The Zoomer Report: Clearing Your Inbox

Here’s a job I always have trouble with – clearing out my inbox. So I’m passing along these tips from the Globe and Mail.

1. Don’t delete; archive
I keep a lot of my email for documentation purposes, so I don’t like to delete. Creating an archive folder seems like a good plan. That would be the place for messages that have been dealt with.

2. Clear out anything that’s more than two weeks old
Bottom line if it’s urgent, the sender will follow up.

3. Turn off notifications
According to the UnClutterer Blog, obsessively checking e-mail is far less productive than setting a timer to check e-mail every 30 minutes or so. You’ll be more likely to read, sort and reply to e-mails by priority that way, and that will keep your inbox tidier.

So turnoff the alert system that pops up every time you have a new e-mail.

4. Use message rules to keep your inbox clear
And filter lower-priority e-mails before they clutter up your inbox. You could start with a rule that diverts messages where your address shows up in the CC field to another folder. You can find this option through the Tools menu on Microsoft Outlook. Then, check them out when you have time.

*And finally here’s a big don’t:

Do not forward your personal e-mail to your corporate e-mail account: Inappropriate messages could get you in trouble with management and besides, you’ll only be adding to the clutter.

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About The Zoomer Report
Libby ZnaimerLibby Znaimer, a prominent Canadian journalist specializing in business, politics, and lifestyle issues, is producer and host of The Zoomer Report, a special feature on topics of interest to baby boomers and the 50+. It covers everything from health and wealth to leisure and volunteerism, from the special vantage point of the generation that has changed society in its wake. Ms. Znaimer is also Vice-President of News and Information for Classical 96.3FM and AM740. Her first book, “In Cancerland – Living Well Is The Best Revenge” – was published in October 2007 by Key Porter.