I know many people have one email address for work, and one email address for personal things. They can be completely separate, hosted by different hosts and accessed using different software. This separation makes it easier to stay productive by focussing on work emails during work, and on personal emails the rest of the time.

I would like to keep this separation of contexts (a work context and a personal context) as much as possible, while using just one email address. For reasons I won't go into, it's become next to impossible for me to train my contacts to send certain types of email to one address, and another type to another email address. But having one inbox for all the emails makes it harder for me to avoid context switching (a productivity drain).

Here's what I am looking for:

  • The ability to categorise a conversation as "work" or "personal"
  • When someone sends a reply to that conversation, the reply automatically is considered the same context as the conversation (labels or folders that only work with messages instead of conversations don't meet this criteria)
  • The ability to set up a rule to say that emails from specific senders should be automatically categorised in a specific category
  • When archiving a conversation, it should not lose its categorisation.
  • When unarchiving a conversation, it should not have lost its categorisation.
  • It should work with more than just two contexts "work" and "personal", you should be able to create new contexts on the fly for new projects and close those contexts when no longer needed
  • Not sure what “context” means functionally. But seem I could use Gmail with label and filter to do what you described.
    – kenchew
    Sep 16 '20 at 16:52

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