and tidy your digital life in one go, just to start collecting digital detritus again the next day. It is an ongoing process to simplify your mind and your life. 

*contributed post*

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