Are you overwhelmed with the number of emails you receive each day? Is your email inbox now serving as a holding place for all the messages you’ve received this year? Well, there is a better way to handle email and ensure you have an empty inbox each day. Here are four easy steps from productivity expert, Elizabeth Bowman, of Innovatively Organized based in Seattle, WA.

1. Remove yourself from mailing lists you don’t need
Be very choosy and start clicking the unsubscribe button at the bottom of emails you receive. If you aren’t finding time to read the messages and they are becoming clutter in your inbox, go ahead and get yourself off the mailing list.

2. Follow the Two Minute Rule and sort emails quickly
The two minute rule is something we use often to help make quick decisions with emails. Here’s what you should do: Each time a new email arrives in your inbox, ask yourself “Can I respond to this in two minutes or less?” If so, then respond right away! Don’t click or open another message just to read it. Be diligent and respond to the message you have open quickly before moving on.

3. Create a folder for End of Day and End of Week emails
For email messages you receive, that take more concentration to answer or you need to find out more information before responding, move then into a folder labeled “End of Day” of “End of Week.” Using these folders will help you prioritize email messages as they arrive but also ensure that you have a timeline for responding.

4. Move appointments and tasks from emails to your calendar
For many of us, an email that arrives really means that a new task has arrived to our inbox and requires our time to tackle it. When this happens, don’t fret but just go ahead and move the email text directly to your calendar and schedule time to complete the task it has assigned to you. You may also want to add the task to your to-do list.

To read more email and productivity tips from productivity expert, Elizabeth Bowman, check out her blog where new tips and tricks are posted often.

You can also attend one of her upcoming webinars on topics such as Email Management 101: How to Keep Your Inbox Empty on Thursday, October 27, 2011.
Click here to sign up for free.