Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Re-Post: Feng Shui Your Inbox!

My husband has me hooked on the show Game of Thrones so I'm going to watch and repost a popular article from October 2011. Hope you enjoy!

If e-mail was real mail, then just like out of an episode of Hoarders, my pillow would be a stack of spam mail about 3 feet high and you'd have to use the window to get to the toilet. All while 8 cats roamed the house. I don't have 8 cats, but it seems like if you've got hoarding issues, you also have cats.

(Photo from Hoarders. This is a virtual room tour where you can learn 
about items the hoarder had trouble parting with. Kinda disturbing...)

I am an e-mail hoarder. Not on purpose mind you. I just stopped deleting them. The 1.5 seconds it took to delete an e-mail became too time consuming. So I just let it go...and go...and go... And now I have a gabillion e-mails! Most of them are non-important, but seeing the "Inbox (391)" at the top of the page makes me feel mentally cluttered as well.

Wedding planning comes with the need to be organized. Contracts, schedules, timelines and handy newsletters start to take over your inbox and while I know some of you have got this e-mail organization thing all figured out, the following might help if you don't. Drawing from the rules of Feng Shui, or "the art of flow," I've listed a few steps below on how we can take back control of our inbox!

- Open Spaces says e-mail is just like water in that it keeps a constant flow. Keep the flow positive by dealing with e-mails as you receive them.   

- Open Spaces also mentions the importance of getting organized by creating e-mail folders. I will take that one step further and suggest that if you can't respond to an e-mail ASAP, create a folder designated for nightly followup. This way you will be less likely to let it sit in your inbox indefinitely and you already have a list of what needs your attention.  

-Unsubscribe from pesky, unwanted newsletters as you receive them. This may take a while, but keep it up and you will eventually reduce your spam.  

- Don't be afraid to use your e-mail provider block's feature for messages which bring negativity, such as petulant sales people, into your life.
If you have any advice, feel free to let me know in the comment section and I'll post it in a followup. 

**UPDATE** November 6, 2011 - I did it! I finally cleared my inbox! My brain feels so much less cluttered. 


Natasha said...

Recently I unsubscribed from a number of e-mail newsletters. But now I kinda miss them :)
p.s. Here's a tip:
- Delete your old e-mails with activation keys. You really don't need them. That will allow you to keep your inbox clear of clutter and will also allow you to locate an important old email in a matter of seconds. :)

andrea kathryn said...

I am right with you on this one! I have this "that is something I would really like to read/follow up on... later" thing going on and it seems that that huge window of time I am expecting to set aside to do that in just simply does not... will not... exist. Yeah. So today's plan includes some removing of newsletters. Last week I set up some folders, and that is already helping... so I can vouch for that one! Good to see you back! Your absence made me start my own blog... so thanks :) I think! LOL

Jennifer said...

Natasha, what exactly do you mean by activation keys? I feel like this is a stupid question, but yes, I do kind of live under a rock now that I have a baby. :)

Kathryn, Yes! There is a black hole and that's where all the time goes - I am sure of it! Good luck though. I am still working on deleting all the unnecessary emails and I spent a good amount of time unsubscribing from newsletters this evening. And your new blog is awesome! Adding it to the blog roll now!

Natasha said...

Sorry for being confusing, I was trying to say: When you register to a forum (or some other online group), you get an activation key sent to your email address. And I've been registered at many forums (magazines, newsletters etc.) throughout the years, but never deletes old emails with activation keys. So, couple of weeks ago I decided to delete those old emails. And now my inbox looks more manageable.

Jennifer said...

@Natasha - Ah, okay, I understand now. I don't think I have kept any activation keys but I know what you mean. It's easy to think you'll need that stuff later and then you never do.

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