I have had this big dream of reaching inbox zero for awhile now. I am going to call it a big dream instead of what it really was, a lingering thunderstorm cloud looming over my head, because I have finally turned this big dream into my reality!!! If there is any time in my life that calls for a little Taylor Swift surprised face it is this moment.
That, my friends, is what inbox zero looks like. For some people this is an easy and constant state of being. For me, this was a major struggle. I had over 4,400 emails chilling in my inbox. The task to organize my gmail just seemed too gigantic to do anything about it. I just ignored the problem daily and convinced myself that one day I would reach inbox zero. How I thought I was going to reach this solution by ignoring the growing number of Groupon promotions and Pinterest notifications that were accumulating by the minute I have no idea.
On August 1, 2012 I sent myself an email with the subject of “Inbox Zero” and a link to this article. I discovered this email unopened during my 2+ hour marathon of inbox clean out. Over seven months ago I at least thought about trying to get to inbox zero enough to email myself and never read it. Way to go, Jessica!
Here are some things I forgot about and new perspectives I discovered on my journey to inbox zero.
- The Rocktown Rollers dominated my inbox. So many emails with board meeting recaps, line-ups for bouts, inspirational quotes, league drama and bullshit. I totally forgot how much that team dominated my life through practice, events, and my inbox.
- The different phases of relationships. One of the reasons I couldn’t just delete all my emails and start fresh is because I am a memory whore. I’m sentimental and years of emails with people couldn’t just be deleted. I sorted my sentimental emails into different folders to enjoy when I’m feeling nostalgic. It’s strange to look back at the beginnings of a new friendship or the middle of a romantic relationship you’re no longer in.
- I was applying for jobs for over a year before I finally quit. The way I felt at the end of my time in Harrisonburg was building for over a year. No wonder my emotions were so intense.
- I email myself and then never read the articles. If that isn’t evident by my “inbox zero” example above I have a dozen other emails to articles and tutorials with subjects like “Reflect on this!” or “Make this!”
So what do I do now that I have this fresh new inbox? I’m going to start out on a journey to 52 weeks of inbox zero. That’s right, a whole year of inbox zero. I feel like 365 days of inbox zero is too difficult because vacations and other things happen. Each week having an empty inbox is totally manageable. I still have some unsubscribing and filtering and labeling to do to get my gmail totally 100% organized, but I feel solid about the progress I have made at this point.
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