I have been spending the past two weeks *seriously* cleaning out the clutter. I mean *seriously*. I’ve gotten off multiple mailing lists, unsubscribed from as many email lists, cancelled out of multiple memberships, and done a lot of "clearing the decks" for this next quarter.
What I have noticed, so far, is that I feel better- it’s great to work at my desk without being threatened by an avalanche of papers. Even better, though, has been this feeling that I’m "starting from scratch" or getting a chance to "start over." I realized that many of the memberships and communities I had been part of where not really serving me well (my fault.) I wasn’t logging in often enough, wasn’t using the services, and, generally, was just paying each month for services I wasn’t benefiting from.
It has felt great, though a bit strange, to do this kind of "hack and slash" through all my memberships and subscriptions- but it has also felt really liberating at the same time. I feel like I’ve given myself a chance to rethink my strategy and approach, and to seek out only those resources which I will actually benefit from.
Periodically, it’s important to take stock of where you are spending your two main resources: money and time. Even though it may not take much time to delete a bunch of emails; over a few months, the "few minutes here and there" does add up. I have magazines I no longer read, and, rather than waiting for the subscriptions to end, I went ahead and canceled out of some of them early.
This whole process has prompted me to really think about how I want to spend my time, and where I want to devote my energy. I think this kind of re-evaluation is very valuable, and might assist you, too.
If you are spending a lot of time or money in resources you aren’t using (whether these be membership sites, magazine subscriptions, email newsletters), it might be wise to clear out the clutter so you can regain some focused clarity.
You can start small: unsubscribing from just three lists this week, and three again next week, and so on. Or, if you want to really shake things up, you can do what I did: unsubscribed from five sites each day for the past two weeks. (Why I was on so many sites in the first place is the subject for another day.) Anyway, the decrease in email has been immediate and noticeable. It’s actually given me some time and space to contemplate new things!
If you could benefit from a bit more focused clarity, start by clearing out the clutter. Get rid of the old energy to make way for some of the new.