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How to Let Go of Smartphone Clutter

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Smartphones have a lot of places to hide clutter. It's worth finding and removing the clutter so that your phone can serve you in better ways.

1) Let's go through the contacts. Look through the names for people that you haven't called or texted in over a year. It can be sooner if you know you no longer need their info. Begin deleting these contacts. If you find yourself having a hard time letting go of people who are no longer in your life, think of it this way: they are gone in form, now you can complete it by letting go of their names.

You also might notice a person that you are still in contact with whose presence agitates or drains you. I'll be talking in future blog posts about clutter busting people from our lives. For the moment, reflect on your relationship with this person. Is there anything you need to express to them? If you have expressed it already, do you still want to be in relationship with this person?

2) Let's take a look at your apps. Sometimes we'll download an app and either not use it, or just use it once or twice. You may say, "But I want to use it." I have found that the best gauge for whether something is part of your life or not is if you're actually using it. Trust your behavior.

3) If your cell phone has web access, go through your bookmarks and simply delete any you no longer use.

4) What about the phone itself? Our cell phones are mini-computers. It's like taking the office with us in our pocket. They can be great at particular times. But we do ourselves a favor by taking cell-phone-free moments. When you are heading out, and you find yourself grabbing your phone, stop and ask, "Would I be OK if I didn't take my phone with me at this time?" I do this for myself and find a great peace of mind in being out and about without the phone.

5) What about old cell phones? Many of my clients still have their old deactivated cell phones. Old unused electronics have a way of sucking energy out of a space. I would recommend donating these.

6) What about getting a new phone? We're encouraged by the cell phone companies to buy the latest version of their phone. They make ownership sound life changing. And it would be exciting to own it for about a week. But what if you kept using your current phone instead? It's still a good phone. It takes care of your needs. Plus, you end up not spending any money.

Please feel free to share your experiences with clutter busting smartphone clutter. You inspire people when you share.

Brooks Palmer is the author of Clutter Busting: Letting Go of What's Holding You Back (New World Library, 2009) and Clutter Busting Your Life: Clearing Physical and Emotional Clutter to Reconnect With Yourself and Others (New World Library, 2012). To schedule an over-the-phone clutter busting session, go to