Alignment, Ease, Energy & Flow: productive

The other day I deleted over two dozen apps from my iPhone.

No, not Pokemon GO (haven’t yet caught the craze). These apps were mostly to help me be more productive and informed.

So, am I opting out of productivity? No longer interested in what’s going on in the world?

No on both counts.

Here’s what happened. In preparing for a trip where I need to keep an eye on my data usage, I took a fresh look at how I spend time on my device.

And I felt a combination of sad and annoyed.

Sad at how easily I fall into the trap of clicking on an app on my phone just because it’s there. So instead of people watching or just being for a few minutes while waiting to meet the Love of My Life at a restaurant, I’m on the Feedly app reading blog posts.

And annoyed because I’m the one who originally downloaded the apps. I made a decision (years ago for some, months ago for others) these apps get to have some of my phone’s bandwidth—and more importantly, my attention, time, and energy.

And until the other day, I never revisited whether these apps make sense for the life I want to lead.

Maybe it’s time for a fresh look with intention.

A fresh look with intention made it easy to delete, delete, delete. I tapped on that little vibrating X intuitively. In minutes a screen-full of apps were gone.

But then I got curious about how I’d actually made the decision to delete versus keep. Because dozens of other apps do remain.

In retrospect I crafted these 3 questions that reflect my decision-making process.

  • What’s one thing running in the background of your life that’s not really enhancing you?
  • What’s one thing you feel compelled to keep up with that’s not really adding value to your life?
  • What’s one thing on your radar that’s more a distraction than an intentional area of focus?

While my app purge was the context, I encourage you to apply these questions even more broadly. They’re good for more than just the apps on your phone.

What will you delete?