What do you do when you wake up and realize you have too many email accounts with various services and no idea how to simplify?
Start with a big piece of paper. List those pesky accounts and why you have them:
- firstname.lastname@example.org • address with home internet service provider–using it for official purposes and it’s listed on various accounts
- email@example.com • Official work e-mail (using it on LinkedIn.com as well)
- firstname.lastname@example.org • Primary personal e-mail
- email@example.com • I created this account because I lost my login to a gmail account created long ago ie. firstname.lastname@example.org and wanted to lock up the name
- email@example.com • I’m thinking of launching a business venture in the future and bought the domain, it came with email accounts
- firstname.lastname@example.org • I set this up when I got an iphone and wanted to use MobileMe
- email@example.com • I belong to several Yahoo! Groups and used it to create my Flickr account
Now take a moment to think. You need a strategy. What are your goals? What needs are you trying to meet?
- Simplify my record keeping
- Separate business and personal accounts
- Create a professional web presence that’s independent from my job
- Reduce email related stress
- Keep track of passwords and logins
- Remember about the emails seldom used
- Avoid checking a bunch of email accounts unnecessarily—who has time?
Can you think of other needs and goals or email accounts that could be added to the list? If so, add a comment below and I’ll walk through a potential strategy next week.
In the mean time, sign up for Chaos To Clarity’s free weekly newsletter and get your very own password keeper–it already has a section for email and you can create your own sections as needed. Print it out, carefully enter the relevant logins and passwords, keep it in a safe place, and feel a bit more in control immediately.