Welcome to the first lesson of Inbox Zero Academy! We’re thrilled to have you here and can’t wait to help you bring sanity to your email life. By the end of this course, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge and tools to get your inbox under control, and to get the most out of the email you send. We’re going to start strong today with a game-changing process used by the most efficient emailers out there, our three-step Scan-Block-Ask system:
Step 1: Scan
Scan your inbox for emails with urgent and important items, and take care of them first thing in the morning. Then, close your email and work on your top priorities.
Step 2: Block
Block 30 to 60 minutes later in the day to process your non-urgent and less important emails. Having a set time in your calendar will help you stay focused on your tasks and ensures that you won’t miss or forget about emails.
Step 3: Ask
Ask yourself if clearing your Inbox is the best use of time right now. Do this every time you are in your email and every time you think about opening your email. If the answer is no, wait until the next block of time that you scheduled for email.
This is one of the hardest lesson in this program (I know, “and they spring this on me day 1...really?”) because it’s asking you to make new habits and break old ones. To make it easier, do a practice run with the Scan-Block-Ask system the next time you open your inbox, and don’t forget to add blocks of time for email into your calendar!
You’re reading the Inbox Zero Academy. It’s a series of lessons to help you improve email life.
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What is SaneBox
SaneBox is a simple service that analyzes your past behavior (which emails you open, which you respond to, how quickly, how often, etc) and determines the importance of incoming emails without ever looking at the content (only the headers). It moves unimportant emails out of the Inbox into a separate folder called SaneLater and summarizes them in a digest. It works anywhere you check your email (since it's just an email folder).