Help! How to unsend email messages sent using Gmail

How often have you sent an email and then wished you could unsend it? Seconds after clicking the Send button you realise there is a problem, but what can you do? Unsend it and fix it!

Unsend emails sent with Gmail

Sometimes we make typing slips when entering email messages and don’t realise at first. You can bet that you’ll notice them just as you click the Send button on an email. It’s Sod’s Law, Murphy’s Law or whatever you want to call it: Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.

You might have replied to all instead of replied to an email and a whole bunch of people you never meant to email are sent a copy.

Seconds after clicking the Send button we realise that we missed some vital information from a message. That message you just sent that said “See the attached file...” You forgot to actually attach the file!

There are numerous instances of instant regret after hitting the email Send button and we wish we could take it back. You can!

1 Go to Settings

Go to Gmail in a browser. Click the gear icon in the top right corner to display the menu and then click Settings.

 Access Gmail settings in Chrome

2 Undo Send

Select the General tab at the top. Scroll down the settings a bit to the Undo Send section and tick the box, Enable Undo Send. Select the number of seconds for the cancellation period. You can have up to 30 seconds to change your mind and stop an email from being delivered after clicking the Send button.

 Enable Undo Send in Gmail settings

3 Save the settings

Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click Save Changes. It is easy to forget this and then wonder why settings you just set are not applied.

 Save Gmail settings

4 Send an email

Create a new email in the usual way and then click the Send button. It works just like it always did and the email is sent.

 Send a message in Gmail

5 Undo it

Look near the top of the browser and for the length of time you selected, up to 30 seconds, there is a notice. It says Your message has been sent. Undo. View message. Click Undo and it prevents the email from being sent.

You are returned to the email composer window and you can correct whatever problem there is with the message and send it again. There is also the option to cancel and delete it.

 Unsend an email in Gmail

Now there is no need to panic if you accidentally make a mistake when sending an email message. Using Gmail’s Undo Send you can take it back. You have to be quick about it, but at least you have a chance to correct it.

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1 Comment on Help! How to unsend email messages sent using Gmail

  1. I love this feature! But be aware that navigating to any other screen within Gmail (like reading other messages, moving doing a search, etc.) after clicking “Send”, and before the Undo time has elapsed, will dismiss the Undo link, and the message WILL send.

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