We all get tons and tons of emails. Most of us try to respond within a reasonable amount of time. Even though we are working on projects and going through the messages, our inbox become very full.

There has been a study done by Brain Uzzi and Stefan Wuchty of Northwester university stating that your email response time is directly related to how well you know and actually care about the person you’re corresponding with. So, with that, you can determine which emails (and who) take up most of your time.email Jonah Lehrer, writing for Wired Science, explains the results from the study: On average, people reply to their close friends within seven hours of getting the email.

However, when corresponding with professional contacts, we tend to take longer and not reply almost 11 hours. The biggest difference came within the study was with emails received from people we barely know. With those emails, we took nearly 50 hours to respond. So how to keep your inbox from all of that overflow? Check your clock. If you have had an email that has been there longer than 24 hours, it may be time to consider trashing it or moving it to another folder.

You can even create several different inboxes for certain clients, projects or jobs. If an email has been sitting there for a while, it is obviously less important than your emails that have come and gone. If you can take the time to go through all your emails, sort them, and redirect the ones that are not important, your inbox will be empty in no time.