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8 spring cleaning tips for your email inbox

Email can be overwhelming and a productivity killer, but with these eight spring cleaning tips, you’ll develop new habits and keep your inbox squeaky clean.

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Spring cleaning your email inbox

Every spring, most people get the urge to purge, the need to be freed from hibernation and hoarding mode of winter, but many people miss their email inbox as a source of clutter. But let’s face it – most people could use some sprucing up of their overloaded email inbox.

Dmitri Leonov, VP of Growth at SaneBox says there are eight key ways you can clean up your email inbox right now, and what habits you should develop to keep that inbox clean.

1. Prioritization

Don’t let email be your #1 priority: Email is a to-do list other people can write on. Be proactive and focus on your own to-do list. Scan your Inbox for urgent/important items in the morning, then work on your top priorities. Dedicate blocks of time to processing email, and treat it as one of your priorities – not the default Priority #1.

If you’re ever sucked into “doing email”, ask yourself “Is clearing my Inbox really the best use of my time right now?” Eventually it will be – but make a conscious decision about it.

2. Urgent vs. Non-Urgent

Not all emails are created equal: Some emails need to be dealt with right away (urgent/important). Some can wait (non-urgent/important). And others should be archived/deleted in bulk (unimportant).

According to our data, the unimportant bucket is 58% of emails on average. Don’t let yourself get distracted by unimportant email.

3. Deal with bacn

Bulk-process your bacn: Spam has largely been solved, but the new evil is bacn (pronounced “bacon”). It’s legitimate mail: newsletters, updates from sites, social media alerts, mailing lists etc. But it doesn’t deserve to interrupt your day.

Some prefer to unsubscribe from all of that, but at the very least you need to process these unimportant messages in bulk. This is where SaneBox comes in – it groups these messages into a separate folder and summarizes them in a digest.

4. Two kinds of people

To file or not to file…That’s the wrong question! There are 2 kinds of people in this world: filers and non-filers. Know thyself and adjust accordingly. If you don’t mind searching in one massive archive, it’s ok – particularly if you’re a Gmail Search Pro. And if you prefer to have stuff neatly organized into sub-folders, that’s fine too. But don’t go overboard in either case. Find the happy medium.

5. Archiving

Don’t use your Inbox as an archive: Listen very carefully, because this is important. Using your Inbox as an archive goes against every productivity method out there. It’s the equivalent of keeping all your snail mail in your mailbox. It’s terrible for your productivity, and for your Subconscious. Don’t do it. Archive it all now – right now – and start fresh.

6. Delegate

Delegate: Just because an email lands in your inbox, doesn’t mean you need to be the one who takes care of it. If there’s someone who’s just as capable or perhaps more familiar with the subject – by all means, forward it on. One helpful hack is to use Sanebox’s RemindMe feature or Boomerang to remind you if the person you delegated to doesn’t get back to you by a certain time.

7. Defer

Defer: If an email is not urgent, or not actionable until later, most people tend to leave it in the Inbox. The problem is this causes you to look at it (i.e. spend time and focus thinking about it) every time you look in your Inbox. A much better way is to move it out of your Inbox. SaneBox offers yet another tool for this – Defer Folders. Move an email into one of them, and the email will pop back in your Inbox tomorrow morning, on Monday or any other predetermined time. This way you don’t have to worry about it until it becomes actionable. This is also what the new iPhone Mailbox app is all about.

8. Response times

Respond: If an email is really urgent, or if a response will take under 2 minutes, just reply now. Don’t waste time thinking of what to do with it.

The American Genius (AG) is news, insights, tools, and inspiration for business owners and professionals. AG condenses information on technology, business, social media, startups, economics and more, so you don’t have to.

Tech News

Jenzy helps perfectly measure your kids’ feet

(TECH NEWS) Jenzy is a mobile app currently in beta that helps you perfectly measure your kids feet and buy shoes without having to leave your home.

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Parents rejoice, there’s now a mobile app that sizes your child’s feet to determine their correct shoe size. No more carpet charts that every kid has put their dirty little socked foot on, or those weird metal sizing instruments.

With Jenzy, you just take a picture of your child’s foot, and the app calculates the measurements. It then generates personalized size and style recommendations, which you can order directly from the app.

Jenzy partners with podiatrist recommended brands designed for active kids, including pediped, Robeez, and Morgan & Milo. However, you don’t have to purchase their suggestions to receive the sizing info.

Incorrectly sized shoes are a literal pain for everyone, but this especially affects children, who don’t have purchasing power.

Additionally, shoes that don’t fit can have long-term effects on children’s growth and development, and lead to foot problems in the future. Properly fitted shoes are necessary for healthy foot development.

Wearing incorrectly sized shoes is just part of the problem. If shoes aren’t suited for every day use, children’s feet and overall growth can also suffer.

Flip flops, ballet pumps, and shoes with raised heels are not recommended by podiatrists for frequent use, as they can cause discomfort, or even musculoskeletal issues.

According to Dr. Stewart Morrison, a University of Brighton podiatrist, “children’s feet are still growing and are more susceptible to damage than adult feet, so it’s really vital to ensure they are wearing shoes which fit them well – in width as well as length – and that are suitable for age, as well as the task they are wearing them for.”

As online shopping has taken over, fewer parents are getting their children’s feet sized by in-store experts. Of course, there’s also a cost-barrier, as many stores that offer shoe-sizing are often more expensive.

Jenzy hopes to bridge that gap, providing parents both proper shoe sizes and affordable products designed to last.

Right now the app is set to launch in December, but if you don’t want to wait, apply to take part in the beta test on Jenzy’s site.

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Tech News

Time is money and Clockify helps you make the most

(TECH NEWS) Tracking your time worked as a freelancer can easily be lost in the shuffle. A new tool has been designed to make this important aspect easier.

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After years of searching for a method that works for me in terms of organization and productivity, the answer seemed to be simple: a calendar I can write on and Post-It notes. This method is a little old school, but seems to get the job done for my organizational needs.

However, there are some things that slip through the cracks with this method, but it’s more user error than it is the actual practice. One thing I struggle with is keeping track of my freelance hours this way.

I have a tendency to guesstimate how much time I worked throughout the day and know that I wind up underdocumenting my hours. I would hate to know how much money I’ve missed out on keeping (sometimes inaccurate) handwritten notes.

But, like many other small scale issues, there is a simple solution. And that is found in the form of time trackers.

One of the newest members to join the online time tracker team is Clockify, who operates under the idea of “your time, your rules.” It is a free time tracking tool designed for agencies and freelancers.

Clockify allows users to manage as many team members, projects, and workspaces that you need in an effort to help your business run smoothly. This allows for a complete overview of team productivity.

The tool offers a way to enter time manually as well as clock time automatically. This way you can keep tabs on what you’re working on and assign and label time logs to the appropriate clients.

With this time tracking, you are able to generate weekly, monthly, and annual reports at any given time. These reports can be saved, exported, and shared with clients to give them more information about your work process.

The real-time tracking helps to improve business efficiency and gives more insight into what each team member is spending their time on. Having this information available can give visual representation of how to improve in the future.

Clockify currently exists in desktop format with iOS and Android apps coming soon.

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Tech News

Russia vetoed cryptocurrency and came back with CryptoRuble

(TECH NEWS) Russia put a hard pass on other cryptocurrencies in their country so that they could hop in the crypto-game with their own CryptoRuble.

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Just days after The American Genius reported that the Russian Central Bank would attempt to block access to cryptocurrency trading cites, the Coin Telegraph has reported that the Russian government will issue its very own cryptocurrency, the CryptoRuble.

The report cited local Russian papers, who quoted the minister of communications, Nikolay Nikiforov.

Earlier this week, head of the Central Bank, Sergei Shvetsov, said that he would work with the Prosecutor General’s Office to ban Russian citizens from accessing cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, calling such currencies a “negative phenomena for our markets” and a “pyramid scheme.”

Now it appears that the Kremlin will create its own cryptocurrency – one it can keep an eye on — which, some might argue, defeats the entire purpose of cryptocurrency.

However, like other cryptocurrencies the CryptoRuble will be based on blockchain and will presumably help prevent online fraud.

CryptoRubles will be exchangeable with regular Rubles, although the systems of exchange have not yet been set up. Experts think that Russia is hoping to stimulate e-commerce without the need for foreign money markets, which will allow them to have more independence from the United States.

According to Nikiforov, the Russian government is setting up its own cryptocurrency under the assumption that if they don’t, other European governments will.

Said NIkiforov, “I confidently declare that we run CryptoRuble for one simple reason: if we do not, then after two months our neighbors in the EurAsEC will.”

Traders using CryptoRubles will be asked to provide documentation of retail transactions and services rendered – or pay a 13 percent tax for undocumented transactions, leaving a wide loophole for money laundering.

Critics say that Russia is trying to facilitate, while also profiting from money laundering; that the Kremlin is stealing the market from other cryptocurrencies; and that the CryptoRuble fundamentally defies the spirit of decentralization that inspired other cryptocurrencies.

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