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How To Very Quickly Clear Your Email

A lot of email got you feeling down? I know the feeling. After spending a bunch of time playing around analyzing the root causes of why an inbox gets backed up, and using a few different techniques and tools, I've got a pretty rock-solid way to get your inbox to zero fast. It'll absolutely work for you if you do it.

Recommended Materials:

*Laptop*Comfortable spot without internet access*Offline email: Mac Mail, Thunderbird, Outlook, the Offline Gmail Chrome Plugin, or something similar*Scrap paper and a pen*An elegant note-taking program. I recommend Evernote.*A calendar

If you're an "online email only" kind of guy or gal, I'd recommend you set up IMAP so you've got all your email on your computer. Empirically speaking, internet access is distracting and leads down rabbit holes. The success rate of successfully clearing out the inbox goes down if you're online, and the time it takes to do so at least doubles. If you're a Gmail user, you're in luck -- Offline Gmail for Chrome is quite robust and you won't need to set anything up. I still like using Outlook or OSX's native Mail App better than Offline Gmail, but it's fast to set up.

Understanding the Email Problem

Running List of Agendas

Last post, I mentioned in passing that creating an "Agendas" notebook on Evernote on or a folder on your desktop can be very valuable when clearing a lot of email out.

Today, I'd like to simply break that out and say -- If you dont have a running Agenda list, start one today and try it for a week.

It's rare to find a productivity technique that is easy to maintain, with almost no cost, no downside, and that produces huge gains. And the running list of Agendas is one of those.

It's easy to start. If you forget to do it for a while, it's easy to restart with no real cost, cleanup time, or setup time required. Ty it out for a week and report back; I think you'll be utterly amazed at how much more you done in your conversations and meetings.

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