Are you hooked on your emails? Do you jump straight to your email when you hear the notification? Do you really need to read your email as soon as it pops into your inbox? If you are like most people, the answer is probably not. Emails are potentially one of the greatest time wasters and changing how you handle your email may save you an amazing amount of time.
5 tips to managing your emails more effectively
- Turn off your automatic notifications – This will stop the temptation to check your email every time one arrives.
- Schedule time to read email – Schedule specific times to go through your email. Avoid your most productive hours and preferably avoid the very first hour of your workday.
- Use different emails – If you are able to, use different email addresses for personal and work email.
- Review your email subscriptions – Is your inbox clogged with useless subscriptions? Time to unsubscribe. In fact, anything that isn’t adding to your productivity should be given the boot. If you absolutely must have these subscriptions or you can’t decide which ones to give up, then use email filters to automatically move these emails into specific folders. You can drop the subscriptions that you consistently never get round to reading!
- Apply the two-minute rule – Any email that you can deal with in 2 minutes, deal with it then delete it. Anything that needs more time, put it on your task list to deal with later. Everything else should be deleted so that you don’t waste time looking at it again. If you’re wondering what to do with emails that you might need later but don’t need to do anything with immediately, my suggestion is to file it and remove it from your inbox. The idea behind this exercise to ensure that you only touch an email once which will keep your inbox down to a minimum.
When you first apply these tips, expect to experience withdrawal symptoms. Yes, email is an addiction, so resist the temptation. If you are changing your work habits, persist for at least a week. Every day that you stick to the new regime will make the next day easier.
“When I was a CEO of a super fund, working 4 days per week and juggling motherhood,
time management was an absolute necessity, not a luxury.” ~ Mi