May 17, 2013
Keep only unread emails in inbox. This one is for advanced users only, but I have hacked my Gmail inbox so that only unread emails are in my inbox. What this means is that if I read an email and don't act on it, it disappears from my inbox. That forces me to act now, or I will lose the email to the ether. This is built-in motivation to actually process the email, and in practice this helps you keep your inbox empty.
When it comes to mobile mail, today is one of the best times in recent memory to find a better solution. But changing email habits, even when they're bad, turned out to be tougher than I expected.
Abusive Subject Line Behavior
Intention: By typing the word "URGENT," "ACTION ITEM" or "READ ME" in the subject line, she is hoping to stress the actionable items of her email. Her message is clear. Perception: Her subject line implies that she presumes her message is more important than any other correspondence you might have received. The perception is that she is over-confident and thinks very little of your time.
When you walk to your mailbox at home, do you glance at the mail then leave it in the box? No, and in fact, you can be fined for mailbox obstruction if you don't pull the mail out (I speak from experience). Once you've got the mail inside your home, do you look at it and throw it away or do you organize it? You need certain things, but what about coupons and junk mail? Do you keep that? Some do, but few should.