Our emails can get away from us. Even after you flag them, make a list, or save them for later replies, the inbox can get overwhelming. This leads to stress and anxiety. It can get so bad that you simply avoid looking at the inbox until absolutely necessary which you risk missing an emergency.
Step 1: Only view your inbox three times a day. One hour after you begin work, after lunch, and 30 minutes before you close down for the day. The first hour of work should be spent planning the day and wrapping up what was left over from yesterday.
Step 2: Create folders based on response time needed. Below are the folder names.
- 01 – end of day
- 02 – end of week
- 03 – end of month
- 04 – end of quarter
- 05 – travel/tickets
- 06 – reference
Step 3: Folders 01 thru 04 should be viewed daily to ensure emails are moved based on time as that time approaches. Once the email is replied to or the task is completed, move it to a folder based on the project or person, OR delete it completely. Folder 01 is priority.
Step 4: Share this technique with everyone you know. Spread the word about productivity and focus.