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This year I’ve been letting a new VA into my inbox.

I felt like I was fighting a losing battle against the constant barrage of email, and even though I had what I thought to be a pretty robust system of filters and tags, it was still taking up a ton of time every day.

A little over an hour a day, 7 days a week, according to RescueTime.

Time to Hire Help?

Several friends have recommended getting an email VA — someone to help sort through incoming messages, craft simple replies, and essentially serve as a gatekeeper so you only have to see the messages that truly require your attention.

So I took their advice.

And in the few months we’ve been working together, I’ve been pretty impressed with my new VA.

In fact, she’s saved me from over 2000 messages so far.

But here’s the kicker: “she” is software, not a person.

How it Works

It’s a tool called Sanebox that plugs into your email account, analyzes your inbox behavior, and begins sorting the messages it deems important from the ones it thinks are probably less so.

And while there have been a few false positives in both directions, the sorting algorithm is crazy smart.

In my case, all the “not important” messages are dumped into a folder called SaneLater.

Clean up your Inbox now

You still have full access to all your incoming mail (I was worried about missing something), and I tend to check that folder a couple times a day.

If I find something miscategorized, I just drag it back to the main inbox.

(Or vice versa, and the system learns for next time.)

There’s also a folder called “Blackhole” where you can drag messages you never want to hear from the sender again.

My Results

Now I’d heard of Sanebox before but never tried it until this year, when they reached out to sponsor my podcast.

I figured if I was going to do a convincing ad read I’d better test it out and see how it worked … and honestly it’s hard to imagine going back to my old way.

And more importantly, according to RescueTime, my time in my inbox is down 2-3 hours a month. I’ll take it!

Your Turn

If you want to give Sanebox a shot, they put together this special deal for you:

A 2 week free trial (no credit card required) + $25 off any paid plan.

They only condition is you drag emails from me back into the main inbox 🙂

Check it out and let me know what you think!

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