Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters

Who is guarding your email?

Have you ever been hard at work, noticed that someone sent you a message on Facebook and headed over to check it out?  If you’re like me, you might reply, surf around a bit and next thing you know it’s lunchtime.  And there’s a little voice in your head saying, “crap. I just wasted an hour!”.

With your phone, it’s easier to turn off your ringer than hear phone calls, see who they’re from and ignore them.  Good email filters are like turning off your phone.  They can be strong for you when you would be weak.  Email filters are bodyguards for your attention.

Important, urgent or actionable email should land in your inbox.  For everything else there are just 2 possibilities:

Put ’em somewhere else (archive, put it in folders, whatever works for you.)

  • Receipts: Amazon, Paypal, Netflix, etc.  Filter by subject or from address
  • Social Media notifications.  Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, etc.  “Bob is following you” or “Bob replied to your message”…
  • Email discussion lists that aren’t a Top-Priority.  Check ’em out later.
  • Vacation auto-responders from other folks.  Filter: (”we will reply” OR “has been received” OR “your inquiry” OR “will contact you” OR “will reply to you” OR “auto response” OR “for your interest” OR “for your message” OR “your enquiry” OR “out of office”)

Delete ’em

  • If you have friends who forward you “funnies” (that you don’t want) but also real email (you do want), create a filter for email FROM them that ALSO includes another recipient on their list.
  • Mail from old accounts, services or organizations (eg. schools, old jobs, professional orgs) you don’t want to hear from. Some services offer a one-click unsubscribe, but others force you to log in, or contact them. In that case just add a filter and move on.  Examples: (sales@dnforum.com OR marketplace-messages@amazon.com OR news@email.aircanada.com OR specials@ OR @futureshop.com OR DeltaAirLines@delta.com OR noreply@vbulletin.com)
  • Emails in other languages.  I don’t know anyone who would email me in Japanese, for example.  Filter: (秘 OR 密 OR 基 OR 地 OR を OR 作)

Other tips & tricks:

  • If you want to see email from your contacts before looking at new mail, some email clients will let you filter based on whether or not the sender is in your address book.  Tip from Leo Notenboom, Taming Email
  • If you’re worried you’ll miss an important message when you’re working or away from email, check out Jared Goralnick’s service AwayFind.
  • Gmail users can create unlimited addresses with this format, for easier filtering and tracking how companies use your address:  you+othertext@gmail.com

Any favorite email tips or tricks to add?


76 Responses to “Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters”

  1. Jonathan Argue Says:

    Myself, as a gmail user, I make heavy use of the label feature. I’ve created a few filters that auto-label emails as they come in – e.g. a voice mail message from a VOIP account.
    As I organize a number of events, I find labels very useful for categorizing streams of information as it comes in… then if you want to concentrate on a particular stream, you just search on the appropriate label.

    Another method I use for getting rid of spam is a challenge-response system. Basically, if an email gets sent to my domain and it is not on my whitelist (maintained on the server that hosts my domain), the sender gets an automated response asking them to simply reply in order for their message to be send to me. This gets rid of about 95% of those ‘I HAVE ONE MILLION DOLLARS WAITING FOR YOU IN AN ACCOUNT’ and those ‘ LARGER MALE APPENDAGE’ emails… as Spam bots seem to ignore messages coming back to them. Where it fails is when people use a reply to address that is your own (you’d typically want to whitelist you own email).

  2. technotheory Says:

    This is AWESOME, Aaron. I completely agree with using filters RUTHLESSLY. What I like best about this is you gave concrete suggestions for search terms to filter.

    I hate linking to my own articles (especially since you already linked to me with AwayFind!), but I figured you’d want some video tutorials with how to actually create the filters. So that’s here: http://sn.im/filtermail

    Glad to see you’re writing more again here, Aaron! Looking forward to more ice cream : )

  3. evgenya Says:

    Hey Aaron,

    This is helpful and something I’ve always felt I should do more of, but procrastinate doing as it is a bit of a boring task. Perhaps you could include links to “how to create filters” in popular email readers like “Mail” or “Outlook” or even “Pine”, though the last one is probably not that popular anymore, for those who haven’t done this before. It might help jump start some people.

  4. evgenya Says:

    DOH, just read Technotheory’s comment and clicked through to his link. just what I was asking about. Thanks.

  5. Another keyword Says:

    Great blog, keeping me from working

  6. Jarrod Bernstrom Says:

    I’ve got years of experience with writing anything from articles to reviews but this is really something…

  7. Tonisha Namihira Says:

    GREAT POST! Please add your site to our directory at http://www.everygreenthing.net and share your thoughts with our readers too.

  8. Jeffry Miser Says:

    Interesting post, thanks for posting. It was good to read on this boring day!

  9. darmowe sample Says:

    darmowe sample…

    […]Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters « Ice Cream For Everyone![…]…

  10. Eulalia Says:

    Quality posts is the important to be a focus for
    the users to pay a quick visit the website, that’s what this site is providing.

  11. Chet Says:

    I used to be recommended this website through my cousin.
    I’m no longer positive whether this publish is written by means of him as no one else know such targeted approximately my difficulty. You’re wonderful!
    Thank you!

  12. Derby Hotels Promo Code Says:

    My brother suggested I might like this website.
    He was entirely right. This post actually made my day. You cann’t imagine simply how much time I had spent for this info! Thanks!

  13. carb back loading amazon Says:

    When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added
    I get four emails with the same comment. Is there any
    way you can remove people from that service? Bless you!

  14. www.slideshare.net Says:

    A person necessarily lend a hand to make significantly posts I’d state. This is the very first time I frequented your website page and to this point? I amazed with the research you made to make this particular put up extraordinary. Wonderful process!

  15. American Personalized Products Coupon Code Says:

    I am really enjoying the theme/design of your website.
    Do you ever run into any browser compatibility problems?
    A small number of my blog visitors have complained about
    my website not working correctly in Explorer but looks
    great in Opera. Do you have any advice to help fix this issue?

  16. samanthawillscouponcode.wordpress.com Says:

    Hi there to every single one, it’s genuinely a nice for me to go to see this website, it contains useful Information.

  17. sites.google.com Says:

    whoah this blog is fantastic i really like reading
    your articles. Keep up the great work! You recognize, many persons are hunting round for this information, you could aid them greatly.

  18. Oliver Says:

    Fantastic website you have here but I was wanting
    to know if you knew of any forums that cover the same topics talked about in this article?
    I’d really like to be a part of online community where I can get feedback from other knowledgeable individuals that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Appreciate it!

  19. karissa shannon Says:

    always i used to read smaller posts which as well clear their motive,
    and that is also happening with this article which I am reading at this place.

  20. online form generator Says:

    However, there are several online interfaces available where
    one needs to click on different types of options to send HTML
    code in email or to generate HTML code. Rather, they’re designed to help spark possibilities in your own mind. The specific combination of reps, sets, exercises, and weight depends upon the desires of the body builder.

  21. 7 Day Belly Blast Diet Free Download Says:

    So not only will running help you fit, but it’ll help shift those love handles quickly.
    The only long term solution to toning up is through adopting a
    healthy eating and exercise program. Proteins are important parts of
    various hormones, enzymes and help in energy production
    as well.

  22. Linnea Says:

    At this time I am going to do my breakfast, when
    having my breakfast coming yet again to read other news.

  23. m3 system download Says:

    There is always two ends to an issue – a GIVE party and a TAKE party.
    Don’t let him know how desperate you are to get him back.
    FAA certification standards as well make ongoing training necessary; every twenty-four months, technicians
    are needed to have at least 16 hours of training at aviation maintenance technician schools
    to maintain certification.

  24. Renegade Diet Free Download Says:

    They are amazed when we go to a restaurant and they see me eating
    steaks, potatoes, pizza, cheesecake and all types of other “fattening” foods.
    Choose health sites that have been reliable information resource for patients, doctors, researchers and pharmaceutical companies.
    A disadvantage of the rapid version is that breakfast is not substantial.

  25. 4 cycle fat loss solution free pdf Says:

    On top of this, unsaturated fats provide a slow release of
    energy, so unlike high sugar foods and refined carbohydrates, will keep you satiated for longer.
    I thought this would turn me into a super-lean machine.
    Protein is needed daily for lean muscles and they need to be taken daily in small amounts.

  26. fat loss factor pdf Says:

    Rule #4 – Do Stabilizing Movements from the Pushup Position.
    Women should take half a serving, and men should take
    one serving, mixed in the recommended amounts of water. Using a appetite suppressant will help to prevent hunger, which could result in you eating more cheat meals than you should.

  27. penis enlargement bible free download Says:

    However it is important to realize that the Fat Loss Factor is not a panacea that will magically remove any fat and If you are looking for a “lose 10 pounds in 10 days magical programs”, then The Fat Loss Factor is probably not for you.
    I thought this would turn me into a super-lean machine.
    But let me explain the whole concept of this diet program.

  28. text the romance back free Says:

    Very good blog! Do you have any suggestions for aspiring writers?
    I’m planning to start my own blog soon but I’m a little lost on everything.

    Would you recommend starting with a free platform like WordPress or go for a paid option?
    There are so many choices out there that I’m totally confused ..
    Any ideas? Cheers!

  29. Leander Martial Arts Says:

    Gοod day! This is my first comment heгe so I just wаnted to give a quick shout out anԁ tell
    you I genuinely enjoy reading through уour poѕts.
    Can you recommend any othеr blogs/websites/forums that deal with the ѕame topics?
    Thanks for your time!

  30. Terry Says:

    You actually constructed many superb items with your post, “Whos guarding your inbox?
    Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream
    For Everyone!”. I will become coming back to ur site soon enough.
    With thanks -Dominique

  31. somanabolic Muscle Maximizer Says:

    Woulԁ you miոd if I quote a several of your articles oг
    blog posts as lonց as I provide credit and sоurces back to your weЬpage: http://icecreamforeveryone.com/2009/03/26/whos-guarding-your-inbox-getting-more-done-with-email-filters/. I am going tօ
    aslo make cеrtain to give you tҺe prоper anchor text link uѕing your blog title:
    Whoѕ ǥuarding your inbox? Getting more done with
    email filters . Please let me know if thiѕ is acceptable with you.
    Thank ʏou

  32. singles dating website Says:

    Hiya! I just discoѵered your site: Whoѕ guarding үour inbox?
    Gettinǥ more done with email filters when I was browsing reddit.com.

    It looks as thougҺ someone loved your website
    ѕo much they decidеd to bοokmark it. I’ll definitely be
    coming here more often.

  33. Texas Invitational 2014 Says:

    Hoաdy! It looks as though we both have a passion for the same thing.

    Your blog, “Whos guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters ” and mine are vеry similar.
    Hɑve you ever thought about writing a guest post for a similar Ƅlog?
    ӏt will unquestionably helр gain exposure to your website
    (my site recieveѕ a lot of traffic). If you are interesteɗ, e-mail
    me at: orlandobanfield@freenet.de. Many thanks

  34. Campus Gifts Discount Code Says:

    Good day very cool blog!! Guy .. Beautiful .. Wonderful ..
    I will bookmark your site and take the feeds additionally?

    I’m satisfied to seek out so many helpful info here within the publish, we need develop extra
    techniques on this regard, thanks for sharing. .
    . . . .

  35. pawn shops near me Says:

    Hi to all, how is the whole thing, I think every one
    is getting more from this web page, and your
    views are good in support of new users.

  36. film de cette marie-couche-toi-là inexpérimentée Says:

    Je suis venue sur ton post par chance et puis je ne le
    regrette pas du tout !!!

  37. Abbie Says:

    Com performs provide a BPI conforming audit.
    It took Huibers and his home improvement contractor
    keep these important things that you can rest his weary bones-literally-might not come to know that you hire plans
    on the building. The contractor looks at him differently than you may experience.
    It does allow various MAS contractors joining forces together.
    However, it’s a higher invoice after the welfare of the most dependable renovation contractors.

  38. http://makehimdesireyoufreepdf.blogspot.com Says:

    It is also important for you to get a man who will be prepared to walk down the
    aisle with you. Or buy him his favorite chocolate ice cream
    out of the blue. Conversations with him about personal matters are frustrating,
    as you find that getting his opinion or feelings on matters is
    like pulling teeth.

  39. Google Says:

    Adsense is actually a really great program for those who maintain blogs, as blogs get updated all the time and the
    Adsense possibilities are almost limitless.
    These pre-computed numbers, hold on in a very giant information bank for millions or URLs
    on the net. But it seems Memorial Day wasn’t important enough to Google.

  40. aquaripure nitrate filter Says:

    Greetings I am so excited I found your blog page, I really found you by
    mistake, while I was searching on Digg for something else,
    Anyways I am here now and would just like to say cheers for a
    marvelous post and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the
    theme/design), I don’t have time to go through it all
    at the moment but I have saved it and also added in your RSS
    feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read much more, Please do keep up
    the superb work.

  41. room addition plans software Says:

    Hi colleagues, good article and pleasant arguments
    commented at this place, I am truly enjoying by these.

  42. search engine optimizer Says:

    Ecommerce is also possible to obtain tremendous satisfaction from
    a trusted supplier; utilising them when you rebuild
    them now? Sure you can have the talent and creative web design facility is search engine optimization provided to the website.

    A lot of content since its creation, the effective capitalization from any of them as their rates would differ considerably.
    The main purpose of the process more efficient communication between search engine optimization the client this site.

    The appearance of jagged edges with each and every firm needs a prudish

  43. search marketing Says:

    However, for the visitors search engine optimization stay for a reputed internet consultant
    as he shares his own store. The Web design training course is to
    assist me in doing so. Then, nothing will stop you from having Search engine results.
    Who is your target market.

  44. seo india Says:

    Based on this knowledge, your web design and development online education. Web design companies, try to get your online business will continue to increase
    the usability of your market to lessen search engine
    optimization price. Here are some of the top 8 secrets which you think.
    The black text on a new item is out of such users. However, be better spent search engine optimization elsewhere and results.

    Make sure that you have to be filled with media queries and tickle their fancies.

  45. search engine optimization with google Says:

    I believe what you wrote was very reasonable. But, consider this, what
    iif you added a little information? I ain’t suggesting your content isn’t
    good, but what if you added something to possibly get people’s
    attention? I mean Whos guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream Foor Everyone!

    is kinda vanilla. You could peek at Yahoo’s home page and
    watch how they create post headlines too get viewers to
    open the links. You might add a related video or a pic or two too get readers
    interested about what you’ve got to say. Just my opinion, it would bring your posts a little livelier.

  46. Red Bank vinyl privacy fence cost Says:

    Cap and trip fence style has the clean look of
    a uniform top edge between each post with the added cost of the top rail.

  47. dui attorneys Says:

    dui attorneys

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  48. additional info Says:

    additional info

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  49. dj set up Says:

    dj set up

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  50. international school in myanmar Says:

    international school in myanmar

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  51. atb financial mortgage rates Says:

    atb financial mortgage rates

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  52. real estate marketing strategies Says:

    real estate marketing strategies

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  53. Venetta Says:

    You can speed up your metabolism and lose belly fat fast by snacking wisely.
    When you drink lots of alcohol, you’ll have more issues with fat round the
    middle area. Progressive Overload is the key workout principle you need to incorporate in order to get the results that you’re looking for with regards to strength training and the best
    way to build muscle.

  54. ford dealers still Says:

    ford dealers still

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  55. Margo Winslow Says:

    “I figured out how to write this tricky bit of code; I’m smart” Ardoin

  56. Visit Website Says:

    Existen en el desarrollo de Android disponibles actualmente en el mercado puede hacer fácilmente los pagos de bienes y productos, sus aficiones,
    sus necesidades en click here definitiva, para seguir conservando el interés del
    navegador. Los artículos son una excelente Internettécnica de
    marketing cristiano, y veo a pequeños seres amorfos trabajando
    sobre una línea de Yellow Pages. Esta herramienta representa el diferenciador frente
    a la experiencia del éxito. Marta Romo te propone click here que te entrevistes con tu lenguaje técnico humanizado para entender apenas.

  57. invisalign attachments Says:

    invisalign attachments

    blog topic

  58. digital marketing kansas city Says:

    If you are going to stay on top of the search results
    you have to keep up with your SEO. With the increasing number
    of online business these days, one can find a lot of SEO
    Services available online. Do your “homework” and settle on a
    company that can demonstrate good results, and is not hesitant to address your questions and concerns with
    direct responses.

  59. blockbuster golf cart parts Says:

    blockbuster golf cart parts

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  60. Uncovering Programs Of search engine optimization | hqxzella3007986 Says:

    […] It usually follows that the more links you build, the more traffic you can generate towards the direction of your page, and there are a variety of areas that you may pursue, such as:. Don’t think about it twice, this is the type of stuff no one else teaches on the internet and it won’t last long. Make sure that your site is optimized for all and not just Google. The actual cost of your SEO campaign will depend on the website and your campaign objectives. Don’t bog down at all as this would take you out the competition of Google SEO at once. search engine optimization […]

  61. her explanation Says:

    her explanation

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  62. workout supplement Says:

    wonderful issues altogether, you simply received a new reader.
    What might you suggest in regards to your put
    up that you made a few days ago? Any certain?

  63. dermefface vs revitol Says:

    I nonetheless have unhealthy zits although, and it is pricey to do that when I
    maintain getting new scars.

  64. find out here Says:

    find out here

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  65. denver seo Says:

    denver seo

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  66. grid condos Says:

    If you want to take a good deal from this paragraph then you have to apply such strategies to your won webpage.

  67. hvac online certification Says:

    THEGAMERSPK.NET EMAIL: usasamkhan@gmail.com,Description:
    TheGamesPk.Net Gaming Reviews,PC Games Download,Mobile Games,Android Games,
    Hardware Reviews,And Many More Download Content.

    ,KeyWords List :,gaming,games,online games,
    mobiles games,free pc games,gta v,gigabyte gt 730,education,online education,online education made
    life easy,Online Colleges,Best Online Colleges,online Degrees,Online
    Universities,Cheap Domain,Cheap hosting,Cheap Domain Name,gaming reviews,games review,reviews,gameplay,nvidia,intel,gigabyte,msi,games
    download,free pc games download,online pc games,credit cards,debit cards,best credit card and debit card,online debit card,dell,dell gaming laptop,dell gaming pc,best gaming laptop,best
    gaming pc,gaming pc,build gaming pc,cheap gaming pc,battlefield 4,battlefield 3,gta v
    download,grand theft auto 5,cheat codes,hardware,gaming hardware,ps3 games,ps4,ps4 games,xbox,xbox 360,xbox one,xbox one
    games,best games 2015,best pc games 2015,online certification,hvac online degree,hvac online certification,ashworth college,pennfoster college,university of
    phoenix,university,kaplan university,ashford university,
    capella university,osha,osha certified,android app,free andoid games download

  68. pulau pari Says:

    Fine way of describing, and nice article to get facts regarding my presentation subject matter, which
    i am going to present in university.

  69. sex tamil amma magan sex stories Says:

    Very great post. I simply stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that
    I’ve truly enjoyed browsing your weblog posts.
    After all I will be subscribing for your feed and I am hoping you write
    again soon!

  70. Percy Bertles Says:

    Wonderful blog! Do you have any helpful hints for aspiring writers?
    I’m planning to start my own site soon but I’m a little lost on everything.
    Would you advise starting with a free platform like WordPress
    or go for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that I’m completely confused ..

    Any ideas? Thanks a lot!

  71. 住宅 Says:


  72. 車 見積もり Says:



  73. مبل کلاسیک Says:

    گروه تولیدی مبل چارچوب با داشتن سالها تجربه در
    زمینه تولید انواع مبل راحتی , مبل استیل , مبل نیوکلاسیک

    و انواع ناهارخوری , سرویس خواب , کنسول ,
    ویترین و میز تلویزیون در صنعت مبلمان کشور فعال می باشد.

    ما با هدف عرضه مستقیم و بدون واسطه محصولات خود اقدام به تاسیس فروشگاه اینترنتی
    کرده ایم.

    تمامی محصولات دارای رنگبندی متنوع و
    به قیمت تولیدی و با گارانتی معتبر عرضه میگردد.

  74. バニラ 原料 Says:



  75. Ian Leaf Tax Says:

    Ian Leaf Tax

    Who’s guarding your inbox? Getting more done with email filters | Ice Cream For Everyone!

  76. escort dudley Says:

    Thank you for any other great article. The place else
    could anyone get that kind of information in such
    a perfect method of writing? I have a presentatijon subsequent week, and I am at the look
    ffor such info.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: