I've had Gmail since around 2005, back when you had to be invited to use it. Salute to the homie W.D. For the past two months, I've been cleaning out my primary Gmail account, getting rid of spam, old newsletters, promotions, and anything that no longer has value for today. Minimalism is reducing my carbon footprint by reducing the storage I waste.
For the past two years, I've been thinking about storage waste. The cloud. The cloud. All these old emails with data taking up unnecessary storage need to go. I know there are apps for it, but email is personal. I want to skim through and hand-select what gets deleted. Plus, apps and websites want you to pay. And using them adds to wastefulness and removes my responsibility and conditioning in the present. If I clean up the past, it reminds me to stay clean in the present. I got time because I've made time.
Sometimes I find old emails from old friends and conversations that remind me of who I've been. I loved ebonics. lol. I've been job searching for forever. I've always valued keeping in touch with people and sharing mutual stories, no matter where I was. Email was all I had when I lived in Buenos Aires. I'm grateful for electronic mail, and I'm hoping to utilize it more to reconnect. Sign-up for my bi-weekly newsletter.
My "Updates" read 6k about three months ago. But once a month, I wake up, clean up the apt a bit use that "cleaning" energy to clear out my Gmail. I listen to music or podcast and dedicate an hour to my minimalist journey. I serach by names, using "[name]" to isolate specific brands or people. I scroll to page 50+ to look at older emails that I've probably let pile up in the past. And once I see something I don't want or need anymore. I search and purge using "Select all."
Below are some emails I was able to purge, and the quantities for the bigger data waster.
- email@example.com (-300ish)
- firstname.lastname@example.org (-42)
- "thank you for applying" (-200)
- "Thank you for your application" (-64)
- "Room for Rent South Beach"
- "Private Room w/ Shared Bath South Beach"
- email@example.com (-100)
- "Private Room & Bath South Beach"
- "Two Private Rooms Available in South Beach"
- "Private Room w/ Bath South Beach"
- "craigslist.org" (-800)
- "teach away"
It ain't much, but it's honest work.
Cheers to less excess.