Productivity Playbook

Tips to Make Inbox Zero Work

Get Started and Stick With It

Tim King
7 min readSep 3, 2021
Photo by erica steeves on Unsplash

It’s a myth to some… a dream to others, and while certainly elusive, Inbox Zero can be achieved by mere mortals — yes even you!

Email as a system that hasn’t really evolved over the last two decades other a shift from desktop clients to web based access systems like Gmail.

But fear not! No matter the system you use to access and manage your email you can still instigate and successfully operate a sparkling clean inbox.

First I want to dispel a few common myths of zero inbox…

Myth One — It’s difficult to start inbox zero…

The most pessimistic of the myths you’ve ever heard about inbox zero.

If you believe this then you’ve already resigned to fail before you even start.

Really it’s not that hard. Pick a time when you know you get the least amount of mail throughout the day and get to work. You need to start by drawing a line in the sand, that doesn’t mean you have to complete every outstanding email you have… far from it.

Myth Two — It’s hard to keep inbox zero working…

Bzzzzzzz… Wrong.

Once you have the right setup, and the discipline to keep it up, it’s usually the other way around. Stopping will be more difficult because it means you’ll have to return to the hideous mess that was your inbox before you started.

Myth Three — I can’t start a zero inbox because of <insert your lame excuse here>…

Because why? There isn’t a single reason you can think of other than sheer laziness as to why you can’t start getting to inbox zero right now. What’s even more interesting is that once you start it’s an addictive process to finish all your emails.

Having an inbox is one thing, being able to lay your hands on a specific email, sent by a specific person on a specific date about a specific topic? That is a superpower, and it makes you look, and feel, like a productivity genius to others —and you’ll turn into one soon enough!



Tim King

Creative Copywriter, Content Strategist, and Futurist creating conversations about Technology, Productivity, and the Future —