Every once and a while I look at trying to optimize how I handle email. After 10 years at Microsoft I have a few tricks but I like to the force myself out there and change things every once in a while.

This time I used a number of techniques from Scott Hanselman’s excellent post - “The Three Most Important Outlook Rules for Processing Mail” to help kick start my efforts. The Meeting Invite rule is my personal favorite. My current position here in Shanghai has me working with at least five different product teams and this means a lot of email to process as well as a lot of meeting invites. Scott’s rules are variations on ones I have been using but he did a great write up and they are well worth having a look at.

Not really connected to email rules, but another habit I changed was not reading RSS feeds inside Outlook. RSS support in Outlook is a great feature but I felt that I wasn’t didn’t have the enough discipline to not read them all the time. I now use FeedDemon to read my RSS feeds and my life has a little more balance (+ FeedDemon has some great features).