It doesn’t take long for an email inbox to become littered with messages that are completely forgotten, not relevant anymore or downright spam or junk mail. Most individuals receive thousands of emails every month, yet only a handful of messages are still relevant after a few weeks. Here are a few tips to help you manage your email inbox instead of allowing it to manage you.
Turn Off Email Notifications
It might sound counter-productive to turn off your email notifications, but allowing notifications to constantly interrupt you is distracting and stressful. Instead of stopping your current activities to address an email, set aside a certain amount of time at regular intervals, perhaps the first 10 minutes of every hour, to check your email. This way, you stay in charge of your time and maintain your focus on the task at hand.
Setup Rules, Filters or Labels
Take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with your particular email program and how it can help you organize all incoming emails. You can always find a free tutorial online or ask your IT support person how to take advantage of the built-in organizational tools found in every email program. Spending a bit of time up front to filter the unimportant from the important, organizing emails in folders, etc. can save a lot of time in the long run.
Automatic Replies and Canned Responses
If you find yourself repeating the same responses over and over, consider creating a list of your frequent replies that you can copy and paste. Review your particular email program for instructions on how to set up automatic replies and use them if you need to.
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