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Andy Bliss is a percussionist, conductor, professor, and contemporary music collaborator living in Knoxville, TN.

 

He is also a tech enthusiast who is interested in tools and workflows that can reduce friction in creative output.

Auto-Filing Email with SaneBox

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I’ve enjoyed getting on board with SaneBox this year to help me stay in charge of my inbox. Since I began teaching in higher education, my email intake has increased significantly, while the processing team remains the same size – me. On top of this I have 2 other email accounts that manage, so it is important that my time in Apple Mail is as efficient as possible.

SaneBox comes with several folders that can be enabled for sorting through the wide variety of messages hitting the inbox, which I use to screen messages in Apple Mail a few times a day. The Inbox messages remain untouched by Sanebox  and are the messages I want to see and spend my time on. Often these might be about a potential collaboration from a colleague, a message from a former student, or an email from a friend. 

The rest of the messages get pulled into the following folders. By doing so, they are then trained to arrive in these folders in the future:

SaneLater: These are important messages that can’t be dealt with at the moment. Not having to re-read these multiple times, often over several days, makes processing the other actionable items easier and distraction-free.

SaneCC: SaneBox automatically files messages here that I am cc:ed on. Again, these are typically important, but rarely would be the first items I would act upon if I only have a few minutes. Having them out of the way until I have some extra time is extremely helpful.

SaneBulk: Real emails that don’t need to interrupt focused work. Newsletters, marketing from retailers, notifications from social media, and many other types of non-urgent and frequently uninmportant messages. I’ve found more than 50% of the emails I receive daily fall here. I often can scan them quickly, Select All, Mark as Read, and then Archive / Delete. This replaces the constant “pruning” many of us have resorted to on our phones while spending time with others, when we could be having focused, meaningful interactions.

SaneBlackHole: Junk mail. Real or spam. Drag emails here and they will be put directly in the Trash in the future. By not unsubscribing, I save time and don’t risk exposing myself to more junk by clicking through on the initial message.

Email can be rewarding when spending time on correspondence that is  important, but all too often we spend our time sorting through unimportant messages, trying to get to a place where we can focus on the important stuff. SaneBox has acted as my digital sorting assistant since I signed up and I’ve been cruising through my inbox at much faster speeds since, not to mention enjoying many of the other features SaneBox offers.

More information can be found at SaneBox.com. If you decide to give it a shot, consider using this link to save $5 off a paid subscription.

Andy Bliss