Tag Archive: inbox


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.

 


SaneBoxIf you’re like most, email might be a bit out of control with hundreds or maybe even thousands of emails, most of them unopened. You have lists you’ve subscribed to sending email and probably some unsolicited items too. They’re coming in so fast you just can’t handle it. You’ve tried hitting your inbox to remedy the overgrown number, but to no avail and if you do get the number down, they come right back at you with what seems to be even more determination.

If you can relate to this, you might want to consider using SaneBox. It’s an add on tool that works with your current email client to keep your inbox from being out of control. You set the rules and it follows them. Gotta love that! It organizes your email and makes sure that you get the important stuff by prioritizing important emails and summarizing the rest. There’s nothing to download and nothing new to learn.

It uses smart filtering and other productivity features live One Click Unsubscribe that lets you drag an email into the “SaneBlackHole” folder, and you’ll never hear from that sender again. To add to the productivity mix, SaneBox notifies you when an email you sent isn’t replied to by a certain time, so you can follow up. Additionally, it allows you to place an email in a Snooze Folder and then SaneBox will place it back in your Inbox when it’s convenient for you. With all these great features, it’s a great solution for ending your inbox insanity. Get more details at the SaneBox website.

 

 


As a society, we waste a lot of things including time. Most of the things we waste we have in excess, but not time.  We each get the same amount of time each day and once it’s gone it’s gone for good.

How much of your time are you wasting?  Do you honestly know where your time is going?  Are you wasting the estimated 2 hours of time that most people waste every day?  That 2 hours every day can add up pretty fast.  The truth of the matter is that most people don’t really know where their time is actually going every day.   So, how do you know you’re wasting a significant amount of your precious time?  Here are a few indicators:

  • Messy desk, cluttered work space, things not filed
  • Not being able to find things
  • Missing, being late for or often rescheduling appointments
  • Arriving to meetings unprepared
  • Tired and/or unable to concentrate

If these indicators are present, it’s time to get the clutter off of your desk, file things in an orderly manner and start planning ahead of time.  It’s also time to get a hold on your time.  Start by logging your time each day.  From the beginning of your work day to the end, log how you’re spending your time including the time that you spend on the phone, time online, and everything else that you do during the course of your day.

Do this for about a week then look back at your time log.  What do you see?  You might see that you spent 4 hours on a major project, but you know that 30 minutes of that time was spent looking for something related to it before you could even get started.  Maybe phone calls lasted longer than necessary and instead of it taking 15 minutes to make a couple of quick phone calls, you spent 30 or 45.  Perhaps you jumped into your inbox first thing in the morning (not a good habit by the way) and when you looked up you had spent over an hour and hadn’t gotten anything done.

Look at the things that are sucking up your time and create solutions for them.  That might mean organizing your office space and or files so that you can locate things when you need them or setting a couple of designated times to check your email each day instead of diving in first thing and going back whenever your email notification goes off.  As you look at how you’re spending your time, look to see if things are balanced.  You might see that you’re spending more time on administrative things and not so much time on your marketing.  Once you know where your time is going you know where to start to gain control of it and manage it well.


Flags & Filters

This helps you recognize particular types of email faster by flagging email.  For example, you can flag emails that you have read and are your priority to reply with one color so that they are visually separated for your preference the next time you open your email.

One final thing that you can use to help enhance the use of the sub folders that you set up is to use the email filters in your email account to create “rules” for sending emails to designated folders when they come into your inbox.  This is a nice feature to use to help get email to the appropriate folder.  You might set up particular rules for any email with a particular phrase in the subject line to go to a certain folder.  Let’s say you have a marketing project you’re working on.  Ask that any related emails contain the name of the project in the subject line, then set up the related filter rule so that those emails go into the designated folder.  when it comes time to work on that project, you can go directly to that folder instead of searching through the email in your inbox to find all of the email related to that project.


Tip # 3  is a suggestion that helps you organize email.  Create email sub folders within your email account to sort your emails by category. Label the sub folders with categories that will make it easy for you to distinguish.   For example, use different subjects, projects, client or coworker names  for naming your email sub folders. This makes it easy to choose a category of email to check at a particular time.

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