Create 4 basic folders (Labels) in your email.
- Action (To act on fast - set task appointment and reminders)
- Deferred (Things that can wait)
- Read Review (Items of interest that are not important to act on)
- References (Information you can't just Google when you need it)
Delete the garbage (Archive/Delete as needed)
- select 'All mail' and use the search feature to find oldest emails
- grab all the old emails and archive or delete
- use search filters for past Newsletters no longer wanted and delete those too
- unsubscribe to unwanted news-feeds and letters as you go
Create tasks for actionable emails
- for date specific items, create a task in your gmail calendar with reminders
- place a star on email needing action
- file actionable email under the 'Action', 'Deferred' or 'Read Review' labels
- consider using Evernote for task lists (Free to use and it can sync anywhere)
- take time to set up good task lists
- learn the 'GTD - Getting Things Done' method of productivity for the most effective task list management
File away your resource emails
- these can all get lumped into the 'References' label
- search old email and file as needed
- only keep what you can't find easily on Google whenever you want
- if you have newsletters or email that need to be read but not urgently, place them under the 'Read Review' label
Create filters & practice quick communication
- create filters as needed for future news and resources
- review old labels and consider new filters for Read Review and Deferred tasks too
- keep your email engagement down to 2 minutes each as much as possible
- if you can answer or file away an email in less than 2 minutes, do it immediately
These Assessments are only meant to bring to light areas you may want to improve.
They also will help to give you an overall feel for just how organized you really are.
All you need is 5 minutes to assess your organization...
1. Do you make time to be organized?
2. When your home / office is messy, how do you feel?
3. Can you find your keys right away?
4. Do you feel in control?
5. Are you on time for your appointments?
6. Do you use a calendar / planner to organize your events / schedule?
7. Do you use a ‘To-Do’ List?
8. Do you break down larger tasks into smaller pieces?
9. Do you know where your passport is?
10. Do you shred personal documents before throwing them out?
Want to dig a little deeper?
Take the Personal and Workplace Assessments here...