Its not you, its me.
I just can’t be chained to you anymore email.
We’re breaking up.
Reading The Four Hour Work Week has inspired me to do something I should’ve done a long time ago (and would’ve had i know it was possible.) That is, break my all-day, energy-consuming, time-draining addiction to email and free up my energy to be truly productive in all my endeavors.
I was exactly like most Information Workers, spend all day online, and process a constant torrent of emails. This practice effectively prevented me from deep engagement in any one project in favor of a general, “multi-tasking” mediocrity.
One simply can’t maintain depth and focus with constant distraction.
The first move is to limit the times you check email. I chose a particularly low workload period to implement this shift so as not to alarm my clients and vendors. I built a simple auto-signature using basic HTML code and added it to my outgoing mails.
Something like: “Email Productivity Policy: To maintain maximum effectiveness I check email only twice a day at 10am and 4pm MST. If you need to reach me for urgent business call my cell:…
You can take a look at mine here:
I use Gmail so I had to download an extension; Gmail does not allow HTML signatures natively. The Better Gmail extension for the Firefox browser does however and it is easy to implement and has a few extra bells and whistles you might like. I set my signature to float, meaning it will always post directly under my latest writing.
I have had no complaints on this move and I have not missed anything that could not be handled later. I intend to move to once a day soon and can foresee no problems with this shift either.
This simple(though previously frightening) shift has already allowed me to achieve much greater focus, feel a greater sense of productivity and clarity, and be exponentially more productive throughout my workday.
I highly recommend giving it a try.