Tag Archive: email


Inbox Invasion


What’s in your inbox? Maybe a question you don’t want to answer, right? Ideally you would want to find correspondence from clients, colleagues, email subscriptions, those you want to learn from and stay connected to, with perhaps an occasional cold call sales proposition. Most find their inboxes overloaded daily and we also find ourselves subjected to being added to lists without signing up, asking to be added or giving our permission. One of my biggest pet peeves.

Recently I found myself in this situation just one-too-many times and followed my usual process by trying to see if I had signed up for their lists and had somehow forgotten. That wasn’t the case. In each instance someone thought it was okay to add me to their list without my permission. One seemed to be shocked about my asking to be removed suggesting that I pass the information along if I didn’t find it to be useful. Seriously?

Okay, so here’s the thing about all that…

Years ago before the “Can SPAM” Act was in place it was commonplace for people building their list to add email addresses of those they met at events to their list. Not that this was ever appropriate at any time mind you, but it was common.

Personally I find this to be quite rude and a poor business practice. This is the virtual equivalent to walking up to someone at an event and shoving your stuff in their face without introducing yourself and having a conversation. Without knowing if they’re your ideal client or even want what you have to offer. Besides being rude, you’re not targeting the people you are a fit for what you do. Is this really how you want to build your business or the reputation you want to create? You’re taking up prime real estate in my sacred space and that’s just not cool.

I prefer to have things worthy of that space in it. Things that will serve me, help me learn and stay connected to those I want to connect with. That’s what your inbox is for. Inbox invasion is just one reason people suffer from email overload. When you clean up your inbox regularly, leave those with poor business etiquette out of the mix, get off the lists that aren’t serving you and keep it that way.

 


Like most people you have an inbox. Tell the truth about it and you’ve got multiple inboxes, right? Hopefully you have multiple virtual mail boxes because it’s your way of separating your business and personal worlds, not because you added them frivolously.

Given the times and the overload of information we each get on a daily basis, people are inundated with email. Most of us receive about 150 emails a day and for many the majority go without being read. This has become the norm and people have come accustomed to being on multiple email lists and part of their regular rhythm is to continue to subscribe to more.

There’s way too much going on that has your inbox (or inboxes) get and stay bogged down and cluttered and this does absolutely nothing for you in regards to staying productive.

  • An average of 150 emails a day
  • Most go unread
  • Staying subscribed to lists that no longer serve you or your interest
  • Missing what you need to have access to

Your inbox deserves better and so do you. Treating your inbox like sacred space means setting a criteria for what is allowed. So now you might be saying, “But where do I start?” because you’ve got 30K emails plus and just can’t see it happening.  You can get there one step at a time and here’s your check list:

  1. Take inventory. What’s there? Emails that haven’t been read, things you kept because of the attachments or other info? If you haven’t read it, delete it and if it’s from a list you subscribed to, get off the list. Chances are you haven’t read much of what they’ve send and won’t. Save any attached documents to your computer, get info into a file and dates into your calendar and delete, delete, delete!
  2. Get off the list. Sort your inbox alphabetically by sender so you can see what you get regularly. You might not even remember who some of those people are, so open one of the emails, scroll to the bottom and unsubscribe from what’s not relevant. If you have a long list of subscriptions, check out Unroll.Me and instantly see all your subscription emails and get rid of what you don’t want. Once you’re done, delete those emails.
  3. Make your list. Now determine the email that you want to allow; what deserves space. Be tough and make sure you can justify why something needs to hit your inbox.
  4. Set up an email tool like SaneBox to keep the order. It will review your email history and habits, keep the unimportant stuff out of your inbox so you can focus on what matters. The unimportant things got to another folder for you to review later. Once you set it up and have a clean inbox, you can clean up the “Sane Later” folder and then do the regular maintenance.
  5. Create supportive habits. Moving forward you need habits to keep your inbox sacred so set times to check email during the day, use folders and filters to send certain emails to designated folders and check them regularly. Download attachments and info you need and delete the email and empty your trash folder daily.

 


Now, you’ve heard me say before that you can’t actually get more time, which is true. You have 1,440 minutes every day and you aren’t going to get any more no matter how hard you wish for or dream of having it. Not to mention the fact that time isn’t real, it’s a concept so you can’t get more of something that doesn’t really exist.

What you can do though is make some steps to get back the time that you’re wasting right now and to make better investments of your time. Click the play button and check out this episode of  Time & Space on Own Your Power Radio. I’m giving you seven ways you can find more time.


WastingTime-ClocksWasteCan-SmallI’m sure there are a few things you can think of right now that are wasting your time every day that you would love to be rid of. Things that have been keeping you from getting it done for quite some time now.  Just how are you wasting your time? I’m going to share a few ways I see entrepreneurs wasting time daily and give you solutions for moving beyond them.

Let’s talk about your day to day experiences. Every day there are so many things going on that if you’re not careful, your day will have control of you and you won’t have a say in the matter. I’m pretty sure you’ve had the experience that I’m talking about. You’ve got a full day, things that keep popping up and you’re trying to maneuver the landscape of the things on your agenda along with interruptions, social media, multiple devices and the challenges you have. That’s quite a mix and of course this is what you want to shift away from, so let me share a few ways that are probably wasting your time and give you some help with those time wasters.

Doing Irrelevant Things– How much time do you give to the mail, social media, accounting tasks, the marketing, etc? Many are focused on these things  instead of the things that generate revenue. If this is where your time is going, you don’t have much of it to give to your expertise so your focus isn’t contributing to your bottom line. Delegate the things that you don’t have to be the one to do so you can focus on what you’re good at and bringing that to your clients.

Being Effective But Not Efficient-You might be doing the right things, but doing them in an inefficient way. Efficiency is doing things the right way and effectiveness is doing the right things. So here the problem is being effective, but not efficient. You’re on track doing the right things, just not going about them in a productive way. I see this a lot when it comes to repetitive tasks. The things that have to be done daily, weekly and monthly. Each time the wheel is reinvented instead of there being a system for said repetitive tasks. The solution here is to document the tasks so that anyone you delegate them to has clear picture of what has to happen. Create templates or forms to support the process if they’re a fit. Save information needed such as login details and have them readily available. These are things that will help streamline the process.

Technology-Technology is changing every day and honestly I think that the more it advances, the more it consumes people. There are our phones, apps, email and social media that for the most part keep people caught up during the day. First off, open your email when you need to check it and don’t make that first thing in the morning. When you’re done, close it and check it again later. Be sure you designate when you’re checking email and stick to it. Use folders and filters to help sort your email or better yet, try a tool like SaneBox that will keep your inbox clean. Create a social media plan and get someone on board to create and make some of your posts or set them up in something like Hoot Suite so you can cut down on the time you give to social media posting. Of course you don’t want to automate everything.

 

Email Overload


E mail concept Modern Laptop andThere are so many people who struggle with inbox woes daily. It’s not uncommon for people to have upwards of 3000 pieces of email in their inbox and a lot of them aren’t even read. Sometimes it seems like there’s just no way to get a handle on it, but I promise you, there is.

Right now, go to your inbox and look to see exactly how many emails are in your inbox. You might cringe, maybe you don’t even want to look, but just go take a peek. You have to know how bad the problem is before you can take steps to resolve it, so go look.

With technology getting better and better and people becoming more reliant upon it and since it’s always readily available, email it seems, is here to stay. So that means that you have to get a grip and gain the upper hand. If you don’t it will be and will stay out of control. An overloaded inbox is a form of electronic clutter and it can get just an out of hand and be just as much of an issue as physical clutter in a space.

So what do you do to start the process of gaining control and eliminating email overload? Go back to your inbox and take inventory. What’s there? Ezines or newsletters you signed up for but haven’t read; emails that you’ve read but kept because they have useful information or attachments that you need?

If there are lists you subscribed to because you wanted particular information and you got it and used it, or didn’t, it’s time to unsubscribe from those lists. If the information is still of value to you, meaning that you can and will use it, save it in a document, bookmark the link or if you use Evernote save it there and keep it moving. Same thing goes for those precious attachments you’ve been holding onto via email. Download them to an appropriate folder and delete the email.

Once those things are gone, look to see what else is there and more importantly WHY it’s there. Get rid of the obsolete things and if there are emails you need to archive, create folders for them and start the drag and drop process. Keep it up until you’ve cleaned it up.

Once you’ve cleaned up your inbox, create some rules for yourself and some new habits. When you check email read, reply, download, archive and delete. Set up filters and related folders for email from lists you want to stay subscribed to so those emails go directly to their designated folders. You can do the same for emails related to particular clients or projects you’re working on. If your inbox is really overloaded it might take a few weeks to get things under control, but it can be done.

 

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