Organizing Emails

March 11, 2013

A typical day in Casa Kinch looks like this every morning. Hubs leaves for work at 6:30, I fall back asleep until 8 then crawl out of bed, make some coffee, grab the vitamins and get started on emails for the day. 

I've made it a priority to make sure I respond to emails in 24 hours. Why? Because when I'm the receiver, I'm dying to get a response and hate the waiting. Sometimes, life gets the best of me and that 24 hour mark turns to 48 and sometimes 72 but I know I make it a goal to be timely in my responses.


I use Gmail and have every folder color coded. I am used to them by now so I know when I see purple on my inbox, it's related to blogger, blue goes to design and so forth. This makes it easy to identify what's there and whether it needs a quick response or it can wait.

Each category has their own subcategories in my mind. Things I file under my keep folder include items from old pictures of Elle, recipes from my MIL, documents with discount codes and even the copy right file from our wedding photographer. Doing it this way keeps them clean but also uses your space wisely without having 100 folder with 2-3 emails each.

Once I've categorized my email, I go back and make sure it also stays in my inbox because I know it's an ongoing conversation. For example, design clients are always filed under "design" but when the project is in the process of being done, it stays in my inbox until it's completed and is then moved to "design" only. This helps me visualize my daily to-do list for work because I know those are the designs in my queue at the time.

Check your spam daily! I still have to remind myself this all the time. There are a handful of times I've forgotten and then found a million and one emails from potential clients. Make a habit of checking it daily so you can avoid it getting buried and are intentional with a quick response.

There you have it, four simple steps to eliminating stresses of emails and the overwhelming sense of urgency they can cause. I hope my little tricks bring a small sense of peace when you tackle that inbox next time. And, I'd recommend coffee!


  1. I really need to organize my inbox better, so thanks for this, one question though, how does Gmail know which email goes to which folder?

  2. I literally just did this last night!! I did not know you could color code though!! How do you do that??


  3. AHHHH Aubrey! I love you even more after this post. hehe I am an over organizer. It's crazy ridiculous but keeps my life on track. hehe Thank you for sharing this. I have my work email set up but didn't know I could do it with my gmail! Love, Love, Love

  4. SO smart to do the color coding! I have gmail and I have yet to utilize this! :)

    Going to start tonight.


  5. Great advice!

  6. Checking your spam is one of the most important ones that I forget!

  7. I have so many different email accounts, it is sometimes hard to keep track of them all. But good tips! I will have to keep those in mine for my business. Have a good one!

  8. I was actually thinking about doing this eventually in my non work email. It's a mess! Thank you!!

  9. Love this! definitely need to get better about my email. it gets hard when i am at work before 7am and thats when my brain functions best so by the time i get home, i'm somewhat braindead about everything i need to do and all the emails i need to respond to.

  10. This is such great advice! Crazy inboxes can be overwhelming and they give me a headache! I love the color-coding idea. I'm going to have to try it!