Clear the Email Clutter

Don’t you just love starting a new year with a tangible project? How about getting your email inbox cleaned out!

Your challenge (should you choose to accept it)  is to spend about 20 minutes and clear out some email.

Here are a few good things to know about how to make the most of this challenge.

Delete vs Archive:


Imagine you have an unlimited storage container to put stuff in. It is out of your way, but you can always go back and fetch stuff out of it if you need to. This is archiving. Out of your way, but not totally gone.


Deleting is like taking it to the dump. You got rid of it, it’s gone and you can’t get it back.

Think Like a Triage Nurse

Only read enough of each email to determine if you need to keep it or delete it (or archive it).

If your email inbox is overwhelming to you, don’t waste time deciding if you want to unsubscribe or how you should file a particular email. Think quickly without remorse. You can save emails to a general purpose “save” folder and think about it later if you are not sure you want to delete or archive it.

Think Binary:

  1. Save folder
  2. Trash/Archive

Eliminate Similar Email in Bulk

Find an email that seems to show up a LOT (make sure it is one you no longer want) and select or open it. The rest of this trick is different for Gmail vs

Gmail users – Eliminate Email in Bulk

  1. Once you have the email selected, go to the top toolbar in Gmail and choose “more”.
  2. From the “more” menu choose “filter email like this”. Now Gmail will find all the email with that search parameter.(click the blue search button to make the big filter box go away)
  3. Now select all of them by clicking in the little square at the top of the list This will

    check all the little boxes next to the offending emails so you can delete them.

Note: To select ALL (50 or more) emails look for “select all emails” right above the top email listed.

You can download this Guide Sheet with instructions for Saving, Deleting and Moving email in Gmail.

Or check out this Video: Mass Move Emails with Gmail users – Eliminate email in bulk

  1. Once you have the email selected choose “sweep” from the top toolbar.
  2. This will give you several cool options, including the option to delete ALL the emails like the one you originally selected.

You can also download this Guide sheet with instructions for Saving, Deleting and Moving email in

Or check out this Video: Mass Move Emails with Outlook Online

If you use another email platform the Gmail and Outlook guide sheets may give you clues to help with your system. Most email systems work in a very similar way.

Now, let’s get to work!

  • Look at your email inbox and see you many you have in there.
  • Set a timer for 20min (You will most likely find a timer in the clock app of your phone)
  • Go to your inbox and get to it!
  • When you are done note how many emails you have left and be very proud of yourself.
  • And please share your success in the National BAM group and tag me – Nicole Lux-Ritchie so I can be excited with you.

Would you like a systematic guide to getting this done? (It includes some extra secrets)

 Check out the FREE Operation: Inbox Zero Initiation Course at

Nicole Lux-Ritchie – Founder of Luxcentric

Nicole’s mission is to help professionals gain the technical skills they need to grow their business and focus on their missions.

The focus of Luxcentric is on training practical strategies in the area of the core technologies.


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