Here are a few tips to help you stay out of your inbox:
- Minimize Checking Your Email – Only check your email 2–3 times a day. Don’t look at it repeatedly in between tasks, no matter how tempting that might be.
- Stop Reading Your Email Everywhere – You don’t need to read your email everywhere. You don’t need to check it in the car… in the elevator… in the restaurant. In fact, turn off your email on your mobile device. Do you really need to check email in the bathroom?
- Get Action Items OUT of Your Inbox – Your inbox is not a todo list. Get those tasks out of your email and onto your actual todo list. This will prevent you from looking in your email to see what isn’t done yet.
- Use Other Communication Tools – Email is good for some things. However, there are more efficient communication tools out there that will keep your communication on track. My virtual assistant and I communicate mostly via Trello (for projects) and have recently started using Slack (for more immediate messages).
- Turn Off Notifications – No one wants to hear those incessant new email pop-ups on your desktop or chimes on your phone. Turn them off. Your email will still be waiting for you when you return to check it. Better yet, close your email application when you are not using it.
Get Out of Your Inbox
Stop spending too much time in your inbox.
Many people spend long hours in the office when they could get their work done if they would stop playing with their email.