Seven principles to simplify email

Half of the eight billion humans alive use email.1

Some of us rely on it daily.

We browse our inboxes dozens of times a day, likely because items require time, don't have a clear resolution, or because we need to wait til we can take action.

I aim at inbox zero, which means I try to keep my email inbox empty.

Others adopt inbox infinity, a phrase coined by Taylor Lorenz in early 2019, "accepting the fact that there will be an endless, growing amount of email in your inbox every day, most of which you will never address or even see."2

Here are my principles to minimize the time spent looking at email.

Defining principles that work for everyone—or even a single person at different moments in life—is hard. This practice seems to be working for me right now. But I'll continue to adjust it over time.

Do you have other tricks to simplify email? I'd love to know.

  1. This statement is based on information provided by the 8 Billion Lives, INFINITE POSSIBILITIES: The Case for Rights and Choices report by United Nations and the How Many People Use Email? report by Oberlo, which state that the human population surpassed 8 billion people in November 2022 and that 4.26 billion people used email in 2022, respectively. 

  2. Don't Reply to Your Emails by Taylor Lorenz. The Atlantic. 2019. 

June 13, 2023
Nono Martínez Alonso

My sketches and stories, in your inbox.

One email per week. No spam ever.

Pencil sketch of Nono Martínez Alonso.