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Have SaneBox automatically archive or trash non-Inbox emails for you

How to have SaneBox automatically archive or trash emails for you

Click on Show More.

Click on Folders.

Then, click on the cog icon to open the folder settings as seen below.

Set up your Sane folders to archive or trash after a certain amount of time

Details of controls

Automatically move old emails from this folder: When enabled, SaneBox will move emails once they have reached a certain age.
To Folder: Choose which folder you’d like the older emails to be moved to. This will include only archive and trash folders we see in your email account on your host’s email server.
After: Set for us to auto archive or trash emails older than anywhere from 1 day to 3 months old.

I thought SaneBox wants me to process each email myself?

We do want you to process the email in your Inbox in real time and we do want you to process the email in your SaneLater folder when it is convenient. But you can set up DIY (Do It Yourself) folders with specific types of emails in them that could be processed more automatically.

The idea behind SaneBox comes from the GTD (Get Things Done) philosophy which indicates that looming items like unprocessed emails hang over you and slow you down. GTD suggests that you quickly triage every new item deciding to either:

  • Deal with it now
  • Snooze it until it’s convenient
  • Delegate it to a more appropriate person
  • Set a follow up reminder using a SaneReminder address either in CC or BCC

And then get the processed item out of view by either:

  • Deleting if you’ll never refer to it again
  • Archive it if you may need to refer to it in the future
  • File it under a hand-made folder/label (equivalent to archiving but more categorical)

SaneBox helps by making sure the Inbox email you are triaging is only the most important stuff. This avoids interruptions that would otherwise distract you from more important tasks.

We then move the less important email to SaneLater where you should apply the GTD paradigm when convenient. To help with that we suggest you create a digest schedule to remind you to do it and give you tools to triage them quickly. You can do this from the Notifications icon under Settings to General, from your SaneBox menu.

Aha! So this is for SaneNews and my DIY (Do It Yourself) folders?

Exactly! Those folders contain types of emails that might not need to be preserved forever.

Remember, GTD says to get as much out of your mind as possible. Emails that are only helpful for a short period of time are the perfect candidates for that. Remember that just like in your physical life there isn’t a reason to save your old newspapers once you’ve read them, there isn’t usually a reason to keep old newsletters or sale leaflets or emails from strangers offering you things and services you will never need.

Common use cases for automatic deletion

  • Newsletters after 1 months
  • Marketing Emails after 1 month
  • Logs and alerts after 2 months or 2 weeks (depending on the type of alert)

Common use cases for automatic archival

  • travel documents after 3 months

Situations where you should not automatically cleanup emails

  • Receipts should be left indefinitely in their destination DIY folder.
  • Processing your SaneLater folder creates healthy email habits so we’d highly recommend still setting aside a block of time each day to process emails out of your SaneLater folder either by using your email client or our Digest. If you do decide to have us trash your SaneLater emails, we’d recommend an automatic setting no less than 3 months.
  • Emails that have been automatically forwarded to a coworker should not be automatically archived or deleted, so you have a paper trail of that action.

And what do I do when I don’t want to be distracted by any new email? Even Inbox email?

Just turn on Do Not Disturb. When this is active, all new email will be moved to @SaneDoNotDisturb so you can even have your email client open and still not get tortured. In a world where you are constantly inundated with distractions, SaneBox allows you to focus. Learn more about Do Not Disturb.


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