January 22-28 is National Clean out Your Inbox Week (I know, I know. There are special days for everything if you look hard enough). Ah, the email inbox. It can be a place of joy or terror depending on your organization and cleaning skills, but there is no need to fear it anymore! These easy tips will help you master your inbox and, hopefully, will help you easily sort and find all those pesky emails that keep flooding in.
- Conversation Mode – This mode can be really helpful if you get a lot of group emails, or emails that are linked together by the same subject. This mode automatically groups all of these together into one single headline, with the individual emails able to expand out, if wanted, which is super helpful to keep all of your similar emails together.
- Categories – If you hate the conversation mode look, you can just assign category colors to conversations. Colors help you easily identify items that belong together and helps you reference like items faster.
- Email Folders – Like regular paper filing, you can digitally file your emails into folders. This is another way to keep like-minded emails together and easy to find. One step further in this is to automatically send new email directly into these folders. This step automatically helps you keep your inbox clean, but it also has the added benefit of making sure you don’t linger on less important emails. These will go straight to their folder to be viewed later, instead of piquing your interest immediately.
- Filters – Do you remember flagging an email, or that it has an attachment, but you can’t seem to find it? Outlook allows you to filter emails based on importance level, flagging, category, attachments and more!
- Archive Folders – If you’re done with a project or file folder and you don’t need to use it on a regular basis, archive it. You can always go back to it and open it up to refresh your mind when you need to, but it won’t be bogging down your email’s size any more.
- Delete Items – This is the easiest way to clean out your inbox…just delete things. There are tons of newsletters (but obviously not ours), mailing list emails, junk, and just old messages you no longer need. That cleansing, zen feeling is all that junk disappearing…forever.
Congratulations!!! You are well on your way to a clean, organized inbox. Time to reward all of your hard work!