I haven’t kept careful records or anything, but I am willing to stake my journalistic integrity on the claim that at no point in the past 10 years have I had an empty in-box. A few weeks ago, when I came back from a leave of absence, I had a four or five hundred e-mails in there. I’ve been winnowing ever since.
Last week the scroll bar on the side of my inbox window disappeared, indicating that I was in the endgame. It was like the leopard near the top of Kilimanjaro. That was when I realized I could take this thing all the way. I redoubled my efforts: if I could in any possible sense be said to have read and answered or otherwise dealt with an e-mail, or if I could possibly get away with ignoring it, it was outta there. This was some serious straight-up 43 Folders kung fu. (I don’t actually know what 43 Folders is, but isn’t this the kind of thing you’re supposed to do?)
Today I moved the final email to my ‘old’ folder. There was nothing left. My inbox was pristine, pure white, without blot or stain.
It’s fricking amazing. It’s like somebody lifted a giant rock off my chest that I didn’t even know was there. I am never going to let my in-box fill up again. Never. Iron discipline. Read it, deal with it, archive it or delete it. I will never get distracted, never relax my vigilance — hey look, the Spore Creature Creator is out!