De-cluttering = Disencumbering Your E-mails, too!


De-cluttering can be a challenge at the best of times. We all have our goals of when and what to discard. It seems like it never ends. Today I’m discussing de-cluttering our e-mails.

June's Inbox
June’s Inbox

I spent last Saturday with my family. (I blogged about it on #365daysofjuneday 9) That meant I spent the day not looking at my e-mails, except before leaving in the morning, until the Sunday morning. It is easy to check your e-mails from a Smart Phone while lying snug under the covers in your bed on a cold morning with Ninja Buddy tucked behinds my knees sleeping away.  Sunday morning’s e-mail greeted me with 465 messages in my inbox. I deleted 48 messages in the morning before leaving on Saturday. I didn’t empty my deleted folder. I prefer to manually empty it in case I need to close my e-mail before reviewing the folder. I like to review my deleted folder before emptying in case I accidentally moved an e-mail in it.

I deleted 39 messages before I realized I may not be the only person with this problem. So the idea of blogging about how I de-clutter my e-mail. The image above gives you an idea of how I organize my inbox. The arrow beside Bills, Blog Posts, Family, Genealogy, Health and Wellness, Registrations, Society Memberships, Webinars and Writing indicates a drop down menu for each folder. (Example below.)

Blog Post drop down menu
Drop Down Menu

The folders with Highlighted numbers indicates to me that I have unread e-mails in the folder. I most likely did a quick read of the e-mail and prioritized it for later at a time more convenient to me.  Sometimes I may add a reminder. You right click on your e-mail and a drop down menu appears, move your mouse to the Follow Up arrow, chose Add reminder

Add reminder menu
Add reminder menu

I right click the follow up arrow, giving me multiple choice of how I want to follow up with this e-mail.

Add Remider Custom Box Date Choices
Add Reminder Custom Box Date Choices
Add Reminder Custom Box drop down menu
Add Reminder Custom Box drop down menu

I use it like my “To Do” List. In the top of the two images above you see arrows by the date to right click on, change it to the day you want to follow up on that e-mail. I use this option as a reminder for upcoming webinars, when to follow up to a “cousin” e-mail requesting family information or just to postpone the reading to a convenient time.  I will respond to the “cousin” e-mail with a follow up of my response. I like to verify what I may be sending, including source/s where I found the information, so they may view it themselves, if they choose.

Late Add Reminder
Late Add Reminder

Sometime when I don’t get to the follow up at the scheduled time I get a RED highlighted e-mail along with the pop-up reminders it gives you on the day and time you scheduled it for.

Now to the fun part, HOW to reduce the number of e-mails and still follow your friends, groups and pages on Facebook. I found most of my e-mails with Facebook notifications.

When I first join a page, group or accept a friend I keep the notifications on. I “cruise” the pages, so to speak. When l eventually know and feel comfortable with them I decide if notifications stay on or off.

Friends: If a newly accepted friend only posts game invites, they will be unfriended by me. I DON”T DO GAMES ON FACEBOOK, PERIOD. If my friend post other interests I want to view I turn of notifications and go to their timeline at my convenience. I will still get the post on my Facebook feed, unless I un-follow them. Facebook doesn’t post all posting, as you probably have noticed, that is why I go to the person timeline to update what is happening with them.

Notification post off

My genealogy friend, Janice Webster Brown, allowed me to use her post for this blog, as long as I didn’t un-follow her. It was never in the back of my mind to un-follow her.  When on Janice’s individual post, not the whole time line, you can right click on the arrow to the right of her name. A drop down menu gives you options of what you want to do with this post. The more options was Embed post. I have never embedded a post, so I not sure exactly what it would do.  I go down and highlight, right click on it. You will receive a notice above the post stating “You’ll no longer get notifications about this post. Turn on notifications.”  The turn on notification is there if you accidentally clicked the notification off or want to resume notifications. You can do the same for your own post. (Shown In the image below.)

Notification Timeline Post
Notification Timeline Post

Pages/Groups: Is a little different for Pages/Groups. When I join a group/page I leave the notifications on until I’m comfortable. I turn off notifications at that point.

Group Notifications
Group Notifications

I can follow Pages/ Group by looking on the left side of my home page. I can click on each one, at my convenience, to become updated on what is happening. The image below shows my Pages/Groups/Friends; how many posts were made since I last looked at their Facebook timeline, with a number to the right of the title.


My Facebook Home Page
My Facebook Home Page

I do the same thing for newsletters I subscribe to. I “Cruise” for a while, decide if continuing with the newsletter or just go to the web page when I want something.

Making these few changes can reduce the number of e-mails in your inbox. YOU HAVE CONTROL, when you want to receive and when to stop.

I would like to say I try to update my notifications monthly, I’m human, life gets in the way. I know it is time to revisit when I go one day without e-mail and find over 400 waiting in my inbox the next day.

Take Control! De-Clutter your e-mail and Facebook page. You will be happy you did.


2 thoughts on “De-cluttering = Disencumbering Your E-mails, too!

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