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Don't panic: How to undo a sent email in Gmail

You’ll have to be quick though.

Image: Jazbeck via Flickr/Creative Commmons

YOU CLICKED SEND. Oh crap.

When you send a no-take-backs email — maybe an admission to a secret crush, or accidental reply-all — there’s an instant pang of regret.

It feels like there’s no going back.

Meet Gmail’s Undo Send feature, a lifesaving little hack buried in the Gmail Labs settings.

It gives you a 10-second window to “undo” sending an outgoing email.

You just have to enable it first.

Here’s how it works:

1. Click the gear icon in the top right corner of your Gmail window and select Settings from the dropdown menu

image2. Select Labs from the row of tabs

image3. Scroll all the way to the bottom where you see Undo Send and click Enable

image4. Hit Save Changes at the bottom

5. Breathe easy

Now when you send an email, the yellow dialogue that displays “Your message has been sent” will also give you the option to Undo.

image

Our tests consistently showed that you have about 10 seconds before the Undo option disappears. Click it, and the email will reopen, un-sent, in the composition window.

We weren’t the first to discover this cool trick. Jimmy Tomczak, founder of beach accessories company TOMBOLO, recently tweeted at me a link to an article by former Mashable editor and current Sprout Social editorial director, Samuel Axon. Gmail’s interface has changed since Mashable’s tutorial was published in 2010, so we updated the steps.

Note, features in Gmail Labs are experimental and may change, break, or disappear at any time. You’ve been warned.

- Melia Robinson

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Business Insider
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