You spend most of the year collecting things–things that you need and things that you don't need–and rarely does it ever cross your mind to go back over what you've gathered unawares and clean house. So, as it turns out, life gets messy. In some areas more than others.
If you want to start 2016 with a clean slate, turn your eye to these five areas of your life. They're the ones that tend to get the most unkempt, and they're also the ones we tend to ignore all the damn time.
Your smartphone is the digital version of your life. And it falls victim to the same fate that befalls our tangible life: It's easier to make a mess than to clean up. Take five minutes to go through all of the apps and folders on your phone and purge the ones you haven't used in a year.
I feel like streamlining our wardrobes was the collective goal of almost everyone in 2015, but how many of us actually got it done? (I didn't. Not like I wanted to.) Consider this your official kick in the pants to start the big closet cleanout of your dreams.
I pulled a bottle of salad dressing out of my fridge yesterday that expired in 2012. Don't be like me. One at a time, take out every bottle and ambiguously-labeled food storage container in the fridge and decide whether it's still edible or needs to be tossed.
Your Bank Account or Credit Card
Specifically, take a look at your automatic debits. Subscription fees and other recurring payments pull funds out of your account without you really feeling like you're spending money. Take an inventory of those automatic payments and decide what you still think is worth the cash (Spotify, Netflix) and what isn't (the cloud storage you should be getting for free now).
If you use a digital calendar on your phone or computer, you may have unknowingly collected years and years worth of useless appointments and reminders. Whittle everything down to the essentials–only the dates you need to keep and the birthdays you want to remember. While you're in there, add whatever travel dates or fun plans you have coming up–that's the best way to get your year started off with happy thoughts.
What areas of your life need a good comb-through every once in a while?