Managing your photos, privacy settings, and all of that endless email can feel like a part-time job. It can be overwhelming to keep up with everything—from work to shopping to your social life—that now takes place on-screen. But with a few tricks, you can turn that digital chaos into a smoothly running system. One key ally: AAA. The same club that helps you with car troubles, insurance questions, and travel plans can also help you clear the digital clutter. That means more time to spend on what matters—online or off.
1. Simplify, simplify, simplify.
Joshua Becker, author of The Minimalist Home, offers five bits of advice for decluttering your digital world: Remove as many icons from your desktop and home screens as possible. Uninstall software you don’t need. Turn off all notifications. Delete unnecessary files, photos, and apps. Put only your most crucial apps on your phone’s home screen; put the rest in folders on a second screen.
2. Shrink your to-do list.
Just as utilities and other services offer automatic bill payment, AAA offers Automatic Renewal for your Membership. You won’t have to worry about getting caught without your AAA Member benefits—one less thing to deal with. Sign up for AAA auto renewal.
3. Do email better.
We’re all subject to the tyranny of the email in-box. It fills and refills itself relentlessly, letting other people’s agendas control our time and attention. To get a better handle on your in-box, make frequent use of your email app’s Unsubscribe and Report Spam buttons. Then develop a filing system—Gmail’s labels are straightforward and easy to learn—that will automatically sort your messages as they come in. Finally, use apps such as MailTime and Boomerang to declutter your in-box and simplify communication.