A Dead Simple 3-Minute Tip for More Time: Bomb Your Inbox!

List of useless newsletters

Lost time is never found again.
Benjamin Franklin

It’s no coincidence that “email” has 75% of the same letters as “time.” Or maybe it is. Hell, I dunno.

Isn’t it about time you fight back?

The Unsubscribe Bomb

Drop a bomb on your inbox… clear that #!@$ out. Here’s how:

  1. Open up your email client (5 seconds)
  2. Search for “unsubscribe” (2 seconds)
  3. Open each email, Cmd+F for “unsubscribe” in each one, click the links (2 minutes)

Then, presto! Way less mail.

Rule #1: Do it now

Don’t fave the tweet that sent you here. Don’t click “Read Later.” Don’t go “Hmm, I’ll do that tomorrow” and close this page.

You know you won’t come back to it.

Do it now. It takes 3 minutes, max.

Rule #2: Be brutal

Resist the urge to be a digital hoarder.

If you really love the newsletter, keep it.

But don’t keep it around because you might miss out on a great deal! or because you read it… sometimes… when trapped by snowpocalypse in a remote woodland cabin, surrounded by zombies. Because, let’s face it, that only happens once a year. Twice, maybe.

Unless you devour the newsletter just about every time, you won’t miss it, and you’ll feel better when it’s out of your life.

When in doubt, unsubscribe.

If you really think you’ll miss that particular newsletter, set a little reminder about it on your calendar for a month later. If you still miss it then, you have my permission to re-subscribe.

A penny saved is a penny earned… until you blow it on Groupon.
Benjamin Franklin

Rule #3: Enjoy the blessed silence

Cuz I am. It’s glorious.

How do you carve out time for your projects?

Share your tips! Especially if they’re related to email!

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Discussion

  1. Andy Stewart

    These two email tips save me a lot of time:

    • Don’t open your email in the morning until you’ve achieved your most important task (or until you’re hungry, whichever is sooner). Then close it and have lunch! The lure of well-earned food will help you be brief with your email.

    • You can have another email session at the end of the afternoon, if necessary. Otherwise keep your email closed.

    Reply
    • Amy

      Those are good rules, Andy. But what if your business runs on email? With a remote team, we really need it. It, or something else equally distracting.

      I also have an additional rule “don’t read an email unless you can handle or respond to it right now.” I have a terrible habit of reading an email, thinking “this is too much for now” and leaving it for later. Result = strife.

      Reply
  2. Brook Riggio

    Nice.

    I filter all email containing “notification” or “unsubscribe” to it’s own folder so I can deal with it when there really is time (about twice a week).

    Gotta admit, though: I’ve gotten on to too many political action lists (about very important issues). I’ll take this as impetus to start clicking some of those unsubscribe links.

    Reply
    • Amy

      That’s a great idea, Brook! I only just today realized I could search for that. A rule is the next big thing.

      Reply
  3. Grigory V.

    Thanks for the post! I don’t subscribe to much newsletters – three I just love (JavaScript dev weekly, iOS dev weekly, 30×500) and some updates from app developers whose apps I’ve bought/services I use (just unsubscribed from many).

    But this helped a lot with changing my email address (Google for domain to iCloud). Searched for “settings” and “change”.

    Reply
  4. Steve Smith

    I’ve found otherinbox really great for this actually. I don’t use it on all my mail accounts but it does mean you still get the messages they just don’t really distract you. Only issue is it can take a few minutes after the messages arriving for them to get moved to the folder that otherinbox moves them to so you do still get the notifications etc.

    Reply
  5. CWebba1

    Oh this felt good. Some unsubscribe links asked for a reason why so I pasted the URL to this blog into let them know it’s nothing personal. Just me clearing clutter.

    Using the command+F is really the key. I like the filtering idea posted above too.

    Reply

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