Time for a Digital Cleanse

Hey, Social Media Campers! I’m taking over the #SMCamp blog today to give you a sneak peek of my upcoming Social Media Camp 2016 presentation.

The Digital Cleanse

The Digital Cleanse is partly about mindset, a philosophy, if you will, that empowers the individual to use technology with purpose. It’s also about practical tips and techniques to declutter your data and organize your digital life.

Just to be very clear, my version of digital cleanse is NOT going cold turkey and giving up all your gadgets and social accounts. Rather, it’s a way to craft a digital lifestyle that suits your needs and interests without having the technology take over your life.

Overloaded

After 25 years on the Internet, I had an unwieldy amount of data. I was storing thousands of photographs, work files, old presentations, draft writing projects and, for some unknown reason, a raft of leftover university essays. I had files stored on multiple hard drives, two mobile devices, several server back-ups and still more in the cloud on Dropbox, iCloud and WDHeadshots-259Google Drive. Add to that 450 social network accounts, 700+ apps and a plethora of tech toys and you can see I was in dire need of a digital intervention. Maybe you can relate?

Over the last two years, my digital overload coincided with family circumstances that had me deeply involved with eldercare. More often than not, I was in places and situations where neither a laptop nor a mobile phone were appropriate. And I had only my cellular data plan to gain access to the Internet.

This forced off-line time made me realize I needed to be even more efficient and organized when I could be online. Professionally, I needed to write and share with purpose. I also had to be conscious about using it for leisure. I further realized that I loved the freedom of precision control of when I would use technology. I became more efficient in how I do things while simultaneously reconnecting with my family and friends.

Accidental Discovery

My digital cleanse was a lot of accidental discovery. I unfollowed thousands of people on Twitter.  I closed social network accounts. I reorganized my family photos. I consolidated my professional files. I turned off notifications. I reevaluated my response time. I focused on my loyal friends, fans and followers. I decided I needed to write more.  Lots more.

All of these actions and dozens more combined in a perfect storm of digital serenity. I am in control of my digital life. I know where to find my data. I’m confident that the world will continue to turn if I fail to read every last status update my friends post. Upon reflection, I’m now able to share what I did and why. I’ll share what I’ve learned for the first time in my presentation at Social Media Camp 2016.

I’m optimistic that The Digital Cleanse will strike a chord with Social Media Camp attendees. My last SMC presentation was five years ago. The 200+ folks in that crowd are still one of my favourite audiences ever!

Have we met?

One last thing before I sign off.  Have we met? I hope so and I look forward to connecting online and getting reacquainted in person at Social Media Camp 2016.  If we haven’t met yet, please reach out online and come say hello during the conference. I’d love to get to know you. I look forward to hearing your stories and experiences.

Angela Crocker

Angela Crocker helps businesses communicate. She’s a writer, a teacher and an information organizer. Trained as both a business writer and a technical writer, Angela draws on her twenty years of business experience in marketing, fundraising, entrepreneurship, leadership and teaching. A published author, Angela’s first book was The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Creating a Social Network followed by The B4 Plan, an audiobook about creating business plans co-written with Kimberly Plumley and Peggy Richardson. She is currently writing her next book, The Content Planner. On a personal level, Angela collects Star Wars novels, adores choral music and doodles with fine art supplies.

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