How to attain Inbox Zero

I’m not great with email, I admit. I often have lots of mail in my inbox waiting to be responded to or archived. At some point I had more than 2000 unread emails in my Gmail account. Most of those emails were unimportant newsletters, and updates from the social media sites I’m on.

I’m wary of deleting emails because I usually think that I might need them in the future or that worry that I might delete an important email. In today’s post, I’ll share how I go about moving the emails out of the way without getting rid of them.

  1. Type “label:inbox is:unread” without quotes into Gmail’s search box and press enter. Gmail will display 20 or so messages.
  2. Click the arrow on the Select button and choose “All”.
  3. Next, you’ll want to select all the unread messages in your inbox, click “Select All Conversations That Match the Results”.
  4. Click the “More” button. You’ll see a number of actions that you can take. Click on “Mark as Read” to mark all the unread messages as read.
  5. Optional: You can archive all the unread messages to get them out of the way by clicking the “Archive” icon.

The steps above will select ALL unread messages and mark them as read. It is possible to select or un-select all sorts of messages using advanced search filters. For example you can select messages that you received before a particular date or messages that contain attachments. Head over to Google’s support page here for more information.

There you have it, this is how I clear out my Inbox regularly. I hope this information is useful to you. Thank you for reading.

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