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Putting My Email On A Diet

Like so many bloggers, I get hundreds of emails a day. Press releases, newsletters I don’t remember subscribing to (this is what happens when you drop your card in the “win this” fishbowl at conferences, ladies), offers of products to reviews, pleas from small business owners asking me to promote their products.

It’s gotten to the point that I hate checking my email. Every morning I log in and check, and overnight I’ve gotten seventy emails. By midday, I’m well over 200. By seven in the evening, it’s hitting 350.

Worst of all, I find myself not reading the emails that do matter. I delete the obvious ones I don’t want to bother with, then I save the ones I should look at and then… they pile up. I end up with a few hundred emails lingering in my inbox, waiting to be waded through, and I just. get. stuck.

One of my resolutions for 2013 was to make inbox zero a real possibility. I’d tried email bankruptcy (deleting everything and starting over) but it didn’t solve the massive influx of crap that I received every day I had to turn off the tap.

So, since the beginning of January, I’ve been unsubscribing. I lost cost around 600 newsletters. Then I began sending a polite email to all the people that send me pitches and press release (the ones that didn’t have an unsubscribe button) letting them know that I no longer accept press releases.

So far, I’ve spent about ten hours in this process but it’s starting to work. Each day my email is lighter. Today I opened my email in the morning and found only a dozen or so emails waiting for me. I had the time to respond to them immediately.

This might not work for all bloggers; it’s easy for me to turn down product reviews, for instance, because that’s not really what I do on my blog (nor do I ever mention stuff in press releases). But I feel like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders not to mention that it’s made it much easier for me to stay on top of things.

How about you? How are you tackling your busy inbox? Did you make a resolution to have a more organized inbox?

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