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Have you ever tried to sync your different contact lists to your iPhone? I made my first attempt about a year and half ago, and let me tell you, it ended in mass frustration. I first tried to sync my google contacts with the phone, and that seemed to go ok, at first. Then I heard about iCloud, and thought, hey, another backup of my contacts, how could I go wrong? When I was then presented with the option to sync my phone with Facebook, I thought, what the heck, I can have all my contacts in one place on my phone, how simple and easy. Right? Wrong!

I am almost ashamed to admit how long it took me to figure this all out, but I’m going to go easy on myself because understanding the inner working of new technology has never been one of my strong suits. I’ve always been of the notion that it should just WORK, bam, easy peasy. So when I started to notice multiple entries for some of my contacts I didn’t really understand. Then I noticed that some of my contacts’ information was in the wrong entry, especially when it came to the email addresses.

I tried merging contacts, I tried deleting the multiples, but the more I messed with it, the more messed up it seemed to be. So I decided to just ignore it – all my contacts were there, sure, they weren’t nearly as organized as I would have preferred, but I could still find them within a reasonable amount of time, and figuring out the technology was more frustrating than just dealing with the disorganization.

A couple months ago I finally did a google search that told me what I needed to know. The gist of the problem was that due to the way the individual fields are set up in google contacts verses how they are set up on the iphone system don’t mesh. I found a number of articles about how to remedy this, however, there was a LOT of work involved, so I decided to move my contacts to iCloud instead. iCloud was set up by Apple and is completely compatible with the iphone.

Don’t forget, before you attempt any kind of remedy on your phone (or computer for that matter), back it up! From there first you must turn off all syncing (this is what was causing the problem when I would delete entries from my phone and then mysteriously they would show up again – the phone was simply syncing back up with all the other systems it was connected to). You can now choose to edit on your phone directly, or turn the iCloud syncing back on, log into iCloud from your computer and edit your contacts that way.

It took me awhile to get my contacts back to where they needed to be, but it’s been worth it to have all my contacts organized again (for the first time in over a year, yikes!). What are your experiences with syncing your contacts? I’d love to hear about your challenges and how you overcame them in the comments below!



Holistic Professional Organizer and Clutter Coach at Synergy Organizing, LLC

©Synergy Organizing 2012

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