What if I could show you a way to shave fifteen minutes per day off of the time you would spend on your email? Would this make a difference in your life? Helping you save 15 minutes per day would free up greater than 2,225 hours over the course of the next twenty five years. That is equal to 285 work days (2,225 hours divided by a typical 8 hour workday = 285 days). That’s more days than most people work in a whole year!
What would you accomplish having an extra year of work? Would that be worth spending 15 minutes to find out the system I developed for processing your email?
If you’re like lots of people, you might have challenges along with your email. Perhaps your in-box is always backed up. It might be so supported that you will be embarrassed to inform someone exactly how many messages have been in there. Many of my clients (before they learned my system) enjoyed a backlog of countless hundred messages in their in-box. This caused these to spend your 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 lot of time on their email. I teach my clients to be more proactive and fewer reactive. This can help them to be a little more efficient, effective, and successful in their work and private lives. Email offers a huge temptation to get in a reactive mode. You might have majorly important, even time sensitive goals on your plate, yet you’re still spending time away from those goals to see email messages regarding the most irrelevant things imaginable, and even taking time to respond to those messages!
Many individuals, in an effort to escape the distraction caused by their email, decide to bury their heads inside the sand by not processing their email for many days, leading to an enormous backlog that leaves them overwhelmed with no hope of ever fully catching up.
Among the best reasons for my product is that it’s Very Easy. This makes it very easy to learn and implement. However, you probably have many years of bad email habits that can need changing and old habits die hard. It’s likely to require a really strong commitment and some discipline to produce the newest habits, but once they’re established, it will likely be easy and natural.
Step 1: Create two new folders named “*URGENT” and “*NOT URGENT”. Put the “*” at first in the folder name so it will sort to the very top of the listing of folders. You could also us an underscore “_” or any other character for this purpose.
Step Two: Create folders to save emails which you might need later. If you already have these folders, you may want to produce newer ones, or rename and reorganize those you have so they make more sense.
Step Three: Figure out how to utilize the filter system in email as a to do list and set up as many filters as possible for messages that you simply don’t have to see immediately whenever they arrive. As an example, should you be on any email discussion lists, that you get several messages daily or per week, create a filter that automatically sorts all of those messages into your mail folders. By doing this they are going to never show up in your in-box and they will be neatly organized into folders.
Step 4: Be sure you have a good spam filter set up. Everyone receives plenty of spam these days, but having a good spam filter will get rid of the majority of it.
Step 5: Learn my system for processing your in-box. You can use this process to empty your in-box rapidly, even if it has numerous messages in it. Have your messages sorted from newest to oldest and process the latest ones first. This way, when there is a conversation involving several messages, you won’t reply to an older message, simply to later find that your response was not relevant to the present stage in the discussion. Process your messages within the order they are 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. Which was the previous method of doing things. Believe me, you may be a lot more efficient should you go through them inside the order they are sitting there in your in-box (don’t skip around!). Your ultimate goal at this stage of processing your in-box is to get it to empty and to sort your messages quickly and efficiently into folders for coping with later. In a second stage you will be actually addressing the important messages.
Don’t open any messages that you simply don’t must so that you can decide how to handle them. Attempt to make the decision based on the Sender as well as the Subject. When you have to open your message then scan it as soon as possible in order to make your decision on what to do with it. I’m not excited 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, even though this is not just a critical part of my system.
Listed below are the four choices for how to deal with each message. You may want to post these alongside your personal computer while you’re learning the device and establishing new habits.
Delete It: The delete key should become your new closest friend. Take joy in each message that you delete because it’s not important enough to get your attention. Think of all time you’re freeing up for other things. Delete, delete, delete. Your goal must be to delete as many as possible.
File It: If you feel you might never must read it or do just about anything by using it, but you may want it later for reasons unknown, then save it in one of your folders. However, don’t use it within your *URGENT or *NOT URGENT folders – these have a different purpose. You may occasionally have to make a new folder to save your messages in an organized fashion.
Under 2 Minutes – Get It Done: If it is something you want to read, or something you would like to read reply to, or something that is you would like to forward, and you can accomplish it in less than 2-minutes, then do it right then. Then either delete or file the content immediately to get it from your in-box. If it’s likely to take greater than 2 minutes, DON’T Get It Done, instead perform the following:
URGENT or otherwise URGENT Boxes: If the messages needs reading, replying, or forwarding, and also you estimate that it will require more than 2-minutes, move it either to your URGENT box or maybe your NOT URGENT box. The URGENT box ought to be for messages that require action inside the next 24-two days and the NOT URGENT box is perfect for the remainder. Both these boxes are for important messages only! If something is irrelevant, perhaps you shouldn’t be squandering your time on it. Perhaps it needs to be deleted or saved in one of your folders (apart from the URGENT and never URGENT boxes) in case you want it later. However, should you have trouble breaking your habit of answering unimportant messages, then you might like to develop a third mail box called “*NOT IMPORTANT”.
Step 6: Use the above system to process your in-box to empty a couple of times each day. It will be simpler should you stay along with it daily. You will be able to do it in under 15 minutes daily if you’re really after the system and never getting caught within the temptation to answer messages that take a lot more than 2 minutes. In the event you fall behind, that will happen every once in awhile, don’t panic or drop the device together, instead, use the system to have swept up. You should be able to process an extremely backed up in-box with numerous messages very quickly. You will get faster as you practice applying this new method.
Step 7: Schedule 1 or 2 times per day to undergo your URGENT and never URGENT boxes and browse, reply to, and forward messages. Try to get these boxes to empty. Do the URGENT box first, then begin the NOT URGENT box. On days you have almost no time, don’t bother using the NOT URGENT box. If these boxes start to get supported, plan a more substantial period of time to process them and acquire caught up.
Step 8: Learn to choose powerfully. This technique doesn’t leave room for you to be indecisive – especially if you are processing your in-box. Previously, once you weren’t absolutely clear on how to deal with a message, you almost certainly just left it inside your in-box. You’ll need to break that habit. When you process your in-box as well as your URGENT and NOT URGENT boxes, make it your primary goal to pick powerfully how to handle each message – just decide, take action and don’t waste time.
Step 9: Break reactive habits. In the interest of being more proactive and less reactive in your life, I would recommend which you switch off any “you’ve got mail” type reminders. In the daytime, when you go to your email program to be able to compose a message to someone, resist the temptation to read your email while you’re at it. Instead, process your mail at the times you may have scheduled for your purpose. Doing your email in blocks of scheduled time will help you process your email more efficiently and intelligently, and it will help you to remain focused on all the other important tasks you’re working on without getting distracted by your email regularly. You might like to make some exceptions. For example, if someone emails you about an appointment later that day, you might like to read that email right away to find out if any action is required ahead of the appointment. However, make these types of “read right away” emails the rare exception and never the standard.
Step 10: Maintain your system. About once per month, take the time to unsubscribe from the lists that are sending you mail that isn’t worth your attention any more. Create any filters that could be helpful. Undergo and delete any saved mail folders that aren’t relevant any further. Undergo your NOT URGENT box if this has been supported for quite a while and process it to empty. Examine your system and take into consideration how it could be improved, etc.
Bonus Step: Now, take constantly you’re saving and make a move meaningful by using it! Spend it on the 20% in the actions that are going to get 80% in the results. In the event you don’t understand what I’m talking about, read my newsletter on the 80/20 rule
If you appreciate my email system, you will probably love the book, “Getting Things Done, The ability of Stress Free Productivity” by David Allen. I actually have most of my clients read this book.