Frequently Asked Questions

How does this service work?

You can use this service to send yourself an email and get it back one month later.

Why a month?

There's something about a month. When you receive an email from a month ago odds it'll no longer be top of mind but it's recent enough that you'll remember writing it. It also seems like checking in with yourself once a month is good habbit if you want to reflect more.

What do you do with my email?

Once we receive an email we ignore attachments and only grab the stripped-text. Our mailprovider may parse it with a spam filter once received. If the message looks clean it is stored for 30 days until it is sent back.

After that it is deleted from our system. Forever.

Can somebody read my email?

Yes, the maintainer can. The maintainer has no interest in reading any emails but the maintainer does have access to it. It is really hard to receive an email and be able to send it back without being able to read it.

An effort is taken to make sure that the email contents are protected but the encryption keys are available to the maintainer of this project. Again, the maintainer has no interest in reading your email but there is a notion of "trust" here.

How is my data stored?

When you send an email it is handled by postmark before it's sent to our backend. We encrypt your email adress, subject line and email content before we store your email in our database.

When it's time to send the email back we decrypt everything and have postmark return the email. Once we receive a confirmation, we delete everything from our database.

Postmark does apply logging to all sent/received mail messages for debugging purposes. These logs are available to the maintainer of the project but these logs are deleted after 45 days.

Are you tracking anything?

Not if we can help it.

Postmark offers tracking services but our project chooses not to use them.

The only thing that we tally is the amount of emails that we send back per month. It's required to keep track of this number because it influences the postmark bill. We don't mind understanding this number though since it does serve as a proxy for the popularity of this project.

How is this service maintaining itself?

It takes a lot of people using this service before it costs more than a free tier at a cloud provider. The maintainer of this project gets a lot of value from this system and decided to share it. Should costs skyrocket then either the project will be abandoned or something with payments will happen to ensure it can continue.

If you'd like to sponsor the project, you can buy the maintainer a coffee.

How do people use this service?

Odds are that when you try this the first time that it's actually harder than you might think. What do you want to write to yourself?

Some people like to remind themselves of goals. Other people like to keep themselves accountable by keeping track of promises that they made to themselves. There's also people who just want to give themselves compliments. It's really up to you what you do with your email.

The main feedback we've gotten is that folks really appreciate the new perspective they get from getting a letter from their past self. Often the big problem from last month is very small now, or at the very least it changed. Observing this can be extremely powerful because it helps you reflect.

What are some conversation starters?

Here's a list of questions that might be fun to ask yourself.

  • What did you touch earlier today, your breakfast or your laptop?
  • What was the coolest thing that happened this month?
  • How easy was it to work on that new habbit?

If you'd like to submit some more ideas, feel free to DM the maintainer on twitter.

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