Everyone has overlooked or neglected to reply to an email at one point or another. This is because our new and read..

Everyone has overlooked or neglected to reply to an email at one point or another. This is because our new and read emails are often mixed together. Often, our inboxes appear so cluttered that it takes you a couple of seconds to find a new email and start working on it. What we all want is a more simplified process, which allows us to have improved control over our emails. In fact, we want to be prompted to reply to emails, so that we never miss anything important, and most of all, we want to spend less time on our emails and more time with our family and friends.

If you receive more than 20 emails a day, you probably need a bit of help in sorting them out. Here are some rules to follow, which serve as a good starting point for saving precious time and effort when emails are concerned.

Don’t let the computer decide if a message is read or not

You should be able to decide this yourself. When you open an email, it will usually be flagged as “read” within just a few seconds. What if you haven’t read it, or if you need to attend to it later? Also, when you reply to or forward an email, it’s instantly flagged as read too. What if you want to forward the email to someone else? In short, this is quite possibly the worst setting you can have on your email client. It creates confusion as soon as you enable it. You can turn off this function with a TruePreview plugin in Mac’s Mail.

Create a Smart folder to show only new and unread messages

Over time, as your email grows, unread messages will go to the bottom of the page as they are pushed down by new emails. When you’ve started the practice of manually marking emails read or unread, the good news is, you can safely forget about messages that have been marked read. You don’t even have to see them anymore. Every time you fire up your email client, what should be presented to you are new and unread emails. Your work is to process all those emails and move on to other things.

Quicker keyboard shortcut in Mac’s Mail

Manually marking each message read and unread can seem like a hassle at first, but it makes things easier for you in the long run. To do it quickly, you’ll need to use a keyboard shortcut instead of using a mouse to mark your emails as read if you’ve decided no more action is required for that email. You can replace the default keyboard shortcut in Mac’s Mail by changing from Command+Shift+U to Control+A. It makes all the difference.

The best email tools

When it comes to checking your email, you have the choice of using an existing email client that has been installed into your computer, or Webmail. Choose one which can accommodate the points highlighted earlier. In Gmail, you can do it via flagging your email, but to this day, I’m not quite sure of how to use it. Outlook and Outlook Express are both complicated and have a poor interface design. The best email client, by far, is Mac’s Mail for various reasons. Firstly, it’s fast and reliable and the way it arranges your inbox make it easy to work on your emails. Other email clients, such as Thunderbird, Postbox, Eudora, Mulberry Mail and Zimbra are rather unreliable too.

Setting up email using IMAP instead of POP3

Working on multiple devices has proven to be a challenge for most email users today. You want to have the flexibility of accessing your mailbox through your mobile devices and computers, but at the same time keep track of which emails have been read or not. Users also want to send an email through, say, their laptop, and have it appear in their mobile’s sent box automatically. The trick? Set up your email using IMAP instead of POP3.