Day 81 – A New Unsubscribe Rule

by Dan


A number of my Daily Acts of Simplification have been unsubscribing to marketing emails and newsletters, and as previously mentioned that has made a huge difference to my email traffic. However, I got two such emails today that got me thinking. One was a marketing newsletter that relates to something I bought online a few months ago. It started along the lines of “Welcome to our first newsletter…we will send you one or two a week…” I unsubscribed immediately. So that’s today’s Daily Act done, right? I considered it at the time, but then I got another email. This one was a marketing email from a company that I purchased from TODAY, and I know for a fact that I selected the options NOT to receive emails from them. Again, I unsubscribed immediately. Uh-oh, so I’ve broken my rule of one Act a day?

I pondered all this for a bit and have now decided to relegate email unsubscribing to the category of Regular Maintenance Activities and therefore out of scope for Daily Acts of Simplification. Let me explain why:

1. I have cleared the main offenders that clogged up my inbox at the start of this process, you could say that I’m pretty much on top of it now, although there are still a number more to tackle
2. Whilst I am definitely still reducing my email traffic, there are always new ones trying to infiltrate my world. It’s like trying to empty a bath with the taps still running – there will be a net loss of water for a while, but it will take time and will never be completely empty. At some point this will become a regular maintenance activity, so perhaps now is the time
3. This will be a dull blog if I keep writing about the same thing. You get the idea, so let’s move on.
4. Not having these to fall back on when I struggle for ideas will make me think harder and get more creative – should spice things up a bit!

So the new rule is that I’ll nuke any future unwanted emails as they come in, and render them out of scope for Daily Acts.