Inbox Zero technically suggests empty inbox or no unread emails in your mailbox at the end of the day. Although this sounds good and interesting practically we all know that neither it is fully possible nor totally desirable. This is because it is very natural for your inbox to receive important emails and that’s what your mailbox is meant for. The problem is with unorganized and messy inbox and that needs to be managed in order to achieve Inbox Zero. Everyone has their own ways of handling emails with different habits and rules they follow, and that makes it more difficult to come up with the one universal strategy to reach Inbox Zero. However, we have selected the best email management tips and techniques that will take you closer to achieve a clean mailbox.
- All Emails In Your Inbox Are Not Equal: If you are working with emails on a daily basis, you need to understand that all your emails are not the same important. 20% of the emails you receive will consume almost 80% of your time. These are the few emails on which you will have to invest the maximum of your time and the rest can be handled very easily in less time. Do not get upset with this and accept it as a part of your daily workflow. You should start working on those few emails as quickly as possible and get them done. The remaining 80% of emails will be a piece of cake and you will be easily able to get them done in no time. This strategy and mental set of mind will help you achieve Inbox Zero quite easily.
- Follow Yesterbox Strategy: Adopt this strategy of Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, and get to Inbox Zero in no time. Yes, you have read it right. This strategy is based on the fact that your today’s to-do list will be to handle yesterday’s emails and it will go on like that. The best part of this strategy is that at the beginning of each day you already know how many emails you have to process and there is a sense of progress as you approach each email from yesterday and go on removing them from your inbox. During the daily progress, you will reach a certain point where you will have zero emails left to be processed from yesterday and you will achieve Inbox Zero. This is an amazing way to handle your mailbox and this also stops you from getting drowned in emails constantly.
- Be Precise: While writing an email remember that it is not a book and it needs to be precise and to the point in order to look formal and easy to understand for your recipient. You can use bullets and short paragraphs to communicate your message and, in most cases, this will end the conversation with a single email. This is a great way to achieve Inbox Zero quickly.
- Protect Your Mailbox From Spam: If you are using email for registering at online services, shopping, travel websites, etc., you may be getting a lot of promotional content you don’t need. This will distract you from work and take some time to get everything organized. Instead, it is a good way to train your spam filter, use clean.email unsubscriber to opt-out from all unwanted emails, and block senders you don’t want to get emails from anymore.
Reaching a total Inbox Zero is a myth and not desirable also. However, you can definitely get close to Inbox Zero and fewer emails in your mailbox by using the email management techniques mentioned above.