Email is the greatest double-edged sword in productivity technology. It both empowers and overwhelms you. But most successful pros I know learn to control their email instead of letting it run their workday. Here are some simple tools and practices to help tame your email inbox.
Keep your Email inbox empty
Use this three-folder system to get your current email inbox empty.
Use disposable email addresses
If you hate the idea of giving your email address to any website that asks for it and you want to protect your email address from junk mail and spam, sign up for a secondary email account with Yahoo mail or Gmail or use a disposable email address.
Here are two LifeHacker articles to guide you
https://www.mailinator.com/ - Free, pubic email system where you can use any inbox you want.
http://lifehacker.com/144397/instant-disposable-gmail-addresses- LifeHacker.com article on how create disposable email account in Gmail.
Unsubscribe from unwanted email lists.
Use Unroll.me https://unroll.me/ to instantly see a list of all your subscription emails and unsubscribe from any unwanted lists in a single click.
Backup your important Google mail, calendar, Google+, Docs, and other accounts using Google Takeout.
This is Google’s in-house tool for exporting all of your email, contacts, and calendar information. It’s good practice to do this every once in a while — just in case your account gets hacked and you can’t access your email. You can export all Gmail messages or just select labels.
Here are the basic instructions for backing things up: https://takeout.google.com/settings/takeout
Eliminate Email Spam
I have become increasingly concerned about the onslaught of SPAM email and how it diminishes productivity. Spammers are always finding clever ways to get unwanted crap into your email inbox It’s annoying to go to your inbox and have to look through a whole list of emails to find one legitimate email.
Most spam consists of unwanted advertising, but some can transmit viruses, adware, spyware and other problems.
Here's a short lesson on how to fight back and keep your inbox clean, regardless of what email service you use. An effective anti-spam regimen can solve many of your email problems.
Let me start by giving you an overview of how spam filters work and then follow up with some specific tools and techniques to help you tame your email inbox.
An effective anti-spam program can solve many of your email problems. Not only do they block unwanted spam but they can also organize your emails into folders, so your inbox only includes wanted email.
So, what does a quality spam filter do exactly?
- Good anti-spam software establishes White Lists and Black Lists.
A white list is a specific list of approved addresses that you set. Items not on the approved list and "known" spammers automatically go to the black list and are blocked, deleted or filed.
- A spam filter programs allow you to block a high percentage of spammed pornography. Some will also filter out "adult" contented emails or block adult-oriented images.
- Spam filters also allow users to build folders, such as financial, work-related, games, or others and the program will put incoming emails into assigned folders. This gives the user a choice about which emails they want to look at.
To learn more about the top spam filters, check out this LikeHacker article from 2010. It’s a bit dated now but still chock full of information for eliminating Spam and covering techniques and tools for Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, Apple mail, and more.