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31 Jan

Get rid of the old desktop folder

Datum: 2024-01-31 08:10
A person is typing on a laptop with digital icons of documents and folders floating above the keyboard.

Some of us save doc­u­ments on the com­put­er desk­top. It may feel like a good idea because then we can access them eas­i­ly. We then sort of know where they are” all the time. How­ev­er, those who apply this method see all the doc­u­ments they have there simul­ta­ne­ous­ly, even though they actu­al­ly only need to access (and prefer­ably see) one or a few of them at a time.

For you who pre­fer lis­ten­ing to read­ing, this post is also avail­able as an episode of the Done!” pod­cast:

Right in front of us 

If we con­stant­ly see things we do not need at the moment, it might dis­tract us from what we real­ly need to find and work with right now. We see a doc­u­ment and come to think of some­thing relat­ed to that file. It may even strike you that you should have done some­thing with that doc­u­ment already (which is why you put it there in the first place), and you feel bad about not hav­ing done what you were sup­posed to.

One fold­er for all the old stuff — and then anoth­er one 

After a while, it gets a bit messy on the desk­top, so some peo­ple cre­ate a fold­er where they put all the doc­u­ments — pend­ing, just for now — so that the desk­top becomes emp­ty (except for this one fold­er) once again. It feels good. They name the fold­er the old desktop”. 

Time pass­es and they think to them­selves that soon they will take care of the old fold­er. Soon. After a while, they avoid open­ing the fold­er, because they sus­pect it of being filled with a bad con­science — things they should already have tak­en care of. The fold­er hov­ers” over them and drain ener­gy, pow­er, and focus — unnecessarily. 

They are tempt­ed to cre­ate yet anoth­er old desktop”-folder to put every­thing in (to clean up again), but what to name the old fold­er then? The old old desktop”?

It might be tempt­ing, but do not do this.

Instead, do this 

If you can iden­ti­fy with this lit­tle tes­ti­mo­ny from dai­ly life, and if you at present moment have an old desk­top” fold­er, get rid of it this week — in one of the fol­low­ing ways:

  • go through the whole fold­er in one go and trash or move the doc­u­ments to their prop­er places, or
  • allo­cate fif­teen min­utes every day to sort­ing through it until the fold­er is emp­ty, or
  • take ten doc­u­ments a day until you can delete the whole folder.

One less problem 

If you get rid of the old desktop”-folder you now have one less prob­lem hov­er­ing above you all the time. Would you not agree that get­ting rid of such a nui­sance is worth a lit­tle effort?

What is your way?

How do you keep your com­put­er desk­top emp­ty and free from dis­trac­tions? If you have a clever way of keep­ing it emp­ty and clean, please let me know.

(And, have you made sure that your fold­ers are easy to find?)

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