IF you are like me, you need to get your inbox to zero. That means, to zero messages. Leaving messages in the inbox for any period often results in no action at all.
Taking your inbox to zero frees you from storing messages with multiple replies. They often make up the bulk of emails and are hard to follow.
How many emails do you have in your inbox? I've emptied my inbox at around 1,500 emails, but recently approached 2,000. I know that many of you end up with many more, going into the tens of thousands of messages.
Organize your inbox to zero
The best way to get your inbox to zero is utilizing an organizational system. Many are available, or you could start by creating a couple of folders to segment your email.
The two folders you should create are 1) an archives folder for emails not actionable, but are needed for reference in the future, and 2) an actionable email folder for items that are going to end up on your to-do list.
There is the third folder, the trash folder, which you have already been using. Obviously, the trash folder is for messages that have no value.
The key to get your inbox to zero now depends on moving our messages to one of the three designated folders.
Decide if you will move messages as you read them, or if you plan to schedule a particular time each day to go through email.
The experts suggest that you read and respond to email at a few designated times throughout the day, instead of checking your email as it comes in.
Personally, I am guilty of checking my email as it comes in. My productivity is hindered by the break in focus due to reading email as it comes in.
Are you distracted by reading new messages as they come into your inbox?
The ideas in this post are the very first step towards getting organized, and they are simple ideas. Dig in deeper for more organizational strategies and pick a system that works for you.
Will you let me know your ideas on how to get your inbox to zero, and to get organized? Please share them in the comment section.