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Getting to Inbox Zero


Monday Productivity Pointers

with Jess Stratton and Garrick Chow and Nick Brazzi

Video: Getting to Inbox Zero

My name is Jess Stratton and welcome to this week's edition of Monday Productivity Pointers. If you are an iPhone or iPad user and you have a Gmail account, Yahoo account, or an iCloud email account, you're eligible to use a free app called Mailbox to help you get closer to that illusive Inbox zero. It does exist. I promise. I've seen it. I've even gotten there thanks to this app. This will probably be the most favorite Monday productivity pointers I've ever done because I really love this app this much and it's helped me probably more than any other app I will ever use.
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  1. 24m 33s
    1. Sending and receiving money with Venmo NEW
      6m 23s
  2. 1m 11s
    1. Welcome back to Monday Productivity Pointers!
      1m 11s
  3. 26m 40s
    1. The Pomodoro technique
      6m 31s
    2. Using accessibility tools to enhance productivity on Mac and Windows
      7m 36s
    3. Designating a Facebook heir
      2m 48s
    4. Setting up an automatic login for Windows and Mac
      9m 45s
  4. 17m 32s
    1. Using an Amazon filler app to qualify for free shipping
      2m 11s
    2. Using the free version of GoToMeeting
      3m 35s
    3. Creating mind maps
      6m 23s
    4. Working with a touch app on a Windows 8 desktop PC
      5m 23s
  5. 10h 56m
    1. Running a group meeting with coworkers
      7m 19s
    2. Recording and marketing chat on air
      8m 30s
    3. Creating a quick presentation
      5m 37s
    4. Presenting from an iPad or computer
      3m 36s
    5. Migrating your accounts to
      9m 55s
    6. Setting budgets and goals
      7m 4s
    7. Collaborating on team documents
      5m 53s
    8. Creating an online photo gallery
      4m 58s
    9. Kickstarter: Setting up your project
      10m 41s
    10. Driving traffic to your project
      5m 48s
    11. Conducting a voice call with a virtual team
      6m 40s
    12. Adding video and chat notifications
      4m 7s
    13. Accepting a payment with Square
      4m 35s
    14. Using the Square Wallet
      2m 32s
    15. Setting up shop on Etsy
      6m 31s
    16. Tracking your Etsy sales with Shop Stats
      4m 9s
    17. Raising your Klout score
      7m 3s
    18. Earning Klout perks
      4m 55s
    19. Skydrive: Collaborating on team documents
      4m 56s
    20. Skydrive: Accessing files on the go
      2m 57s
    21. Setting up Google alerts to track your data
      5m 5s
    22. Removing a page from the Google search index
      4m 42s
    23. Browsing privately in public
      4m 38s
    24. Cleaning up your session before logging out
      5m 8s
    25. Troubleshooting a remote computer with TeamViewer
      3m 42s
    26. Taking screenshots from a PC
      4m 12s
    27. Taking screenshots from a Mac
      3m 36s
    28. Setting up Find My iPhone
      3m 36s
    29. Using iCloud to find an iPhone
      3m 49s
    30. Sampling color from the screen
      5m 27s
    31. Using for inspiration
      3m 22s
    32. Get an audio clip onto YouTube using iPhoto
      5m 49s
    33. Creating playlists and customizing your YouTube channel
      5m 41s
    34. Record your screen using QuickTime
      3m 14s
    35. Record your screen using CamStudio
      2m 34s
    36. Using Tempo Smart Calendar when you are going to be late
      3m 9s
    37. Using Twist to let your customers know where you are
      3m 38s
    38. Using Wunderlist to track multiple projects
      9m 0s
    39. Use the Wunderlist browser extension to create tasks on the web
      5m 46s
    40. Using Smart Mailboxes with Mac Mail
      6m 52s
    41. Customizing the Mac Mail View
      7m 13s
    42. What's a firewall?
      7m 36s
    43. What is the Cloud?
      4m 42s
    44. Creating your own recipe with IFTTT
      7m 19s
    45. Browsing existing recipes with IFTTT
      5m 7s
    46. Installing the Feedly browser extension
      6m 34s
    47. Customizing Feedly
      6m 53s
    48. Understanding the basics of Twitter
      9m 9s
    49. Using Tweetdeck to handle multiple accounts
      9m 14s
    50. Working with URL Shorteners
      5m 45s
    51. Using
      8m 31s
    52. Creating Quick Parts to re-use text
      6m 19s
    53. Moving your Autotext to a new computer
      6m 7s
    54. Shutting off access to social networks
      6m 18s
    55. Hiding taskbars
      2m 36s
    56. Exploring the iOS 7 Update
      10m 7s
    57. Running a productive online meeting
      3m 44s
    58. Getting meeting minutes faster
      6m 47s
    59. TextExpander for Mac
      7m 6s
    60. Breevy for Windows
      3m 44s
    61. Using Smart Folders on a Mac
      5m 52s
    62. Using Windows Libraries
      4m 25s
    63. Finding large attachments in your email apps
      5m 13s
    64. Use Ninite to install all your PC apps at once
      3m 30s
    65. Use Get Mac Apps to install your Mac apps at once
      2m 56s
    66. Creating a disposable email address with Guerrilla mail
      4m 7s
    67. Creating an email address that lasts only 10 minutes
      3m 16s
    68. Finding and adding local vendors to enhance your iOS reminders
      3m 45s
    69. Adding geofencing to Find My Friends
      3m 20s
    70. Turning a Word document contract into a PDF
      4m 1s
    71. Turning a PowerPoint presentation into a PDF
      4m 10s
    72. Resetting browser site passwords
      7m 11s
    73. Disabling toolbars, resizing screens, and accidentally closed tabs
      7m 42s
    74. Identifying your wifi's weakest link
      7m 59s
    75. Setting up dual band speed on your router
      7m 36s
    76. Add your social media activity to your website
      8m 54s
    77. Using WordPress mobile to update on the go
      4m 48s
    78. Matching the header row on your spreadsheet files
      8m 20s
    79. Using a formula to merge first and last name columns
      5m 58s
    80. Using JoliDrive to browse cloud app data
      5m 11s
    81. Using JoliDrive on an iPad
      4m 31s
    82. Finding deals on eBay using misspelled listings
      4m 18s
    83. Searching for promotional and coupon codes online
      5m 52s
    84. Sending real postcards from your computer with Postagram
      4m 25s
    85. Using Postagram to send a real postcard from your smartphone
      3m 55s
    86. Getting to Inbox Zero
      11m 4s
    87. Using existing GMail labels with Mailbox
      3m 19s
    88. Adding 2-step authentication
      3m 39s
    89. Enabling in-app PIN codes
      3m 31s
    90. Accessing your digital movies
      5m 20s
    91. Copying movies onto a device
      3m 25s
    92. Using Genius Scan to scan your documents
      3m 34s
    93. Sending your scans
      2m 41s
    94. Using Acrobat to ink sign a PDF
      4m 49s
    95. Writing a letter of recommendation
      7m 49s
    96. Constructing a successful press release
      4m 48s
    97. Troubleshooting wireless security
      4m 48s
    98. Writing a claim letter
      5m 22s
    99. The best reasons to try online chat customer service
      5m 9s
    100. How to do a firmware update
      6m 34s
    101. Siri, your iPhone assistant
      4m 48s
    102. Writing an email that gets read
      4m 51s
    103. Writing an email that requires action
      2m 54s
    104. Your Blu-ray questions answered
      3m 50s
    105. Using LittleBit to photograph your goal progress
      3m 9s
    106. Exporting WordPress blog entries
      3m 28s
    107. Understanding how Office 365 works
      5m 9s
    108. Using Waze for crowdsourced GPS
      2m 58s
    109. Downloading your Facebook timeline
      3m 10s
    110. Scheduling email with Boomerang
      4m 24s
    111. Google Labs for Calendar
      2m 58s
    112. Finding missing songs in iTunes on your iPhone
      2m 10s
    113. Requesting your Twitter archive
      2m 59s
    114. Using Doodle for easy group scheduling
      4m 59s
    115. Easily remote to another computer with
      3m 47s
    116. Keyboard shortcuts for YouTube
      2m 58s
    117. Easily annotate images with Skitch
      6m 4s
    118. Get your Google Calendar schedule by email every morning
      3m 3s
    119. Blurring photos for posting on social networks
      6m 41s
    120. Migrating to Google Apps
      9m 31s
    121. Using supplemental To Do apps
      3m 43s
    122. Getting alerts for Amazon price drops
      2m 36s
    123. Four tips to teach kids about websites
      8m 19s
    124. Caring for family members from afar
      4m 39s
    125. Using Google Sheets to make templates
      4m 35s

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Watch the Online Video Course Monday Productivity Pointers
12h 16m Appropriate for all Mar 25, 2013 Updated Aug 31, 2015

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this series on productivity, author Jess Stratton takes you through the latest tools that will help you run your business and life more efficiently. Each installment covers a particular feature or technique in a different online tool, such as Google Apps, Skype, YouTube,, Etsy, and more. Learn about topics ranging from recording and publishing video chats to managing your finances online.

Business Education + Elearning
Jess Stratton Garrick Chow Nick Brazzi

Getting to Inbox Zero

My name is Jess Stratton and welcome to this week's edition of Monday Productivity Pointers. If you are an iPhone or iPad user and you have a Gmail account, Yahoo account, or an iCloud email account, you're eligible to use a free app called Mailbox to help you get closer to that illusive Inbox zero. It does exist. I promise. I've seen it. I've even gotten there thanks to this app. This will probably be the most favorite Monday productivity pointers I've ever done because I really love this app this much and it's helped me probably more than any other app I will ever use.

What Mailbox allows you to do is quickly process email messages with a quick swipe, you can archive or delete messages. You can defer messages to disappear and then reappear at any particular time, and Mailbox gives you a fantastic range of options. This way, the email can be out of sight when you don't need to, or can't handle it, and can reappear when you're ready to do something with it. Mailbox calls this snoozing an email, like you do with an alarm clock. After using Mailbox for a few days, all of a sudden I got it.

Things clicked and I spent a quick half an hour processing all my mail and then it happened. I got the message from Mailbox that said, you're all done. It felt great. So, let me show you Mailbox in action today. You can see the app down on the dock. It's called Mailbox. And right now it has a 19 next to it. Now, that's not the number of email messages in there. That's the complete number of messages including threads. So they're really serious about trying to help you get down to Inbox zero. And sometimes if you just connect up with Gmail right away, you'll a very large number in there and it can be a discouraging but I'm going to show you how you can get through it really fast.

The neat thing about Mailbox, and I'm going to tap on it right to get into it, is that it works with multiple Google accounts. So, if you have a personal Gmail account and a Google Apps work account, you can see them both in there. So, here's what my Inbox looks like right now, and there's a few things I'm going to do. It works by swiping and swiping alone. So, up here, I've got this first Google calendar entry. The first thing that I want to show you is that a quick swipe to the right will archive the message and you can see it's being archived by the bright green bar in the check box.

Now, however, if I drag it a little slower, they call this a long slide, that green check turns to a red X and now I'm quickly deleting it. So, right away you can go through and quickly swipe and quickly long swipe and archive and delete. Here's my favorite thing that you can possibly do though. I'm going to come down here and tap this email. It's myself, but we'll just say for purposes that somebody else has asked me if I want to have coffee together tomorrow morning. Now, let's suppose I'm somewhere where I can't answer this right now, or I'm not sure if I'm available to have coffee, but I still want to get back to this person.

I'm going to defer this email. So, I'm going to do a quick swipe to the left this time. A quick swipe to the left brings up a whole range of snooze options and this to me makes Mailbox the most amazing mail program I've ever used. Just because of the great range of choices. So, I could snooze this particular email til later today because I know I'll be back in my office and will have a better idea of what my schedule's going to be. But you see I have all sorts of choices, like this evening or tomorrow, which will show up at 8 o'clock in the morning for me.

Also there's options like this weekend, so this is great if I'm have something in my email such as plane tickets or confirmation tickets for a play that I'm going to this weekend. I don't need to see it in my Inbox and it doesn't need to be there cluttering it up all week, when I'm not going to use it. But sure enough Saturday morning, the day of the big event, it'll pop right back in my Inbox for me to access it. It works the same way with the next week option. This is great if there's a work email that comes in and it has nothing to do with anything that's going on this week, but your main focus is going to be on it next week.

So, I can tap next week and sure enough Monday morning at eight o'clock in the morning, it'll pop right back in my Inbox. There's also other options like, in a month, someday, which is, I believe, two months down the road and you can change that. And I'll show you how to do that later or you can pick a date. So, for now, I'm going totap later today and it's gone. I can then go and do the same thing for any other ones. For example, here's a firmware update for my GoPro camera. I can't do this right now. I can't do it until I'm going to be home, working on my home computer.

So I'll do a quick swipe to the left and choose, This Evening. So, now I can go through and quickly file my emails. I know how to archive emails, delete them, defer them to a different time, and I can also move them to particular lists. For example, here's a confirmation number for a hotel room. I'm going to do a long swipe to the left. This brings up a list menu. For example, To Buy, To Read, or To Watch. These are the default ones that come with Mailbox, but I can create a new list.

I can call it confirmations. I'll tap done and it gets moved to my new list. Sometimes I like to create another one called Waiting For, which is great when you get confirmations and tracking numbers from UPS, or order confirmations. You can drag it into that Waiting For list and then get it out of your Inbox, but you won't forget that you're actually waiting for a package. Something else I can do is I can rearrange emails. For example, here's this $30 reward certificate. I don't want to forget that I have to process this. So, I'm going hold it down with my finger, and drag it all the way to the top because it takes priority.

Finally, the really cool thing that I can do with Mailbox is mass edit messages. If I scroll all the way to the bottom. I'm almost done and I want to archive everything. I don't want to delete it. I can use these two lines down in the bottom left and the bottom right and mass move messages all at once. For example, you see two horizontal lines on the bottom left hand side. There's a 14 in the middle cause that's how many emails messages I have left to go until I'm at Inbox zero. And there's two horizontal lines to the right of that.

Now whichever way I want to swipe, to the left or the right, I can grab those horizontal lines and tap and drag. If I tap the horizontal lines all the way to the right and drag it to the left, I can either move all of the messages to a list. I'm going to tap again to get back, or I can move all of the messages and defer them to a particular time. I'm going to tap again and this time, I'll drag the one on the left. I can do a quick swipe to archive them or a long swipe to delete them all.

In this case, I'm going to do a long swipe to delete them all. And it's telling me, do you really want to do this? So you can hit cancel and do a quick swipe. Now it's going to ask me if I really want to send all these conversations to the archive. Smart enough to know that you're going to be processing a lot of messages, so are you really sure? In this case I am, so I'll tap Archive, and all of a sudden, I've done it. I am at Inbox zero. The best part is, when I go back to my Gmail account online.

It's all filed like it is on my phone or tablet, and all the messages will pop back into the Inbox on the computer, like they should online also. Nowadays, I don't even file my messages that much online, I actually come here first on my iPad or iPhone and then go into the web version and start working. Mailbox isn't available for the desktop right now. It's just for the iPhone or iPad. Also Mailbox works best, when you take the time initially to clean up your Inbox, like we've just done. Now it may take you some time if you have thousands of messages, but trust me, it'll be worth it.

The whole point is that any email that you've deferred, will pop back into your Inbox when you need it to. So even if you're a visual person, and you need to see that email, you don't need to see it if you can't actually do anything with it at a moment. I'm going to show you one more thing. I'm going to tap the three horizontal lines at the top left hand side of the screen and here's where I can navigate through Mailbox. For example, if I want to find what I moved into those later snoozes, I can simply tap later. That way I can see them immediately if I need to.

I can also get into any emails that I've moved into particular lists. I can see what emails I've archived, put in the trash, and what emails I've sent. Finally, I can get into my settings from here and this is what I wanted to show you. This is how you add accounts. You can change your signature, but the really neat thing is, is that you can change your preferences for your snooze times and your lists. For example, if I tap Snoozes, here's where I can tell Mailbox what time I start my day.

So, when I say I want to snooze an email til tomorrow morning, that was the one with the coffee cup icon, it doesn't have to be 8:00 in the morning. You could change it to 6:00 or some other time that you want it. You can also customize every one, such as when you start your weekend, when you end it. What day your week starts on. What time the later today is going to be and even the Someday. For example,you can see that it defaults to two months. I'm going to tap done, and I'm going close out of Mailbox for now. To get the full Mailbox experience, think about swapping out the built-in mail app which is over here on the top left of my iPad for the Mailbox one.

So, you can just take that mail app and drag it out of the system tray and drag the Mailbox app in, like I've done. Also, so that you don't get twice the notifications, disable the regular mail app in the notifications area. If I tap Settings, and then Notification Center, scroll down and find the Mail app. Now this is the built-in one that comes with the iPad. I can see all my mail accounts, and if I tap iCloud, right now the alert style is set to Banners. I'm going to set that to None and I also don't want to see a badge icon.

I don't want to see it in the notification center or on the lock screen. Then I'm going to tap Mail again. I'll come back to the Notification Center and scroll down until you find your Mailbox app. Find the Mailbox app and then make sure the alert style is on. For example, you could set it to Banners. You could have the badge app icon visible. Make sure it's shown in the notifications center and on the lock screen. This way, you've swapped the two apps. Now, you're iPad and iPhone experience will be that of the Mailbox app instead of the mail.

You won't get twice the notifications and you'll still be able to use it just like the mail app. So go through, try Mailbox, get to Inbox zero and see how great it can really feel.

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