I am holding myself responsible (and accountable) for cleaning out my email inbox between now and a week from now. I figure it's a good exercise to do over the holiday weekend.
I have a semi-stored backlog of emails in my inbox that number between 60 and 80. As it approaches 100, I vow I'm going to delete 10 a day. I do that... for one day.
I came upon this article today about cleaning out your inbox which gives a step by step plan that appealed to me. Funny, how I could write the article, but sometimes it's easier to just be told what to do. This caught my eye:
Think of snail mail as an analogy. If you put every package or letter you received on your kitchen table without filing it away or throwing it out, your kitchen would soon become an unmanageable pile of papers. Your inbox works in the same way—it’s most effective when you clear it out.
I need to be spoken to clearly and simply like this.
When it comes to snail mail, I am almost obsessive. I quickly divide it into recycling, shredding, a pile (such as bills) that needs action and checks which go in a specific place awaiting a trip to the bank. I am religious about this. Yet I have emails going back to April that have sat there for months. I also have files of emails from old trade shows, old articles, etc. that can be deleted.
So who wants to join me in the great email purge?
PS: In case you don't go to read the article, it also talks about unsubscribing. Every so often, I'll get on a tear and do that ruthlessly, but somehow, just like a starfish's legs, they all eventually grow back. So I'll be unsubbing too. I think what annoys me -- let's say Stonewall Kitchen -- I buy from there from time to time, like their merchandise (sort of old fashioned foods, jams, syrups, etc.) but I don't want to hear from them every day. I wouldn't mind an occasional email, but I don't need a daily one. Bye bye Stonewall Kitchen.
And I have to add that "We miss you" as a subject line brings a smile on my face that I haven't been shopping!
Update: I've done my first unsub -- the St. Kitts Chamber of Commerce news release list, left over from when I wrote for a diving magazine. I didn't want to ask to be removed (oh man, this is embarrassing) because I really liked the woman and I didn't want to hurt her feelings. I know: I should slap myself upside my own head. So I asked to be unsubbed and thanked her for the lovely job she does on behalf of her clients. Then it was on to a Radio City Music Hall email that I swear I get way too frequently from when I bought tickets there about eight years ago. Then another daily one so I've started the unsub campaign.