I sat down a while ago and decided to take a good, hard look at all of my monthly subscriptions, especially the software ones. Over the years, I’ve added more and more of these types of subscriptions without really realizing how much I was paying out every month. So let’s just say that I was more than a bit shocked when I tallied it all up!
Some of my subscriptions include:
– Web hosting
– Cloud storage
– Learning Piano Apps (Piano Marvel and Playground Sessions)
– Virus and Malware protection
– Backup services
– Writing Tools (such as Grammarly, ProWritingAid)
– Streaming Services (Hulu, Netflix, HBO Max, Disney, Apple TV+)
– Retail services (Book of the Month Club, Dollar Shave Club, Audible, Kindle Unlimited, Amazon Prime, Costco Membership)
But most shocking of all was the number of software subscriptions that I’d amassed over the years. I hadn’t realized just how many of them I was continuously paying for. The ones that stood out were Ulysses, Todoist, 1Password, DayOne, Buffer, Microsoft 365, Adobe, and TextExpander, just to name a few of them.
Identifying all of them was only the first step. The next step involves elimination, and that’s what I plan on doing in the coming days. I’m going to seriously evaluate every one of these pesky monthly charges to see which ones I can remove and which ones I can replace with non-subscription alternatives. For instance, I own versions of Scrivener and IAWriter, both of which can replace Ulysses, a subscription text/markdown editor. I also own standalone image editing programs such as Affinity Photos and Pixelmator, which can probably replace Adobe Photoshop (although that would mean getting rid of Lightroom, which I’m not quite sure I’m ready to do yet).
I’ve already begun the culling process, and my wallet is already feeling way lighter. I eliminated a couple of monthly software subscriptions for apps that I rarely used. I’ve also moved all my cloud files to one service rather than multiple ones (not quite sure how I ended up with so many). As a result, I’m finding it much faster to find what I’m looking for (I could never remember on which cloud drive some files were located) as well as to manage.
Another decision I’ve made is regarding my entertainment streaming services. Do I really need to have access to six different streaming services simultaneously, especially given that I rarely watch TV? Yeah, that’s a huge, resounding no! So what I’ve decided to do is subscribe to only one or two at a time, during which I will watch any shows/movies that I want to see. Then, once I’m caught up, I’ll unsubscribe and subscribe to the next service with shows I want to see. This way, I’m only paying for what I’m using. I’ve already eliminated two of them — the rest are yearly subscriptions, which I’ll probably convert to monthly when they come due, and again, I’ll only subscribe to one at a time.
Of course, there are certain apps/services that I cannot or will not discontinue, especially those that are essential to my business, such as Web Hosting services and writing tool apps. I’m still undecided about Ulysses, my main short-form writing app. Though I have other apps that do the same thing, I always seem to come back to Ulysses. This is the app in which I do all my daily writing. Perhaps I’ll spend some time evaluating other writing apps to see if I can find a replacement that works for me. What bothers me most about many of these apps is that access to your files ends when your subscription terminates, and more and more, I’m finding that utterly unacceptable. So those will definitely be the first to go.
So yeah, subscription fatigue is real, and I’m happy I’m finally doing something about it. How about you? Have you attained subscription fatigue yet?
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