It seems to be only common sense that you'll want to read your e-mail once they've arrived. Now, you start by looking at your e-mail, and the e-mail portion of Outlook. So if you are not there already, you'll click on the Mail icon in the Navigation bar. Now what I do is I look for my Inboxes that display numbers to the right of them, because that tells me that they contain new unread mail. So I click on my Inbox. Again, I can determine if a message has not been read by that unopened envelope.
If I want to read it, I could simply click on a message, and I can read the contents of it, off to the side in my Preview panel. If I'd like to see it in greater detail, I can also double-click on the message and see it in greater detail. Some people don't like the Reading Pane. In Outlook, if you hover your mouse for a couple of moments on a message, and it's showing up in the Reading Pane, Outlook will mark that message as having been read, and sometimes my mouse just happens to be sitting on a message, even though I am not reading it.
So you might decide you want to turn off the Reading Pane. You notice that we have, up in the Layout portion of the View tab, we have some Reading Pane options. You could choose to turn it to the bottom of your screen, so that the Reading Pane is down there, or you can turn it off completely. Now, if you do want to have the Reading Pane on, you can make it bigger or smaller by putting your mouse between a list of messages in your Reading Pane and dragging it to the left, or dragging it to the right.
You also may find that the To-Do Bar takes up a little bit of room, and you might want to minimize that, or bring it back to full view again. Now, I personally like to turn off my Reading Pane, because it gives me more options for viewing my e-mail. By default, Outlook is going to arrange all your e-mail according to date. It's going to put the most recent ones on the top; for example, here's the messages that came in today and the oldest mail down on the bottom.
So here's messages that came in last month. Now, if I want, I can sort my e-mail in any order I want; for example, I might want to sort them by the person that they're from. I can do that very easily by clicking on From column. Now all the messages are grouped according to the person who has sent them. I can also use some of the buttons up here in this Arrangement area; for example, I might want to sort all my messages according to category, so with one click on the Categories button, I'll now see all my items grouped together in the Blue Category.
I can do the same thing for e-mails that I've flagged as Important. So I might want to click on this Flag button. Now, I'll see all those messages that have a flag date of today grouped together. Talk about going paperless. With Outlook, you can read your e- mail and not even have to worry about finding a letter opener.
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