SaneBox Success Story: How Emily Finally Won the Battle Against Her Inbox

“I’ve been fighting a losing battle against my inbox for 4 or 5 years…I was having serious problems with losing urgent emails. I was just lost in all the clutter.”

SaneBox Review From Emily Lakdawalla of the Planetary Society

Emily spends her days encouraging space enthusiasts to explore the final frontier. But somehow she kept getting lost in the outer limits of her inbox.

As the senior editor and planetary evangelist for the Planetary Society—a nonprofit organization dedicated to space research and exploration—Emily blogs about everything from drilling on Mars to the moons that orbit Pluto. She also writes about space science for Sky & Telescope Magazine. From the latest planetary news to emails from her nonprofit’s membership base, she’s got a lot to keep track of.

Staring into the vastness of space? Fascinating. Staring into her inbox? Terrifying.

“I’ve been fighting a losing battle against my inbox for 4 or 5 years,” she said. “I get tons of emails, and I’m on tons of mailing lists. I have members who need to be replied to, and I was having serious problems with losing urgent emails. I was just lost in all the clutter.”

The worst offenders: public relations people who keep adding her to email lists that aren’t even remotely related to what she writes about.

“Important emails were getting shoved down off the bottom of my inbox before I had the time to deal with them, and then I would lose them,” she said.

Emily needed to create some space in her inbox before she imploded under the weight of all that junk. She tried using Gmail’s tagging system, but important missives still slipped through her grasp.

Then, one day while browsing Twitter, she found her lifeline. One of the space experts she follows mentioned SaneBox, so she decided to give it a try.

The drop in her inbox count was drastic and nothing important was missing.

Upon launching her email after adding SaneBox, Emily recalls, “my initial reaction was that it made my inbox less terrifying to look at. It really helps me a lot by keeping the important stuff on top of my inbox, and it’s saved me from missing the important conversations.”

Email Tracker - Before and After SaneBox
Emily keeps a spreadsheet to track how many read and unread emails she has in her inbox each day so she knows how well she’s doing to reach inbox zero.


Once she had inbox zero within her grasp, Emily stopped using her inbox as a to-do list and made it her daily mission to clear out emails as quickly as possible. She’s gotten more disciplined about immediately handling the emails she can deal with on the spot while filing the rest away. SaneLater helps by setting aside the trivial stuff, which she sifts through once a week on Monday mornings.

With the help of SaneBox, Emily has been able to bring her inbox under control by taking a triage approach to email.

“I leave things unread if I can tell from their subject line that I don’t need to open them,” she said. “The fact that they’re unread reminds me that I need to deal with them later. If there’s a personal email, I’ll open it and read it right away. If I can handle it immediately, I will. If it’s just a question that I can reply to quickly, I will.

“Now I try to get email out of my inbox as fast as I possibly can, and I no longer use my inbox as a to-do list, which is how I was using it in the past,” she added.

“I’ve started interacting with my email a little bit differently. I can stay on top of the urgent emails in my inbox,” she said. “It just really helps me to handle my inbox.”

And all those unwanted email lists she got added to? “I’m just going to throw them in the SaneBlackHole,” she said.

SaneBox Email Management - Betty

What is SaneBox?

It’s time to escape the dread of opening your inbox. SaneBox is an easy-to-use inbox tool that makes your current email manageable again. Learn more about the full suite of features and take back your inbox today »


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