We all love a good declutter at home – what about at work?
Clearing the decks in your hallway, pantry or wardrobe can make an enormous difference to your day-to-day life and have you feeling on top of your game as you begin each new day.
Now you have the skills, a good clear-out can be applied to other areas of your life as well, such as at work. Whether it’s your home office or away, are you so bogged down by the clutter in your inbox that you can’t find anything and be productive?
HB resident decluttering whizz Tilly Roberts turns her expertise to the ubiquitous inbox, helping to free your mind from the detritus of daily email.
Tilly’s top tips for decluttering your inbox
1. Filing foundations
Create relevant folders e.g. business, personal, medical, financial, house, kids etc. At work, create headings that are project based and task driven.
2. File away!
Move emails you want to keep into the folders - you can always go back to find them here. If you don’t need to action an email immediately, either file or delete it.
As often as you can. We all get flooded with junk and even when it’s content or information you’re interested in, too much makes visiting your inbox even more stressful.
Create a block of templates that summarise your working schedule, e.g.
- your signature with mobile/phone number for when people really need to reach you (include days you don’t work so you're not bombarded when not checking your emails)
- standard requests and replies for frequently used work processes – prepare, format and save in a word document and keep handy on your desktop to copy and paste
5. Mass delete
Don’t be afraid to delete things. Choose at date and dispose of all emails before then. Alot of it is usually clutter and if you really need it you can usually find it in the trash it or have it resent.
6. Think twice, send once
When sending an email think carefully to request/discuss everything you need to cover off. This cuts down back-and-forth conversations that clog up your inbox and your brain space!
7. Keep it up
Once your email is free of clutter, bask in the joy of a manageable load and resolve to keep it that way. Assess and set aside the best times each day for your to check email and action as per above. Set yourself a goal to return it to an uncluttered state before you leave each day.
8. Give yourself a break!
Consider turning of email notifications when on holiday or over the weekend. It makes it very difficult to unwind if all you can see before you is a sea of emails!
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