The Rest RN Blog

Here’s what cleaning out my inbox of 14,000 emails taught me

Woman hand with cell phone and email emojis

So if you follow me on social, you may remember the battle with my inbox this weekend. I woke up to a notification that I had met my Gmail storage limit. I wonder why…. Could it be that I had 14,000 emails in my inbox?

I know that some of you probably just had a minor coronary thinking about having more than 100 emails in your inbox. For those of you who are very digitally organized like that, my sincere apologies. Take heart, it does get better.

I’m really good at keeping lots of details organized in my head. Often to the point where my brain is constantly ON and the “to-do” list is on constant replay.

My physical world can reflect this. My desk is organized piles, some would even say “cluttered”. My phone has about 4 screens of apps in no particular order. And well, then there’s my inbox…

But 14,000 emails is ridiculous and unnecessary. So I began the much overdue process of unsubscribing and deleting like a boss. And as I engaged in this tedious process, I felt a weight I didn’t know I was carrying slowly lift from my shoulders.

Lessons from an Overloaded Inbox

I’ve been holding on to too many “maybes, sometime, or just in cases”. I have hundreds of emails that I have read with a coupon code, or an offer, or a resource that I was just holding on to. But did I ever need that information again? No. If I really did need the information, could I probably find it easier and more up-to-date with a simple Google search? Yes.

I am a woman of many interests, ideas and dreams. But that doesn’t mean I have to be all things to all people. I’m on A LOT of email lists in a wide variety of topics and interests. As I was noticing this, wisdom from a coach mentor popped into my head, “When we straddle too many different things that’s when we get exhausted.”

I wasn’t necessarily investing time in all these different things I was getting emails about. But when I logged into my inbox, mentally I was spread thin. I would see an email and think “Maybe that would be cool or what if…” and down the rabbit hole I would go.

I need to develop a daily habit of editing my inbox. As a Stress & Well-being Coach I love paying attention to habits. When you change your habits you change your life.

I know that if I don’t implement a habit of editing my inbox, I will quickly get back up to 14,000 emails. I enjoy the feeling space and clarity the process of cleaning out my inbox has given me. So I’m implementing a habit to keep that up.

It’s a myth that multi-tasking makes you more productive. We actually function best and have less stress when we can practice being fully present to one thing or idea at a time. Cleaning out my inbox is helping me practice being more focused and letting go of the extra.

What’s one action that you can do today to LET GO of something that is taking up too much of your mental energy? Is there something you can do to practice being present instead of multi-tasking?

In health and joy,


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Karen Doiron

Transformational Health & Life Coach

I am here to fully empower you to reclaim your life from the impacts of stress.  There is hope that you can easily implement and maintain healthy habits that will create abundant energy. 

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