Reading Time: 2 minutes
A couple of days ago I promised you four steps to conquering your email. In the last few days, I’ve written about three: learning to controlling the information using a process, learning to control the technology, and learning to control your behavior. They are easy in the sense that they are not complicated but they may difficult to execute. Probably the hard part is going to be in changing your behavior. That’s never easy. But I promise you that it will introduce some peace and serenity into your life.
The 4th step is about easily sorting the important from the unimportant. So of course you need a good spam filter. If you are getting more than a few spam messages a day, you should look for another solution. The technology has advanced and it’s worth spending some time on.  But for messages that aren’t spam, one of the easiest ways to sort the important from the unimportant is to separate messages from people and “robo-messages.” Robo-messages including things like coupons, newsletters, notifications, marketing messages). 
Some people use “rules” in their email client so that some messages automatically go into a certain folder. This is one way to handle it, but personally I don’t like it. It’s bad enough to see how many unread messages are in my inbox. If I had those high numbers in other folders too, it would stress me out. Plus it wouldn’t be as efficient if I had to click around through a bunch of folders to see what needed my attention.  Another concern is that I might never get around to looking at some of those folders. So the number of emails in them will grow and grow, stressing me out and perhaps causing problems with my email client.
There is now a much better solution to “robo-mails” and I think it’s the biggest time saver I have seen in a long time. It’s called Otherinbox. If you haven’t gotten yourself an account yet, or an account in a similar tool, I suggest you visit and get one “tout de suite.” In essence, what Otherinbox does is give you different email addresses that you can use for different purposes. So, for example, if I have to set up an account on a shopping website, I can type [email protected] into the username box and Otherinbox will automatically create that mailbox for me. Then, any email that I receive from that website Otherinbox will automatically sort it into my new inbox.
Tomorrow I’ll write one more post on this topic. In that post I will expand a little bit about a topic I get a lot of questions about:  filing your email messages…