Places to Consider Having an Inbox by Meggin McIntosh, PhD

By meggin@meggin.com
In General
Aug 19th, 2013
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Paper inbox.If you do not have a designated “bin” to collect all of the incoming items in your life, then these items end up being spread, stuffed, and/or stacked anywhere and everywhere.  This leads to the omnipresent feeling that you have things to do, but you’re not exactly sure what or where they are.  By having collection “bins,” you have at least limited the possible locations. Consider buying attractive bins. The top of a box will do, but it’s much more satisfying seeing the bottom of a lovely oak inbox than the bottom of a cardboard box.  Ponder (and put into practice) the following suggestions for collection locations and their accompanying “bins”….

  1. Your office: a large box or basket, which is processed daily.

  2. Your home: a large box or basket, which is processed daily.

  3. Your car: a large box or basket which is carried into your home or office daily and dumped into the inbox there.

  4. Your home office: a large box or basket which is processed daily.

  5. Your email: one email inbox to collect all initial email (even when you have multiple email addresses).

  6. Your briefcase: a folder or large envelope that is emptied daily into your office or home inbox.

  7. Your suitcase: a folder or some type of zipping pouch which is emptied into your home or office inbox upon returning from out of town.

  8. Your planner: one location for recording all incoming ideas, voice mails, and requests that are not on another piece of paper. This “bin” is processed daily.

  9. Your smartphone: one file or list where you can record all incoming ideas, voice mails, and requests that are not recorded elsewhere (this is for people who use electronic instead of paper planners).

  10. Your gym bag: a designated pocket or pouch, which is carried into your home or office and dumped into the inbox and/or washing machine there.

The key idea here is this: have limited locations (bins) for collecting the incoming items and then process these items daily. Your life will change radically if you empty/process your inboxes every single day.

And if you liked these tips you may be interested in the Get a Plan! Guide® to Ridding Your Workspace of Clutter part of the Get a Plan! Guides® series designed to give you the ideas and inspiration to do your work easier, faster, and in a more focused fashion.

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