Home Life Blog: Cleaning Out Your Emails - How To Get Down To Zero

February 14, 2016

Cleaning Out Your Emails - How To Get Down To Zero


A few weeks ago on Instagram, I posted this photo of my newly cleaned out mailbox.  I was very proud of myself for finally accomplishing this after 4+ years!  That is a long time!  

Why didn't I do this sooner?  It seemed too difficult in my head to get rid of 4,000+ emails, but once I came up with a system to do it, it actually wasn't that hard.  

Here's how you can get rid of your emails quickly too!

Unsubscribe to Emails

One thing I noticed about my emails was not all of them were getting read.  Not once, but several times I found myself deleting  an email from the same sender.  I eventually realized I was not interested in getting emails from those senders anymore, and immediately hit the unsubscribe button!  This prevented new, unwanted emails from making their way back into my mailbox and less emails I had to go through to delete. 

If you're not sure how to unsubscribe, follow these simple steps.
  1. Click on an email from a sender you want to unsubscribe from.
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the email and look for an Unsubscribe button.  (This is usually very small since they really don't want you to unsubscribe.  I've also seen them have the link as click here next to the small word unsubscribe.  Very tricky!)
  3. Click the unsubscribe and offer your feedback, if necessary, to complete the request.
  4. Congrats!  You just Unsubscribed! 
If you ever change your mind about unsubscribing, you can always sign up again to receive emails.

Getting Rid of Spam Emails

Never click on emails you are not sure of.  Instead, visit the website directly from your internet browser or highlight the email and move it over to your Junk or Spam folder by right clicking and then select  the "report spam" option in the drop down menu.  

Moving the spam emails to the Spam / Junk folders will stop you from getting those emails again, which will clean up your mailbox a little more!

Make Folders for Important Emails  

The big thing that helped me get rid of so many emails in my inbox was folders.  Only save the emails that are important.  

Do this the easy way.  

First, make folders and giving them the proper name.  If you're saving Bank Statements then that's what your folder should be titled as.

Then, use the search box to type in the names of emails you would like to save.  For example, if you want to save all your Pinterest emails, simply type in Pinterest in the search box.  This will highlight all emails with the word Pinterest in it so you can easily find them in your mailbox. 

If you have some promotional emails or coupon code emails, that you want to save and use later, then make a folder for them too.  Make a generic title like Codes, Retail or Deals.  You will have everything important in one place so you can easily find the code you need at a store or for an online order.  

Hit the Delete All Button

You might have noticed by now how I have not talked about deleting any mails.  That's because it's easier to leave that for the end.  So far you've, unsubscribed to emails you do not want to receive anymore, moved spam or junk emails out of your inbox and made folders for those important emails you want to keep.  You're inbox should only have one kind of email left and those should be the ones to delete. 

To do this, just click the Select All button located in the header, this might just be a little box next to the Subject or Date title.  Then click Delete.  You should then see this message after...



If this is too nerve wrecking then I would suggest you scroll through your emails just to make sure you didn't miss any important ones you need before hitting the button.  You can still have them highlighted and just unselect the ones you want to keep.  

Empty Trash & Spam Folder

While you're in the deleting mode, go ahead and hit the empty button for your Trash and Spam folders.  No need to go into the folder.  Simply right click on the folder and select "Empty".  Easy Peasy!  

One last thing...

Don't forget to keep up with this system!  Add emails to folders right after you're done with them and delete unwanted emails right away.  Doing all this will ensure you never see 4000+ emails again!


If you have more than one email (like me), repeat these steps so you can finally see the No Emails message in your inbox too!  

How do you manage your emails?  Do you fill up your mailbox or do you get rid of them right away?



I've linked up this post to these awesome parties!

37 comments:

  1. This is definitely something I need to do. My biggest issue is thinking every email is important... but I think organizing them in folders is a great idea! Thanks for the motivation!

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    1. I know what you mean, Meg! I was keeping my Pinterest emails and finally wondered why? I have all the Pinterest info I need on my Pinterest account. So, I finally deleted ALL of them! Glad I could motivate you! :)

      Delete
  2. I try to keep up, but sometimes I look at the number and wonder where the heck it all came from. A few weeks ago I cleaned out my boxes - even though I was not physically holding them deleting them felt like I had put down a great weight.

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    1. Hi Michelle! It really does feel good to finally delete all those emails! Especially unsubscribing to the ones you don't even open anymore. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a nice weekend.

      Delete
  3. I check my emails twice a day and make sure they are cleaned out in the morning and before bed.

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    1. Thanks for the tip, Rebecca! I'll need to start doing that now that my mailbox is cleaned out.

      Delete
  4. Oh my goodness I need to do this. I have 3 emails and 2 of them I rarely check so yes there are thousands of emails when I go to log on. I get overwhelmed and close the mail and don't return for another month or so...I will have to start cleaning out my emails! Thanks

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    1. Good luck Jenn! I promise it's easier than it looks!

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  5. Great tips, Jessica. I am the world's worst about this! What's going to really help me is to put emails in folders as soon as I open them--thank you!

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    1. Thank you Susan! Folders really helped me! Everything has a place in my mailbox now. :)

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  6. I am a hoarder by nature and My email reflect that, I use a tool called unroll.me to unsubscribe from unwanted subscriptions and I simply scam he title if it doensnt grab me im off. And still my email inbox is top heavy lol. Because I receive a couple hundred emails a day .....So I deffo am gonna do this this weekend cheers!

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    1. Great to hear it Julie! I also receive a lot of emails, so this is what worked best for me. Hopefully it can work for you too.

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  7. Great tips. I have 4 email addresses so I need these! Thanks for sharing at the Thursday Favorite Things blog hop. Your post has been pinned.
    Cheers,
    Jennifer

    Http://awellstyledlife.com

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    1. Thank you so much Jennifer!! So happy to have my post pinned! :)

      Delete
  8. It's funny that I'm reading this today, because I just cleaned out a lot of my email accounts yesterday! I can verify that your suggestions are great, because I did a lot of those things! I have not yet ever created new folders to save mail though, so that's a new thoughts and something I should look into. Your post motivates me to keep on top of my mail.

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    1. Folders are key Laura! They are like the labeled baskets in a home. They hold what needs to be kept in a designated space so you always know where to put things or find them! So glad I could motivate you!

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  9. I have been putting off doing this to my inbox for way too long. I start and then life happens. Thanks for reminding me that I really should get to it, and for the great tips!

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    1. You're so welcome Amanda! I was exactly like you. I would try to delete each email one by one, but would never finish out of frustration. Hope these tips will help you reach that zero goal this time around!

      Delete
  10. Omg, I so need to do this! Thanks for the reminder

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  11. This is awesome! While I stay pretty well on top of my emails, my husband has something like 8000+ emails and it drives me insane. I've tried to clean them out for him before, but it takes so long! I love your method of deleting everything AFTER you organize. So smart.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Hi Morgan! 8000+ emails could be very frustrating to try and get rid of at once. I promise you after you make folders and have him unsubscribe from things he doesn't care about anymore, it will be a lot easier for both of you to stay on top of it!

      Delete
  12. I struggle with deleting emails. I love the unsubscribe idea, I need to do that more often. Every 6 months, I end up spending a whole Sunday cleaning out my email boxes. I should really stay on top of this. Great ideas!

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    1. Thanks Rachel. The unsubscribe button was a life saver! After I did just that, I automatically saw less emails coming in, which made it easier for me to organize the ones I already had. After you follow these steps I would suggest a weekly clean out instead of waiting 6 months. This would make it easier to manage.

      Delete
  13. Thank you for sharing on Monday Madness link party! I love a tidy inbox, it means I am in control of it and it's not in control of me! I love this post so much it is a feature on next week's party! Hope to see you there!

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    1. Thank you so much, Sharon!! I'm so excited you liked my post so much to feature it! I'll be sure to stop by like I do every week. :)

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  14. I don't know if I will ever manage to get to a zero inbox. I get keen every now and then and try to give it a go. I usually manage to get about half way.

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    1. Hi Purfylle. I believe you can do it, especially if I did it. :) What you could also do to make things easier, is start off with making folders for the important things and putting your emails in those folders. After you're done, then you can delete all emails that are left. When a new email comes in, decide if it's something you are really interested in and if the answer is no, then you can unsubscribe as they come in. Hope it helps & I know you can do it!

      Delete
  15. This is the one thing I have been avoiding doing, cleaning out my emails. I seriously need to.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. It could seem like a lot of work, especially if you try to delete them one by one. I would spend hours trying to delete all my emails and avoid deleting the ones I really wanted to keep. That's how I came up with this system, and finished everything in less than an hour! I know you can do it, too, Tamara!

      Delete
  16. Oh boy, is this something that I have to do, and soon! I have to get my inbox cleaned out so badly! I'll do it with my spring cleaning, LOL.

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    1. That sounds like a great idea, Jennifer! Everything gets way easier to manage after all this!

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  17. All good tips! I find that e-mail and blog comments are the #1 thing that I find a hard time to keep up with. Pinning and tweeting this. Happy Friday!

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    1. I'm still trying to figure out an organization method for my comments too, Lindsey. I'll let you all know if I come up with something. Thanks so much for the social media love! I so appreciate you sharing!

      Delete
  18. Thanks for sharing these great tips with us at Merry Monday. I haven't cleaned out my email in years. Just seems like it would take too long.

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    1. That's exactly why I ignored doing it for so long, but this system really helped me get rid of everything fast! Took me about an hour if not less.

      Delete
  19. If I had to get rid of 4,000 e-mails I would die!! Sure!! Great tips, I started last week unsubscribing but need to work on the rest. Thanks! If you did it, I can!

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