This has been a bit of a doosy for me. I have my IOS devices set to auto-bcc myself on all of my sent emails so they populate in my inbox. Because of this, I began using the subject line of my emails as a way of jotting down and sending myself notes for later. After several months of this habit, I've filled my inbox with a lot of "emails to self" that make it difficult for me to get real work done. I would like to/have been been trying to design a gmail search criteria that will allow me to filter out these messages in particular so I can move them to a separate folder out of the way of my inbox.

I would like to create a search that captures:

ALL emails sent by me TO THE EXCLUSION OF emails with ANY recipients (to/cc/bcc) who are not me.

The difficulty I've run into is that, because all of my sent emails auto-bcc me, I'm having trouble separating emails that only have me as a recipient (to/cc/bcc), which I would like to include in my search, from emails that have me bccd, but which also have other recipients (i.e. all of my other sent emails)

Figuring out this search criteria will save me days of work. I would be so, so grateful if anyone can help me figure this out. Thank you so much!:)


Useful motivating question: how can one search for emails with an empty "to: " line, but still capture emails with a non-empty "bcc: " line?

Some other forum links I consulted trying to tackle this over the past hour or so:

How can I set a Gmail filter that finds email sent "only to me"?

Search Gmail for emails without any CC recipients

  • From the Gmail search interface there is no way to search for 'nothing' or for 'everything'. You can search for 'something' or the absence of 'something' You might search for all emails that are from you, as well as to you, as well as bcc'd to you. This assumes you didn't also send yourself messages that were intended for other people..
    – Blindspots
    Sep 1, 2022 at 18:34
  • or you could search for all messages that were BCC'd to you but not to you.
    – Blindspots
    Sep 1, 2022 at 18:35


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.