With all the messages, extra features, options, and add-ons that come bundled with owning a Gmail account it’s easy to get your inbox (and indeed your head) all muddled up in an unhealthy dose of disorganization.
Every time you stop to check and reply emails or organize your mailbox, you lose focus. It will take you at least 23 minutes to get your head back into the game, enough time get lunch, or better still get on with that productive task. There’s a way out of this constant spiral of disorganization and confusion. And for the best part, it’s not as complicated as you might have imagined.
Gmail the clutter free way
Let’s face the facts, you’re going to get tons of emails daily, and most of them will be unimportant. Thankfully, the design team at Google thought about this and provided a handy set of features to segregate what’s essential from what’s not.
Configure your inbox to show important messages first
By default, Gmail is configured to sort emails into primary, social, promotion, and updates sections. While this works great as a primary spam filter, it might be inefficient at keeping you focused on what’s important. For that, you need to help Gmail figure out what’s important using the ‘Important Label’ function.
On the left of every message, there’s an icon to mark that message as important. Once a message is marked important, Gmail recognizes that the sender probably sends you important messages and will prioritize messages from that sender in the future.
Furthermore, you can tweak your inbox to display only important, starred or unread messages first from the settings menu. This way everything else that’s trivial is pushed further down the list.
Push some things straight to archive where they belong
Some emails – think receipts for recurring bills – don’t need to land in your inbox in the first place. Their place is in your archives, and you can configure Gmail to reroute these messages automatically
To do this, create a filter by opening the settings menu and selecting the blocked access tab. Once there, click the ‘Create a New Filter’ button and specify the filter tag – what will help Gmail identify the batch of emails you want to automatically archive. In the case of receipts for recurring bills, you could simply specify emails headers containing receipts. Next, define what the filter should do by marking the ‘skip to inbox’ box. Viola! No more pesky receipt emails in your inbox.
Label what’s important
Eventually, the number of important messages will stack up, but the good news is you can still stay organized by leveraging Gmail’s labels feature.
Labels are like banners you put on an email to give it a makeshift classification. These banners can be color coded for easy identification and sorting when you browse through your mail. It’s however fair to note that labels don’t categorize emails or make them go into separate folders What they do is provide a hint on what it contains and the importance of its contents as specified by you.
Creating a new label is straightforward. Click the ‘Create a New Label’ option on your homepage’s left sidebar. Name your label and pick your preferred color. Once set, you can apply labels directly from your inbox page by clicking the labels icon on the side of each message.
Overall, it’s easy to see that organizing your Gmail account is not rocket science. All it takes is a moment or two and a knowledge of what you need to do. We’ve provided you with the knowledge now’s the time to take a moment or two.