Getting control over your time and inbox

So, it’s been a while since I wrote, a lot of things happened. Often I started a blog post but didn’t post it. Here is one that I think it will be useful.

My inbox has been at zero in last probably 7 years, it is a habit that when I learned, I just kept it and I don’t really have to think about it much any more. I am surprised when I read tweets and posts about otherwise capable people, struggling with getting inbox to zero. And on top of that I never did that email bankrupcu thing that some people do when they erase emails for them. If you sent me, I read it, or not, but I sure don’t miss it accidentally (happened rarely, few times).

I will explain how to get there simply and easily, this is simple way to get more productive and efficient, feel better and communicate better.

So, how do you get your inbox there?
Very simply, take a deep breath and decide to do it. You don’t even have to do everything in the same day, if you really get a ton of emails, but decide.
Then create folder ‘past inbox’. Move all of your emails there, just select all and move. From that moment on, you will decide about every email that comes to you.
Next step is to start from the top of past inbox pile and decide about emails. You will do following things with it:
* respond to it (you can create folder action and move it there, I respond it right away)
* decide this is something you don’t need, VERY IMPORTANT, don’t just delete it, if it is a newsletter make sure you click and unsubscribe. From now on, any newsletter, mailing that you don’t really have time to read, can find info online etc, click on unsubscribe and then delete.
This way you will save yourself work in the future.
* any regular mailings that you receive but really don’t need your immediate attention, just filter into appropriate folder. Being wise there is of utmost importance.
I love getting sales info from NewEgg and like, however every sale newsletter from them goes to newsletters/sale folder. I can find them whenever I need them
* shopping notices go to shopping folder, account creating emails go to account folder, facebook updates go to facebook folder (which I rarely check).
* If you have server monitoring and think that you need to see those emails, it is fine, I would still filter them into folder but check it, however, for some finance related stuff, I just make filter that would mark it with appropriate label, but will leave them in my inbox. That way I can take a look and then just archive them.
* Delete a lot, most of information that is coming to your inbox can be easily found online, unsubscribe whenever you can.
* project based, client based emails, make filters for people you corespond to label them, then if you see something you want to respond later, you can just archive them and check them later. No need to do anything more then once that can be automated.

Now that I made my inbox clean, I don’t really check it that often, no need, rarely emails are that important. But when I do, there is never too much and it is easy to respond.

One more thing I noticed, if you don’t like something, if client is unreasonable or plain silly, put that email aside and respond in 30 mins.

Hope I made you productive, I already am.

Best,
Zeljko Dakic

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