Quick poll. Do you start your day by opening your email? Follow up: How long does it take you to delete your undesirable emails before you get to the good stuff? If the answer is greater than or equal to zero seconds, you need an intervention.

To understand the situation in full, it's helpful to think of your unwanted emails as bags of garbage, and your inbox as your home. If you get even five emails a day from stores, old credit cards, or expired memberships, that's five bags of garbage stinking up your home. There's only one thing to do: get rid of them.

But it's not enough to get rid of them. Why throw out the garbage everyday, when you can never have garbage in the first place? Here's a vocabulary word for you: unsubscribe.

At the bottom of most emails you'll see a small line of usually gray text that gives you the option to unsubscribe. Don't just mark it as Spam. Get those emails out of your life for good. Companies want to bombard your inbox with emails just for that slight chance you will open it and go to their website, and with the even slighter chance that you will log on and buy something.

And get this, it's illegal for marketing emails to abstain from giving you an unsubscribe option, according to the CAN-SPAM Act, and other similar laws.

If you're concerned about real Spam, there's usually a Report Spam button in most email accounts. (But also make sure you unsubscribe as well, because just clicking this button won't actually unsubscribe you.)

When your email is free of unnecessary junk, you'll spend less time everyday going through those same emails you never read or find useful. It's a five-second process that will save you a lifetime of daily stress.

For more on Inbox Zero, check this out!

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