What if I could show you a method to shave 15 minutes each day off of the time you may spend on your email? Would this make a difference in your life? Helping you save 15 minutes each day would free up greater than 2,225 hours over the course of the next twenty-five years. That’s equivalent to 285 work days (2,225 hours divided by a typical 8 hour work day = 285 days). That’s more days than a lot of people work in a whole year!
What can you accomplish having an extra year of labor? Would that be worth spending 15 minutes to understand the device I developed for processing your email?
If you’re like most people, you have challenges with your email. Perhaps your in-box is definitely supported. It could be so backed up that you would be embarrassed to tell someone exactly how many messages have been in there. A lot of my clients (before they learned my system) had a backlog of several hundred messages inside their in-box. This caused those to waste time sorting through their messy in-box looking for messages which needed their attention.
However the main problem I find with my clients is that they simply spend a long time on their email. I teach my clients to get more proactive and much less reactive. It will help these to be a little more efficient, effective, and successful in their work and private lives. Email provides a huge temptation to become in a reactive mode. You might have majorly important, even time sensitive goals on your own plate, yet you’re still spending time from those goals to read through email messages regarding the most irrelevant things imaginable, and sometimes even spending time to answer those messages!
Many individuals, in an attempt to escape the distraction due to their email, choose to bury their heads inside the sand by not processing their email for several days, resulting in an enormous backlog that leaves them overwhelmed with no hope of ever fully catching up.
One of the better aspects of my product is that it’s VERY SIMPLE. This will make it simple to learn and implement. However, you almost certainly have numerous years of bad email habits which will need changing and old habits die hard. It’s planning to require a really strong commitment plus some discipline to create the new habits, but once they’re established, it will be simple and easy , natural.
Step 1: Create two new folders named “*URGENT” and “*NOT URGENT”. Put the “*” in the beginning of the folder name so it will sort to the top of your list of folders. You might also us an underscore “_” or some other character for this function.
Step 2: Create folders for saving emails which you may need later. If you have these folders, you might need to generate newer ones, or rename and reorganize those you might have so that they make more sense.
Step 3: Figure out how to make use of the filter system in email as a to do list and set up as many filters as you can for messages that you don’t have to see straight away when they arrive. As an example, should you be on any email discussion lists, where you get several messages each day or each week, create a filter that automatically sorts all of those messages into one of the mail folders. In this way they will never appear inside your in-box and they can be neatly organized into folders.
Step 4: Make sure you have a great spam filter in position. Everyone receives a lot of spam nowadays, but having a good spam filter will eliminate the majority of it.
Step 5: Learn my system for processing your in-box. You can use this process to empty your in-box very quickly, even though it offers countless messages inside it. Have your messages sorted from newest to oldest and process the latest ones first. In this way, if you have a conversation involving several messages, you won’t reply to an older message, only to later find that your response had not been relevant to the present stage from the discussion. Process your messages inside the order they have been sorted – one at a time. Don’t ggxmmq to skip around your in-box so as to process the better important or urgent emails first. That was the existing way of doing things. Believe me, you may be much more efficient in the event you go through them within the order these are sitting there in your in-box (don’t skip around!). Your primary goal at this time of processing your in-box is to buy it to empty and to sort your messages quickly and efficiently into folders for working with later. At a second stage you will end up actually addressing the important messages.
Don’t open any messages that you simply don’t have to so that you can decide how to deal with them. Make an effort to decide based on the Sender and also the Subject. If you have to open the content then scan it as soon as possible to make your decision on how to deal with it. I’m not crazy about those “preview windows” simply because they offer a temptation to see emails that you’re not actually ready to cope with yet. You might like to try turning your preview window off, although this is not just a critical part of my system.
Listed below are the four choices for how to handle each message. You might want to post these alongside your computer while you’re learning the device and establishing new habits.
Delete It: The delete key should become your brand new best friend. Take joy in each message that you simply delete because it’s simply not important enough to get your attention. Think of all time you’re freeing up for other things. Delete, delete, delete. Your goal should be to delete up to possible.
File It: If you feel you might never have to read it or do anything along with it, but you will need it later for reasons unknown, then save it in one of the folders. However, don’t place it in your *URGENT or *NOT URGENT folders – these use a different purpose. You will occasionally have to make a whole new folder to save your messages inside an organized fashion.
Lower Than 2 Minutes – Practice It: Should it be something you need to read, or something you would like to read reply to, or something you want to forward, and you can do it in under 2-minutes, then do it properly then. Then either delete or file the content immediately to have it out of your in-box. If it’s planning to take more than 2 minutes, DON’T Practice It, instead do the following:
URGENT or otherwise URGENT Boxes: When the messages needs reading, replying, or forwarding, and you estimate that it will take more than 2-minutes, move it either to your URGENT box or perhaps your NOT URGENT box. The URGENT box should be for messages which need action in the next 24-48 hours and also the NOT URGENT box is made for the remainder. These two boxes are for important messages only! If something is irrelevant, maybe you shouldn’t be squandering your time on it. Perhaps it needs to be deleted or saved in your folders (apart from the URGENT and NOT URGENT boxes) in the event you want it later. However, should you have trouble breaking your practice of answering unimportant messages, then you might like to create a third mail box called “*NOT IMPORTANT”.
Step 6: Use the above system to process your in-box to empty once or twice per day. It will be simpler if you stay on top of it daily. You should be able to get it done in less than a quarter-hour daily if you’re really after the system and never getting caught in the temptation to respond to messages that take a lot more than 2 minutes. Should you get behind, that will happen every once in awhile, don’t panic or drop the program all together, instead, utilize the system to get swept up. You will be able to process a very backed up in-box with countless messages quickly. You will definately get faster when you practice applying this new method.
Step 7: Schedule 1 or 2 times daily to go through your URGENT and never URGENT boxes and browse, reply to, and forward messages. Try to get these boxes to empty. Carry out the URGENT box first, then start the NOT URGENT box. On days that you have almost no time, don’t bother with the NOT URGENT box. If these boxes start to get supported, plan a more substantial amount of time to process them and acquire caught up.
Step 8: Figure out how to choose powerfully. This technique doesn’t leave room for you to be indecisive – especially when you find yourself processing your in-box. Before, when you weren’t certain of what to do with a note, you almost certainly just left it within your in-box. You’ll must break that habit. Once you process your in-box and your URGENT and never URGENT boxes, ensure it is your goal to select powerfully how to handle each message – just decide, act and don’t spend time.
Step 9: Break reactive habits. For the sake of being more proactive and fewer reactive in your life, I suggest that you shut off any “you’ve got mail” type reminders. In the daytime, when you go to your email program so that you can compose a message to someone, resist the temptation to read through your email while you’re at it. Instead, process your mail in the times you have scheduled for the purpose. Performing your email in blocks of scheduled time will help you process your email more effectively and intelligently, and it also will help you remain focused on all of those other important tasks you’re focusing on without getting distracted by your email regularly. You may want to develop exceptions. For example, if a person emails you about an appointment later on that day, you may want to read that email right away to find out if any action is necessary prior to the appointment. However, make these kinds of “read straight away” emails the rare exception and never the norm.
Step 10: Maintain your system. About once per month, take the time to unsubscribe from the lists which are sending you mail that isn’t worth your attention any longer. Create any filters that would be helpful. Proceed through and delete any saved mail folders that aren’t relevant any further. Go through your NOT URGENT box if it really has been supported for quite a while and process it to empty. Examine your body and take into consideration how it may be improved, etc.
Bonus Step: Now, take constantly you’re saving and take action meaningful along with it! Spend it on the 20% of the actions which will get 80% of the results. Should you don’t really know what I’m speaking about, read my newsletter on the 80/20 rule
If you appreciate my email system, you will probably love the ebook, “Getting Things Done, The ability of Stress Free Productivity” by David Allen. I actually have almost all of my clients read through this book.