“Easier said than done,” you’re probably thinking. How to deal with email overload is one of the most consistent questions I’m asked with respect to increasing productivity. The truth is there are no easy answers. The key is to find the strategies that work for you and implement them.
If you’d like some ideas on how to better manage your email, check out The Hamster Revolution. The book contains some simple tips for creating more effective emails and managing email glut. For a quick lesson on organizing your inbox with folders and rules for incoming email, click here to visit The Hamster Revolution web site. Harvard Business Review online also provides some excellent tips on managing email.
Finally, if you’re addicted to the ping of a new email hitting your inbox, check to see how often your email server is set to perform a send and receive. I’m willing to bet it’s every minute or two. Stop the madness! For starters, set your email to perform a send and receive only once per hour. That will guarantee you two productive outcomes: 1) You won’t be constantly interrupted, and 2) You will have created a built-in, hourly break for yourself.