With the advent of e-mail, our lives have become so much easier; we are able to suddenly communicate with anyone around the globe and in real time! It has been one of the best inventions, however; it can also be one of the biggest time-management wasters if not managed correctly. Just think about how much time you spend on your email everyday…do you even know? Could it be a total of 3 hours, 5 or even more? I bet you if you really recorded how much time you spend on email in total a day, you would be shocked!

If you really want to improve your productivity and learn a great time management skill, master your email! Consider implementing the following steps and build this success skill over time.

6 Steps To Master Your Email

1.     First unsubscribe from all the mailings you don´t need or really want. This will save time having to keep on deleting them every day and subconsciously you will also feel better when you have less emails to deal with.

2.     Be brief when you reply to emails. Try to say whatever you need to in no more than 4 sentences wherever possible. Remember, if you need to have a conversation, rather pick up the phone and make a call! Think of most of your emails as text messages – be brief and get to the point! Of course, depending on your work, you may need to send lengthy emails, but I am sure, you don´t need to all the time!

3.     Make a time in the day to check your email. Depending on your work, perhaps every 3 hours, 2 hour or better only twice a day. Every time you check your email, you interrupt what you were doing and you lose focus. You become distracted and you waste a lot of time but doing this over and over throughout the day.

4.     Process all your emails and keep your inbox at 0! I know this idea might seem unrealistic to some, but this is the most important.  Don’t read your emails and leave them there to re-read later. This is where you can really increase your productivity and again one of the most important time management tips regarding emails. Process each email and decide what to do with it. Do you want to delete it, reply, put it in one of the folders, on your list of things to do, what? Make a decision when you first see it.

5.     Create folders in your email to assist you with step 4. Then you can refer to them later; allocate time in your day as well to review these folders.

  • ·         To read later
  • ·         Deal with later
  • ·         Waiting for / Follow up on
  • ·         Reply today

6.   Tell your family and friends not to send you lots of emails that distract and are considered ¨forward on¨ emails. Tell them also to be brief and send shorter emails to you or to even phone you instead after work!

Perhaps you need to spend a few hours cleaning out your mailbox, but you will feel so much better having organized your emails. Your mind will be clearer and open to focus on more productive things!

Kirstin O´Donovan, Productivity Coach – Want 7 Simple Strategies to Triple Your Productivity? – Free Access to E-Course –  www.topresultscoaching.com


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