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Managing your email inbox – Part I

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In today’s world, we are bombarded with information at a much higher rate than in years past. One of the biggest culprits is email. If you’re honest with yourself, probably 80% of what lands in your inbox can be deleted immediately or after a quick scan. Imagine if you get 50 to 100 emails a day, 40 to 80 of those can be deleted in a few minutes! How would it feel to have only 10 to 20 emails you need to really think about each day?

Here are some guidelines to use for deleting:

  • Junk, spam or chain letters: This is obvious. Simply turn on your junk mail filter and most junk mail will automatically go into a spam folder. Check the spam folder every couple of days and flag anything that is safe.
  • Unwanted emails: When an email lands in your inbox from a sender that you never want to see again, quickly flag it as spam and future emails will be sent to the spam folder.
  • Ads, catalogs, etc.: Delete these immediately unless you plan to buy something from them within the next week. You can be sure that if you’re on their list, you’ll get another one.
  • Reply to all copies: Most of these emails can be deleted. Unless it relates to an ongoing matter that you need to act on or keep a record of.
  • Jokes and pictures from friends: Be honest about which ones you enjoy and which ones you read because you feel you “should”. Most people won’t check to see if you’ve read them, but if you must do so, delete them afterwards.

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