Part of the reason why we’re so busy these days is that we’re so damn accessible. It’s at our places of work, it’s on our phones—ever since email started getting big in the late 90s, it’s just become more inescapable as time passes. It’s a convenient tool to keep in touch, keep records of our conversations for important information and for sending pictures, video and music.
But it goes the same way that any other form of communication goes eventually. Letters that you need to write back. Calls you need to return. People you need to visit. And now it’s a whole list of emails that you’ll probably never answer.
So why do we do it? Why do we rely on all of it so much?
Because as time passes and our urges to know everything, be everywhere and never miss out on a single opportunity increase, we feel the need to be connected at all times.
But how do we deal with email? How do we deal with having so many things that we’re supposed to reply to, but not the time to actually do it?
The Harvard Business School gives tips like:
- Checking email at designated times
- Making brief replies
- Clarity wins over over-describing
Or how about Getting Things Done, who has 7 tips including things like:
- Having everything go to one inbox
- Using hotkeys
- Unsubscribing to useless newsletters
There’s a ridiculous amount of information out there on how to better deal with your email woes. My Google search on “tips on dealing with email” yielded 60.8 million results. That’s a lot of people trying to help you out!
So if you’re like me and you’re feeling the pressure of more email attention than you know what to do with, how about taking a page from the book of the many that I’ve pointed to above and creating the discipline necessary to regain control of your life? (Or at least part of it.)