declutter your email inbox

As a Virtual Assistant, online communication is very important for my business.  Email is one of the important tools I use for this but sometimes receiving so many emails can get annoying or even overwhelming.  When your inbox is too full, checking your mail can get daunting and important correspondences can get lost.  To help you reduce this problem and help you get more productive in your business, here are some useful tips to reduce your email load.

  1. Unsubscribe. Have you heard of the KonMari method? Do this with all the emails you get especially with any automated email newsletters, etc.  If they’re not giving you any value and if you haven’t been reading any of their emails anyway, open the emails, scroll down and look for the fine print.  Find the unsubscribe link, click it and follow the instructions to get yourself off of their email list.

  2. Spam It. If certain emails look suspicious, if they make it hard for you to remove yourself off of their list, instead of just deleting, mark these emails as spam or junk. This lets your email app know what emails should go straight to the junk/spam folder.  The more you do this, the more your email app will learn what things are really important.  If there’s a a lot of emails you need to do this on, use the bulk select and have it check all of the emails on your screen at once, then unclick the few emails you actually want to keep.

  3. Use a Project Managing App.  My favorite app at the moment is Asana. Instead of using just email, I try to do the bulk of my client communications through this app. It’s like a checklist where you can assign tasks and projects to someone and include due dates.  Any communication pertaining to a particular task or project will be done in that particular task or project thread and everything will stay fairly organized automatically.  No more moving emails into a particular email folder.

  4. Use Separate Accounts. Do you love to sign up frequently for email newsletters and opt-ins that you never read? Open up a second account specifically for this or use your old one and start fresh with a new account (just make sure to let your contacts know your new primary email has changed!).  This way all your spam will go to an account you won’t have to check and all your important email will have less to compete with for your attention in your cleaner inbox.

If you decide on opening a free email account, if you haven’t already done so, I suggest opening a Gmail account.  Usually, other than your own domain name email, other email providers look more dated or less professional (services such as aol and hotmail especially).  Gmail also comes with many other free tools such as Google Drive and Google Docs and go well with other services such as Google+ and YouTube.

  1. Hire Help. Sometimes the task is just too overwhelming.  Hiring a VA like me to clean up, organize, and maintain your accounts can take a huge burden off of your shoulders.  Let someone else sit down and do the boring and tedious work of going through your emails!

Got anymore tips and tricks? How’s your inbox doing today? I would love to hear more of your thoughts on my Facebook Page.

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