“You’ve Got Mail” used to be the coolest thing when email was brand new. It was so rare to get an email that when you did, it was a big event! Now email comes in at rapid speed and some feel that no matter what they do they just can’t stay on top of it. So here are some tips on how to manage those emails (and your sanity) using the Inbox Zero technique.
Inbox Zero is the act of managing your inbox to keep it at, or as close to, zero emails as possible. The Zero in the name, however, doesn’t refer to the number of emails, but the amount of time you should spend managing your email. The more time you spend with your mind in your inbox, the less time you have to be productive. You can’t be awesome if you never respond to an important email someone sent you.
Why use Inbox Zero?
- It’s inefficient to look at the same emails over and over again
- A loaded inbox adds pressure to your mind
- A piled up inbox is giving in to someone else making you a to-do list
- Email is a distraction
- Email is a bad way to communicate – if you can communicate in person, do that
Now let’s see how we can achieve Inbox Zero. Like any new technique it takes dedication. Forming a new habit isn’t easy. Try sticking to it for 21 days, thats how long it takes to form a habit!
Ways to Achieve Inbox Zero:
- Don’t have your email constantly open.
- Choose a specific time, such as the top of every hour or 3 times a day, to look at your email.
- Delete anything that can be deleted right away.
- Forward anything that can be delegated.
- Anything that can be responded to in 2 minutes, do right away.
- Put anything requiring more than 2 minutes in a separate response folder and schedule a specific time 1x/day to tackle that folder.
- Unsubscribe from anything you truly don’t ever read or need to see.
If you keep your inbox clean using this method you will quickly find that your mind is clearer knowing your inbox is clear. It won’t be a constant weight on your mental shoulders. Good luck!
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