This is how I read my emails everyday. I briefly look at each of them as they come in and quickly decide one of these things:
- Is it something I need to read and respond to now?
- Is it junk mail?
- Is it work-related?
- Is it something I would like to read or should read, but need to have more time or more focus for?
- Is it something that I can use in a blog post?
I do have files set up so that I can move stuff around as I need to, in order to go back later to read when I have the time. But I was just looking through one of those files and realized that I hadn’t really been going back and reading all that stuff that I was saving….there were posts that were a year old saved in there for me to read! Yikes! Maybe I didn’t really need to be saving all those emails after all.
So this is your Monday challenge – clean out your email box! Empty all those folders you have that you aren’t reading anyway. Delete all the messages you don’t need anymore (which is probably 90% of them). Empty the deleted files/trash can. Go through your address book and delete those duplicate addresses, or old addresses, or addresses for people you don’t even know! Create groups to help organize your addresses. Create folders to help organize the emails that you DO need to keep. You should treat your email just like your regular mail. Deal with stuff as it comes in, save the important stuff in a file, toss out the junk mail and stuff you don’t need! Come to think of it, my email box is a lot like my desk. Personal mail I read right away, bills I pay, checks I deposit, the rest piles up until I can decide what to do with it. Ha Ha
Ah, now isn’t that a nice feeling to have such a clean email box? Schedule time to do it on a regular basis. If you have more than one email account (which many of us do), you need to follow through with all of them. Searching through hundreds of emails to find the one that you want only takes up precious time that you could be using for something else more fun. Like playing in the studio!