Your time is limited, and you can only respond t so many emails. Why not cut out some of the unnecessary ones or direct them to designated folders when they arrive? There are several email hacks that you can incorporate to help you reduce the time you spend on email each day, so you can spend less time being “busy” and more time being “productive”.

  1. Use an Unsubscribe App (Unroll Me)
    Are you drowning in unwanted email subscriptions? Use an app that unsubscribes you from some of these newsletters, like Unroll Me. Unroll Me gives you the option to unsubscribe from junk emails, then identifies your subscription emails and neatly combines them into a daily digest email called “The Rollup.” You can get all your newsletters and social notifications at a specific time each day chosen by you.
  2. Create Rules
    Reduce repetitive actions by creating rules in Windows to automatically perform an action on your incoming or outgoing mail messages. For example, you can create a rule to move all messages from your boss to a folder or to delete all messages with specific words in the subject line. The Rules Wizard can help you design rules to manage your messages so you’ll stay organized and up to date by using templates for frequently used rules, but it is not necessary to use a rule template. You can also create and customize your own rule without the Rules Wizard.
  3. Undo Send
    Gmail has the option to undo sending an email message. Set up “Undo Send” in Gmail by clicking “Settings” and then checking the box next to “Enable Undo Send” in the “Undo Send” section and save your changes. The next time you need to undo sending a message, click “undo” when “Your message has been sent” along with the option to Undo or View message.
  4. Snooze Emails and Reminder (SaneBox)
    Make your email work for you and prevent endless interruptions with a cloud-based tool like SaneBox. SaneBox learns what email is important to you and filters out what isn’t. SaneBox will also unsubscribe you from mailing lists and individual senders, set reminders if someone doesn’t reply, let you see all sent mail that has no reply, and defer an email (snooze) until any future time.
    Automatic Priority (Gmail)
    Choose which emails need to be prioritized by clicking “settings” in Gmail. Click the Inbox tab and select Priority Inbox. You can also choose other inbox settings here, like if you want to see importance markers or not. After making your selections click “Save Changes” at the bottom of the page.
  5. Mute Conversations
    Whether you need to hide personal communications while you’re at the office or you want to dismiss conversations from certain colleagues, you can mute a conversation in Gmail. Open the conversation, click “More” in the drop-down menu and choose “Mute”. Any new messages sent to that conversation thread will not appear in your inbox but will be added to the archive.

These hacks should help you to reduce the amount of time you spend in your email inbox every day. They will help you to work smarter and stay focused on your tasks at hand instead of being distracted and spending time on repetitive email actions.