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Email Management: Delete - Keep - Reply

I'm attempting to get a better handle on my mishandling of emails. My sister told me about her email rule - Maximum of 50 emails in her inbox at any one time. This rule forces her to keep her email from bloating out of control. I opened up my mail program and saw that I had over 6000 emails in my INBOX -- it's a fact that I do get more email than she does, so I'm thinking I may have to use a higher number if I wish to follow her rules, but a reasonable and somewhat managable number -- MAXIMUM of 100 maybe. Anyway, over the past week I've managed to get the number down to 205 emails. How did I do it?

Much like sorting through items in a closet and choosing to either "Trash" "Donate" or "Keep" each item. I gave myself 3 options for each email "Delete" "Keep" or "Reply."

Delete
I ended up deleting many of my emails. I feel badly, but it is simply too embarrasing to answer emails that are over one year old. Better, the sender think this email was lost in cyberspace I'm thinking.

Keep
Emails that do not require a response, but have info in them which I may want to reference later are my "keepers." These emails are being moved into other mail folders in a loosely organized fashion. My mail folders are for reference only, I am not allowing myself to move emails that require a response to get filed into other folders where they will be forgotten.

Reply
Anyway, as of this morning I have 205 emails in my INBOX.... but most of them, probably all of them are requiring an answer so it is going to be tougher getting this number down to 100 or possibly 50 (am I dreaming?). I'm challenging myself to make this happen by the end of August.

Wish me luck in moving forward and sticking to this new rule. If I can do this, it will relieve the burden of my feeling guilt over unanswered and unattended email contacts.


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