Time Management Tips: Manage your email in 4 simple steps to maximize your productivity and gain an hour a day!
It’s easy to lose control over your day when all you do is focus on your email. Don’t get me wrong, email can be a great communication tool; however, it can take a lot of time out of your day too if you let it control you. How many times a day do you check your email? Do you let it drive your productivity? Are you an email hoarder?
Some people live in their inbox and they allow the email of others to control their time. They spend their day responding to email and the tasks and projects that come from email instead of deciding which tasks are important and which goals need to be accomplished first. It’s easy to get trapped by the allure of your inbox only to wonder where the day went because you didn’t get as much done as you planned. You can waste a lot of time if you don’t know how to manage your inbox. But it doesn’t have to be that way if you follow these time management tips and use your inbox as a productivity tool and guide versus letting it control your day and your life.
Here are some Time Management Tips for managing email:
1. Before you turn on your computer or pick up the phone at the start of your day, just pause. When you sit down at your desk in the morning, take a few deep breaths and think about what you need to accomplish.
Do this exercise every time you begin a new project or assignment. This practice will help you remain calm, centered and focused to accomplish tasks more carefully and productively.
2. Don’t rush to reply to your email right away. Briefly scan your email for messages from clients and changes to your daily schedule but unless it’s urgent, don’t reply. Then take some time to plan out and schedule activities for your day, including email.
3. Close your email and get to work on something that helps you monetize your business or create more sales, profit or value for your company.
4. Then after you’ve accomplished the important tasks, look at your email again and schedule it, file it or delete it to clean out the clutter. Read and reply to your email after you’ve completed major tasks on your schedule. I wait until the end of the day to do this.
There are other time management tips for managing email you can use too:
- Don’t think you have to respond to all the mail you’re copied on.
- If you want someone to take action on an email, write directly to them or better still, pick up the telephone.
- Shorten your email messages to get a quicker response.
- Clean out your inbox at the end of the day when there are fewer distractions. You’ll have less email to address in the morning.
- Remove yourself or unsubscribe from email lists at least once a week. I actually do this daily. If you find you’re deleting a lot of emails and not even opening them, get them off your list!
There are just some strategies you can use to take control over your inbox. This week, we discuss those strategies and more time management tips with my Time Management Radio guest Araceli Gonzalez.
Araceli is Founder & CEO of Be Productive Today, a company dedicated to helping self-employed professionals and business owners build and run productive and highly profitable businesses while enjoying more time off. Araceli shares her tips on how you can reduce email in 4 simple steps and gain an hour a day–plus we discuss lots of other great time management tips and techniques for managing your inbox so it doesn’t control your life.