Digital Declutter Day 18: Cords

Welcome back to the Digital Declutter Challenge. No time like the month of January to clear unwanted items and free space for the upcoming year. Today we will be clearing your drawer or box of cords, cables and chargers.

cords, cables and chargers

Almost every client I work with has a graveyard of cords. Often, these cords are tangled up, unlabeled, and haven’t been used for years.

The first step is to gather all of your cords to a large, clear surface such as the kitchen island or dining room table. Be sure to search throughout your space, as we tend to stash these in a variety of places. Candidates for decluttering today include:

– Phone Chargers

– Game Chargers

– Tablet Chargers

– Computer cables

– Ethernet cords

– Camera cords

– TV cables

– Ear buds and earphones

– Audio/Visual cords

Untangle them and stretch them out in lines on your sorting surface.

The next step is to identify the purpose of each one so you can decide whether or not you still need it. If you have trouble identifying a wire’s purpose, here is a post that gives you a video guide to common household cords.

Odds are that most of the cords and cables you are sorting through today are not being used, and this is why they have ended up in a jumble. However, if you come across any “active” cords, store them near their corresponding devices. In addition, if you come across pieces (e.g. Ethernet cords) that you are keeping to meet a generic future need, label and move these to a designated storage location, such as a clear plastic bin.

The remainder should be sorted into the three categories in your staging area:

  • Dispose (unidentifiable, damaged, belong to a device you no longer own)
  • Donate (good condition, belong to a device you are donating)
  • Sell (good condition, belong to a device your selling)

Cords to be donated or sold should be attached to the corresponding unit with a cable tie, tape, or labeled zip-top bag.


Where do you keep all those extra cords? Does this task seem intimidating or easy?

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