~Sending email directly to your Nozbe inbox

Nozbe and iNozbe are two of my favorite applications. I use these applications for GTD (Getting Things Done) and they support the entirety of my business and personal productivity.

As part of the Nozbe user community, I try to spend some time each week answering questions on the user forum. By far, the question that I’ve answered the most, is how to forward email directly to your Nozbe inbox as a note or action item. This is important to GTD’ers because the essence of David Allen’s GTD system for processing your email inbox, is to do what you can with each message, (if it can be done within two minutes), and then to move actionable items that cannot be handled in two minutes to your trusted GTD system.

Forward email to Nozbe
Forward email to Nozbe

Nozbe makes this easy, because you can simply forward an email for which action is to be deferred to your Nozbe inbox. Here’s how its done.

Start by deciding whether to forward the message as a note or task.

Sending a Note
If you want a note, just forward the message to your Nozbe inbox using the address userid.pin.inbox@nozbe.us substituting your userid and pin where indicated in the email address. The subject will become the note title, and the message will be entered as your note text.

A message being forwarded to Nozbe as a note would look something like this.

To: userid.pin.inbox@nozbe.us
Subject: fwd: Johnson contract is beyond the limits of our RFP
I would advise that you contact Mary in Purchasing about the Johnson contract, since the most recent price increase is beyond our present ceiling for RFP. I would also notify Jim that there may be a delay in our purchase. Thanks, Sam

Sending a Task
If you want a task to be entered instead of a note, you’ll need to make some changes in the message you are forwarding.

  1. Change the subject to include only the word “Tasks”, making sure there is nothing else in the subject area. 
  2. Place an * and space before the first line of the message. To break the message into multiple tasks, just make sure you have a line break between tasks, and that the beginning of the line for each task starts with an * and a space. 
  3. Keep in mind that a task has a limited number of characters, so make sure you shorten the message appropriately.

The same message being forwarded to Nozbe as a task would look something like this.

To: userid.pin.inbox@nozbe.us
Subject: tasks
* Contact Mary in Purchasing about the Johnson contract.
* Notify Jim that there may be a delay in our purchase.

The date, time, and context can all be added at the end of each task line using additional parameters, but we’ll keep it simple for now and leave that for a future post. John

3 thoughts on “~Sending email directly to your Nozbe inbox

  1. paterick says:

    It looks like no matter how many different ways I try, I cannot forward an email to the Inbox “Actions” or (to-do tasks) list because it keeps going to the notes section of the inbox. What would be ideal is the forwarded email going to the Inbox Action list with the Subject line as the action and the content of the email as a note of the task and not of the project in this case that would be the Inbox and that would be more confusing. Right now all I am doing is creating more work for myself as the emails are forwarded to the Inbox Notes section in random order without any task attached to them.

    1. @Paterick – I agree it could be simpler. Like you, I like to quickly get my inbox to zero (see my latest post), and Nozbe implementation doesn’t make that as simple as it can be. I would prefer to have the subject as the task, and the body as notes. That would, however, remove the possibility of multiple tasks in a single email message. You might try just going to the first line in the message area and inserting an asterisk and a space. Then clicking the send button. That’s about as simple as you can make it. Of course you’ll need to clean up the task from your Nozbe inbox when you process it. John

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