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Take Control of Your Email Inbox by Cleaning It

Abby Slutsky is an American who has concerns about our country and the way the media portrays news.

If you are anything like me, you probably have emails from years ago that are still not deleted from your mailbox. Unfortunately, they take up space and make it more difficult for you to find current emails that you need. If you work, your business email may be organized better than your personal one. It probably seems like you never have time to declutter emails from your personal inbox. Fortunately, with a little effort, you can get your personal email inbox under control too.

These quick steps will help you clean your email inbox in no time.

1. Delete emails you no longer need.

2. Unsubscribe to solicitors and junk mail.

3. Create folders and use them.

4. Set up spam filtering and safe email lists.

5. If it is too overwhelming, create a new email account.

1. Delete Emails You No Longer Need

Do not open an email, read it, and forget to delete it. The email is simply taking up space, and you are unlikely to reread it or need it again. Decluttering emails can seem like a daunting task, but if you use your time efficiently it can be accomplished.

Tidying up your email does not mean you have to spend hours at your computer. If you are organizing emails at home, set aside a certain amount of time to sort through your emails each day, or decide to declutter your inbox during commercils while you watch television.

Alternatively, most people can access their emails on their cell phones. While you are waiting in line or sitting outside, you can easily delete unwanted emails.The job will eventually get done.

Junk Mail Piles Up in Your Inbox Fast

Imagine all this junk mail and more sitting in your inbox waiting to be deleted.

Imagine all this junk mail and more sitting in your inbox waiting to be deleted.

2. Unsubscribe to Solicitors and Junk Mail

If you open an email you do not want, it will probably often be an offer or an email trying to sell you something. The Federal Trade Commission requires that these emails offer you a way to opt out or unsubscribe.

To unsubscribe to a company sending you unwanted emails, it is likely that you will need to scroll all the way to the bottom of the email. Somewhere towards the end will be an option to unsubscribe. Some retailers send messages daily, so unsubscribing can declutter email inboxes substantially. Some companies request that you provide a reason for unsubscribing, or they may give you an option to keep your subscription but receive fewer emails. Almost every company will ask if you are certain that you want to unsubscribe, firmly click unsubscribe.

Virtual Folders Work the Same Way as Physical Folders

Create folders to store your email in categories. When messages are organized, they are easy to locate.

Create folders to store your email in categories. When messages are organized, they are easy to locate.

3. Create Folders

Creating email folders allows you to put messages that you want in a specific place. If you make categories for emails you want to keep, you will know exactly where to find them when you need them.

To create a folder, scroll down to “my folders” on the left side of your emails. Press the plus sign, and you will receive a prompt that guides you to create a folder. For example, I have folders for all of the writing websites I use, online bills, tennis contacts, educational matters, and client files.

Once you have files, make sure you use them. As soon as you read an email, drag it to the appropriate folder or delete it. There is no reason to keep an email in your central inbox area where you receive new emails. Organizing emails in folders lets you control your inbox, so it stays clean . This is a time-saver when you need to see an old message fast.

4. Set Up Filters and Safe Lists

Email filters allow you to set up your email so that it will process your incoming messages based on certain criteria. You can arrange for emails from designated senders to automatically go to a spam file, if you desire.

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You can also set up a safe or white list to help minimize email spam and unwanted messages. This will limit the messages you receive to addresses in the list. Of course, any address in your contact list will be considered part of that list.

The technique for setting up and filters is slightly different depending on the email service you use. Here are some links to help you if you have Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, or other email inboxes.

5. Create a New Email if Necessary

If you decide to create a new address, limit the people who know about it. Use your old email for retailers and people who might share it. Do not put your new email on social media. Follow the steps above to clean your new email regularly so that you do not get overwhelmed with unwanted spam.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Abby Slutsky


Abby Slutsky (author) from America on October 19, 2020:

Thanks for reading. Yes, it is a lot to keep up with.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on October 19, 2020:

This is very good advice. I have many folders for my email that I want to save just in case I have forgotten a website or want to look back on a recipe or something like that. The rest I delete daily. It does seem like it is a never-ending job.



Abby Slutsky (author) from America on October 11, 2020:

Thanks for reading.

Amy on October 11, 2020:

This is very helpful Abby! Thanks for this great reminder to get organised inbox.

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on September 07, 2020:

Thanks for reading.

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on September 07, 2020:

Thank you for reading.

Charlene Gallant from Cape Town, South Africa on September 07, 2020:

Yes, I need to declutter to function effectively:) great article!

Danny from India on August 29, 2020:

Yes, the spam, draft & junk mail take a lot of space. It's better we do housecleaning of inbox every week so as to clear the clutter.

Thanks for sharing these useful tips

Abby Slutsky (author) from America on August 29, 2020:

They are very convenient. I started using them at home when I saw how convenient they were at work.

Ankita B on August 29, 2020:

I do almost everything you have suggested in this list. But I haven't ever thought of creating folders and arranging emails neatly. It is definitely a very helpful tip. Thank you for sharing this informative article.

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