Something is wrong. You just can’t face it. It’s your Downloads folder, isn’t it?

Cartoon adapted from The New Yorker

That 1,000 mile gaze comes over you as you the scroll years of long forgotten .zip, .doc, .pdf, .xls, .jpg, et al. downloads and email attachments.

Inexplicably, the cause of your ennui isn’t the vision of what already festers in your downloads folder. Rather, it’s your dread of the toil to come when you must identify, file or delete each item one-by-one.

There, there. QTIPS has a simple solution; change the destination for web downloads and email attachments from the default Downloads folder to your Desktop.

In the future when a web file or email attachment downloads to your computer you’ll see it immediately on your Desktop. Then you’ll:
1. Ask yourself, "What is it? Do I want to keep it?"
2. File it or Trash it accordingly in the moment.

Calm and soft light will surround you. But of course, this won't resolve what to do with your currently festering downloads folder — unless you simply trash everything in it.

Try this middle way instead:
  1. On your Desktop create a folder and name it Dumpster. Drag all items from your festering Downloads folder into Dumpster.
  2. Copy the full Dumpster folder to a USB flash drive. Store the flash drive somewhere accessible in the unlikely event you ever need to retrieve a file.
  3. Remove the Dumpster folder from your Desktop to Trash. Don’t forget to empty Trash.

You’re welcome. You look better already.

Ninja move: Prevent PUP (Potentially Unwanted Programs, a.k.a. malware, malicious software) from installing or reinstalling on your computer by deleting all lingering application and update installers from Downloads folders.

If you ever need to reinstall a legitimate app, download a fresh and safe replacement from its developer.