Your inbox can be the number one productivity zapper. If you constantly have it open, have the app on your phone, notifications on loud, watching the emails roll in, it's only a matter of time before you're in "inbox overwhelm" or, worse, you're stuck in your inbox for hours upon end. And guess what, when you're spending 2, 3, maybe even 4 hours a day on emails alone, everything else in the business is on hold, and you're probably missing opportunities.

So if you want to avoid "inbox overwhelm", here are some of my top tips.

1. Your inbox should be a place for emails that require action and nothing more! If you have 1000 old emails sitting in your inbox that you are keeping "just for info", then how are you ever going to be entirely sure you've dealt with everything? You need a filing system that's effective and easy to navigate, one that works for you. So if you've read it, replied, and it's dealt with, put it in a file and let your inbox breathe! You can even call the file "Saved Inbox". The emails will always be there, just neatly tucked away.

2. Set up rules. Rules are the easiest way to free up space in your inbox. For example, if there is a reoccurring email that you receive daily or weekly that you want to look at, but it's not time-critical or in need of a response, you can create a rule to file it automatically. You'll still see the unread email notification in your folder, so you can go in to look at it when you have some time to spare.

3. Have an unsubscribing spree. There's probably 40 emails you get every week that you subscribed to unknowingly once upon a time, and now they clutter your inbox because you never so much as open them, get them gone or set up a rule to auto-delete from those senders.

4. And now the hardest one of all, and yes, this will hurt a little to begin with. Turn off email notifications on your PC, Laptop and Phone. You will be far more productive if you set yourself specific times each day to manage your emails. Not only will this speed up your email management, but it will also give you complete focus on the other areas of the business when you aren't worried about the constant email notifications. Checking them three times a day is plenty.

I promise you, these things will make a massive difference to you and your business, and you might even grow to love your organised inbox just as I do. Of course, you could also get yourself a kick-ass Virtual Assistant who can do all of this for you. Just imagine opening that inbox on a Monday morning to an organised haven, ahhhhh yes!

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