Amid the Thanksgiving preparations, it’s hard to miss another (rather noisy) detail that our society is getting ready for. In fact, you’d have to be living under a rock to not notice that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are fast approaching.
Whether or not you plan to hit up some deals and do some shopping, I’ll bet every retailer you’ve ever followed online is sending you an email this week, letting you know what their sale or deal is, and imploring you to come check it out.
On the one hand, who doesn’t love a good deal? On the other hand, when I’m about to leave for four days of glorious long weekend, the last thing I want to be fretting about is how full my email inbox will be when I get back.
So in today’s post, I’m going to point out an opportunity we have this week. Since all these different business emails are going to be in our inboxes this week, this is an excellent time to do two things:
Step 1: Unsubscribe from newsletters you’re not interested in anymore.
You purchased something one time months ago from Overstock.com, and now you get their email updates. Or maybe it’s the random newsletter you haven’t heard from in so long you forgot all about them. Ask yourself: Do you want these email reminders? Do they send you emails you actually need, or care about reading? If the answer is yes, proceed to step 2. But if the answer is no, hit that unsubscribe link and tell those emails to be gone forever.
Step 2: Set up a filter so that future non-urgent, non-important emails skip your inbox
For all those emails that pass the step one test, we’re not quite done yet. Now the question is: are these emails urgent and important to me?
Here’s the deal:
Read that again. Organizing other people’s priorities. Everyone who emails you wants something. You, however, aren’t obligated to respond to everything that arrives, and if you choose to give those emails your attention, you GET to decide to read and respond in your own time.
I choose to allow personal emails (or emails from clients) to always arrive in my inbox—if there’s a 1:1 relationship behind the electronic communication, the message will generally be important to me. But past that, I’m very discerning about emails that are allowed in my inbox. Social media notifications, shipping updates, sales notifications and marketing emails I choose to subscribe to all get relegated to a subfolder (or as Gmail calls them: a label), where I can go and read them when I feel like it. They aren’t cluttering my inbox, making me feel guilty that I have 90 unread messages that I need to deal with.
(Sidenote: Gmail has an automated filtering system for promotions that works kinda sorta similar to what I’m about to show you. In my experience, it doesn’t always filter mail the way I wish it would, so I choose to disable the automation and set up my own filters. If you want to take more control over your inbox, the video below will show you how.)
So back to our opportunity: since all the retailers we know are hitting our inboxes this week, it’s a great time to take stock of what you’re seeing and ask the questions: do I want this email to take up precious real estate in my inbox? Or does it deserve a lesser spot in a label that isn’t right in my face every time I check my mail?
If you’d like to learn how to create a filter to make non-urgent, non-important emails skip your inbox and arrive in a label instead, I made a video tutorial just for you.
Just enter your email in the box below to watch it instantly!
Note: this video tutorial is specifically for Gmail. If you use another platform for your email, this video probably isn’t for you. If you do use Gmail—either the free version OR the paid GSuite version, this will be perfect for you.
Watch the video tutorial
Learn how to declutter your inbox with filters in a 3 minute video tutorial.
Hope you enjoy the video!
In other news…work is winding down and Thanksgiving is almost here. When I stop to count my blessings, I always think of the precious humans like you who grace me with your attention and read my words. Thanks for being in my orbit! Here’s wishing you the happiest of holidays, and tons of love.