Sunday, November 2, 2014

Zip. Zero. Nada. #fail #inboxproblems #dirtylaundry

October 24th. Inbox 7,000 and something. Ugh. I hated my inbox. My friends kept talking about their zero inboxes. I had #inboxenvy. I secretly wanted to say SHUT UP about your inbox already. Too much to do and I thought it would take me months, no YEARS to organize my inbox. When I left my previous district, I walked away from over 5,000 in my inbox. I was hopeless. People laughed a little when they saw it. I carried on. 

I consider myself to be pretty organized and efficient, with the exception of my mail. But since it really didn't affect anyone but me, I deleted as much as I could and ignored it. My friend Joe said, "It's not a file cabinet!" "Of course it is," I replied. 

I think it was fear. I was afraid to delete and archive. I was afraid I would lose something important. I couldn't let it go.

Then, I was asked to lead a Google workshop for administrators. First topic? Gmail! Ugh. How could I teach them about Gmail when I clearly couldn't manage my inbox? Their questions ranged from finding things to keeping their inbox neat and organized. I could already hear them laughing when I opened my inbox with 7,000+ emails. This would be worse than standing in front of them in my underwear. 

So I started deleting. Did some searching for things I receive daily like air quality alerts and wonders of the day. That helped. I changed a few little settings. I figured if I deleted a little every day I would get there.

I got to 752. That was better. I could live with that. I didn't think I would be laughed out of the room. 

And then I read Joe Wood's post Gmail Search Tips as I was researching ways to teach Gmail. The last tip was my favorite and resulted in about 300 archived messages. I tried a few more ideas and I got to 176. Progress! 
Could I do it? Could this email #fail girl get there? 

And yes (my other Gmail)

I can't even believe it myself.

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