Business Ops August 1, 2020

What's your Inbox Zero strategy?

Terry Xu @txu

How do to manage your inbox?

Does your inbox make you feel a bit stressed?

What's your Inbox Zero strategy?
  1. 2

    I unsubscribe from all automated emails and disable all app notifications to email. That's my secret. Beyond that, I don't get many emails, maybe 10/day, and I read them as they arrive.

    1. 1

      what happens if you take a 2-week vacation?

      1. 1

        what is that haha

        I check my emails on my phone, its with me even if I was on vacation.

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  2. 2

    I use GSuite and multiple inboxes feature as Andreas Klinger wrote years ago

    it works quite well, but I did give up a bit on it lately, so I started to learn how can I achieve more zeroness with the power of code, low-code, and automation.

    1. 1

      Great. Lemme study this method.

  3. 2

    Declare email bankruptcy every 2 weeks

    1. 1

      Archive all?

  4. 1

    I use only email to communicate for my work, No phone calls, No chats.

    I achieve Inbox Zero by,
    • Separate email address.
    • Regular schedule to check the email accounts.
    • Having detailed conversations over email that, it has become a habit to communicate more with less number of emails exchanged.
    • Discarding unimportant emails/limiting unimportant emails.

    Fun fact: I've had so many email addresses that, over the past decade when ever I get a new smartphone, my benchmark had been to check the email accounts 'sync' section as the phones used to struggle handling that.

  5. 1

    Inbox 0!? I’m currently on my way to 1 million!! Only 236,000 to go!

    1. 1

      Lol. Do you want to reach 1 million or not?

  6. 1

    I'm just curious here. What's the point to have an inbox Zero?

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      There isn't a point really. "Inbox Zero" was a marketing gimmick that has stuck with a certain audience.

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        Yeah I was wondering. I never had a problem letting emails unread. To me an inbox is a bit like a flow, if you don't catch everything it's fine. But I can understand it bothers some.

    2. 1

      It's feeling a sense of control.

      An analogy could be garbage accumulating in front of my house. Some people would be like I don't care. 1 ton of garbage is the same as 10 tons of garbage. Just don't look at them.

      Others would keep cleaning them as they appear.

      1. 1

        It's like garbage? I mean garbage is smelly, you can get sick because of it, it attracts animals, and if everybody was doing it, we would have many, many problems.

        These are objective consequences of letting your garbage in front of your house. What are the consequences of not "cleaning" your inbox? What are the benefits of "cleaning" it?

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          I know. It's not a great analogy and garbage are not emails. Just trying to illustrate the feeling and stress of having too much unread email causes.

          The benefit to me is to feel blissful when I know there are no undone tasks in my email.

  7. 1

    I spend 30-45 minutes every morning to read my emails, slack messages, WhatsApp messages etc. I do this religiously, resulting in a clean inbox. This is somewhat easy for me as I unsubscribe marketing newsletters every day, if I don't seem them fit my interests, resulting in only 60-75 unread emails every morning.

  8. 1

    Don't hate me. As you can see below, me and inbox zero are. well. not the best of friends.

  9. 1

    My routine:

    1. filter and tag all social media posts (never see them unless I check a folder, which I never check).
    2. Also apply tags to all automated emails and mark them as read (so pretty much any newsletter).
    3. Religiously hit the spam button in gmail. So if I don't recognize something or don't read it, I just click the spam and unsubscribe. It sucks for people with good intentions but I've just gotten used to it now --- sorry!
    4. Click and open only interesting things - the rest get the bulk select and delete treatment.

    Most of the time I only get a few emails from people I really want to hear from -- but once in a while it gets out of hand and I spam block them all lol. I'm very violent with my email routine.

    1. 1

      That's very violent. As long as you don't have FOMO then it's cool. I tend to worry missing important emails that way.

  10. 1


    1. 1

      I think he meant, the new product from Basecamp kids :)

      1. 1

        Yeah I know. but i am not sure if it's gonna solve the problem in the long run. Seems it's clean just because it's a new inbox. The app performance seems much less reliable than gmail given it's running on a single Rails server that DHH is very proud of.

        1. 1

          Have u tried it? The UX is pretty neat and well built. Am pretty confident the team behind it will handle the app performance - and it doesn't seem to be an issue at all right now.

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            Yeah I tried it. I feel it’s an incremental improvement from gmail. will see how it goes in the next few years

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              Personally, having an inbox zero isn't really a goal I'm trying to achieve. But after using Hey for a month, I've gotten to zero 🤷🏻‍♂️

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  11. 1

    I have been practicing inbox zero since the early 1990s before it was cool, back when I was using the elm email program under Unix.

    1. 1

      how about nowadays? so have some cool setup?

      1. 1

        Now I still do inbox zero, but with Gmail. Nothing fancy, just reading or triaging new mail as soon as it arrives, with a few filters and categories thrown in.

        1. 1

          do you unsub from all newsletters manually?

          1. 1

            I rarely unsubscribe from newsletters because I subscribe only to the ones I'm really interested in. But, when i do, I unsubscribe manually.

            1. 1

              thanks for the answers! I am also very careful with newsletters but all the stores I've ever bought from and all the websites that I have an account on are emailing me...