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Organize E-mail and Increase Productivity

Lesson 2 of 6

Tools to Maintain Your Inbox


Organize E-mail and Increase Productivity

Lesson 2 of 6

Tools to Maintain Your Inbox


Lesson Info

Tools to Maintain Your Inbox

How many of you have heard of inbox? Zero? Yeah, okay, what do you can you tell me what it means? Like you don't like what it is like, you have nothing left to do like you that's all checked and filed away and keep up. So unless you're actually is to sort of meanings, which, like as a productivity expert, I didn't even really realize until maybe a year ago until I started really diving into email, decluttering and helping clients. But there's a productivity expert, his name's, merlin man, and he did a famous google talk back in two thousand seven, and he coined the term inbox zero and people I think called on really quickly, and they're like, yes, no e mails, which he does talk about, but it's actually, in reference to the amount of time your brain is in your in box, and he said that time and attention are finite, and why win? A employee confuses his inbox with the to do list productivity suffers, so the reason I have a plan on the computer is so your brain is not in the in box, which ...

is the other sort of meaning to inbox zero which I find really, really fascinating, and in a bit we're going to talk about wind to check email, you know, sort of um, setting boundaries, things like that and yes, it is good to keep very little e mails in the inbox, but it actually reverse are one of the other meanings is keeping your brain out of your in box. The cool thing about email decluttering is theirs on lee a few things you can actually do with any given email. So this is the stuff we're talking about, where you could go home and do the stuff today it's like super duper easy so the first thing you khun dio is, you can reply, it seems like, uh, you can reply to an email, but there's a caveat. So if the email is going to take two minutes or less to respond to go ahead and do that, um, you know, it's ah, quick reply, yes, I'm going to come to that meeting, you know? Yes, I got that information, a quick sentence here there, go ahead and replied to the email, the next thing you can do is you can delete the email now a lot of people are in the habit of not deleting part of that is because you're worried about losing e mails you're worried about what if I need that information later, we're going to talk a little bit about that, but the search features are so amazing now with gmail and with apple mail that you really don't need to keep that email around and instead of deleting it you can put it in archive which you're going to be able to find in g e mails all male that's where all of the archive male is under all male but we really need to get in the habit of deleting the email I want to talk next about doing it later so that's the third thing you could do with email you can do it later so the great thing about this is you don't have time you might need to get information from someone else you might need to ask your husband hey, can we go to this so we're going to do it later this is part partly technical which we're going to set up right now um and we're going to dive into the stuff a little bit more so I'm just going to pull up gmail and how many of you guys use folders to organize emails? Yes, so these air folders that were going to create they're very easy to dio so we're just going to go again to the settings here and we're going to go to labels so again, this is where gmail for me traipsing up a little because they call it a label in apple male they call it a folder so I'm just going to go ahead and create three labels so we're just going to go here, create new label, and the first woman is going to be called to dio, and I'm not going to nested under anything. I'm just going to create it and it's going to good come right here. S o the next one I'm going to create is pending and you guys can name these whatever you want to like to do could be action for you pending could be awaiting response, really? It just depends on what you want to call these. And then the last one we're going to create is, um, to read to listen now, the reason we're creating these is because when we have something that's going to take longer than two minutes, we want to be able to put those somewhere, right? We want to clear out the inbox, and we just want to be able to go back to those later. Does anybody have any questions about creating those was pretty easy. Right? Okay, cool. Yes. My fear with those kinds of folders is I won't go back and look at them. So we have to create new habits. Um, it's. Just like anything. You know, you just have to learn something new there's a really great quote, I think, it's by benjamin franklin. Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results equals insanity so we just want to try something now ah and see see how it works but I think this could be a game changer for a lot of people um so let's see how many of you guys have heard the the of the acronym ohio only handle it once so it's sort of like you're going through your email inbox and you're looking at all your e mails and studies say that we actually go back to the same email and re read it to three five times which is a huge time waster so this is the reason we want to get those e mails out of the in box number one the subject line is terrible they don't really tell us what the neck action is it could be a really long thread and it has nothing to do the subject line has nothing to do with what's in the email so again this is really why we want to go ahead and process thes things into actionable folders now I will tell you if you are to put something in the two do it should go on your test management sistemas well so we'll talk a little bit more about that but I just want to go ahead and give you a heads up on that um so let's go back tio keynote first quick sec so luckily this is not rocket science, even though it feels really technical, we're talking about folders and things like that it's really again, not that hard. So how we want to process our email inbox? We're going to work from the top down instead of picking and choosing what you want to respond to, which takes time because oftentimes we go, oh, we can do that right now, so we're just going to pick that we just want to start from the top and work our way down, and that way we take care of every single thing. Um, the the one thing I will say is, um, it's, sort of like when you are physically organizing a space, you start in one area of the room and you work your way around it's the same exact thing, we just want to make sure that we hit everything, so we want to ask ourselves what the next action item is. So what? What is this email? What? What needs to happen with it? And then we can process accordingly. So the goal isn't actually again to answer each email, we just want to make sure that we process it, which is the good thing, because often times were really busy during the day, and we don't have timeto answer every email that comes through through our inbox um so let's go back to g bell I just want to show you guys a few shortcuts productivity experts actually say here fingers should never leave the keyboard you know you should know all these amazing things and you'll save tons of time which I think there's really great great shortcuts which we're going to talk about some right now and what I do is I pick one a week and just tried out in that way it sort of becomes ingrained in my daily habit so let's just do a couple the first one which I really really like it's c which is composed so reply is just are that's really easy let's do one of my favorites which I'm just going to click on and if you hit the it actually pulls up or drop down box which asks where you want that email to go which is my definite favorite on dh then what's really cool is shift question mark brings up all of these so you guys can actually have ah cici right at your disposal so let's continue in power point um so again definitely test those guys out have some fun with then so the three most dangerous words in the english language just in case have you guys heard of the minimalists? Yeah ok, so for those of you guys who haven't it's these two dudes and they are amazing they basically got rid of all their possessions and go around the country and talk about it it's it's it's it's extreme yes there are there's a minimalist lifestyle for everyone but it is very very, very inspiring but anyhow I've seen them talk many times and this is one of my favorite sort of quotes from them so because you guys are going to now have your notifications turned off you have to actually go in and check your email you're not going to go live with the email inbox open so we actually have to set boundaries on wind to check our email um I would actually suggest checking maybe once an hour I know that might sound like crazy talk it might take some time to get used to but I really want you to encourage maybe starting there and tweaking it you might find you can go longer you might find that's a really good break time on our okay I'm going to take a break I'm gonna go and check those e mails so what you're going to do during that one check in per hour is you're going to process all of those e mails now remember you are not going tio do all of them were just putting them in their home and we're transferring information but we're not actually we don't have to answer everything there might be some things that again take too long to respond to so we're gonna put those in there appropriate folder um and then I would suggest once twice a day you're going to go into those action folders that to do the pending to read and you're going to process those so we're going to tackle maybe the bigger two duis or we're going to transfer those two year like bigger test management system we might get rid of that email at that point because we've transferred the note on our two duis and then we don't need that email anymore again remember we don't want to get in the habit of leaving those emails in those because you can't prioritize emails you can't move things around according teo what's more important the subject line again is terrible so we really want to try toe clear those guys out okay so um the cool thing about setting boundaries is there are helpers that can help us do that so the first one I want to show you guys is inbox pause and this is something that integrates with gmail so gmail has an amazing just sweet of acts as well is just great extensions and things that other people have created that you can use with gmail so let's bring it back up to gmail and let me show you so do you guys see it's right? I guess I can use my mess because a so this guy right here pause so what this is is it's called inbox pause and when I hit that this guy comes up and it says let's pause your inbox great so what I can do is I can I don't personally do this the auto responder part but if you were nervous about you know, someone e mailing you and you not give that getting back to them right away you could set that boundary and say, hey, I'm actually getting productive and I'm not going to your email right now in case someone is very you know uh sort of has high expectations on you to return the email you can also move your messages to the inbox on his schedule and for whatever reason I can scroll down but you consent all these different times so you can make it so that it checks it on the hour s o n e I'm just going to click out of there and if I were to actually pause the inbox it would say inbox paused it would let me know hey, we're only checking email when you told us to so you would know I'm not getting any new email because I've said it to do that the next really cool thing is called away find um and it's this guy right here and this is for when you actually are good about not being in your email inbox and you've been really great and you actually don't want to even open it up but say you again you're working on a project. You need to get notified if a meeting changes things like that away. Find is an app where you khun, go ahead and tell it who you need to get notified by, and it will text you or call you instead of sending you an email because you're not checking your e mails. So those are two really great abs. That sort of, you know, their little trainers for us. They help us out because we're trying to be really good about all of this stuff.

Class Description

Email can quickly overwhelm a workday and prevent you from getting actual work done – but you don’t have to let it control you! Organize Email and Increase Productivity with Beth Penn, you’ll learn how to manage everything that comes through your inbox so you can focus on what’s important.

In this class, Beth will share her best tips for setting up a system to manage your inbox in an on-going way. 

You’ll learn how to:

  • Identify the best time to respond, defer, archive and delete emails
  • Set up rules and organizational systems for Gmail and Apple Mail
  • Achieve the elusive Inbox Zero

You’ll learn about a whole range of productivity tools that will minimize the amount of time you waste checking emails while staying sane and organized. You’ll get more time back in your day to focus on your business.

If you want to spend more time focusing on what really matters, don’t miss Beth Penn’s class Organize Email and Increase Productivity.  



This class was tremendously helpful! So many great tips.

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