Subject: How to win the war with your inbox
I can remember when I was younger and all I wanted to be was an adult. I wanted to have a great job, amazing friends and for some reason I thought I was entitled to an amazing salary which would allow me to live the 20 something year old dream. (INCREDIBLY NAIVE I KNOW) I was so excited for the day that I would get sent an email to just me, not an info@ or a general email address, my very own. Ha, that’s embarrassing, but the truth.
So, the day finally came, I got my very own email, with a signature and everything (I know, I am one lucky girl) and with that came the mass emails… I stupidly downloaded the app (probably Gmail, fancy sponsoring us Gmail?) and in turn, allowed my personal life and private life to merge.
As humans we are scared of missing out. Social media didn’t spit out the term FOMO out of nowhere. Whether its friends, money, clothes, parties or holidays, whatever it may be… we don’t want to miss out and I guess that spills over into your work life. We don’t want to miss something, we don’t want to fuck up and ultimately, we don’t want to not reply…therefore for some reason, even as interns we allow our work life to sometimes take over. Now if you’ve never done that… PROPS TO YOU. Your stress levels I’m sure, are a little lower than mine -_-
So I started allowing myself to be pinged 24 hours a day, I would get emails sent to my phone at 7pm…8pm...9pm. I wasn’t on the clock but someone, somewhere was. When I would receive an email, I thought to myself what’s the harm? I’m only walking home, I can answer this email in 3 minutes and then it’s done… a mini sense of accomplishment on the way home, bloody great. However, this means you end up mentally working more hours than you signed up for. Without realising it, you’ve entered into an email cycle… the person gets back to you within minutes and you feel like you’ve entered a conversation that you thought you shut down with a simple reply.
There comes a point when you’re waking up at 7am to mentally check into a job that you only checked out of before bed. Not cool huh?
So, my advice to you… listen if you will. If you want to have work emails on your phone…. then have them, however be careful with how much you’re entertaining them. Turn notifications off! I mean it, doesn’t mean you can’t look for peace of mind while bored on the tube… but it does mean you won’t get prompted and reminded with what’s happening at work.
Tip number 2, ok you’ve decided to go into your emails for peace of mind, sure… but as you open your inbox immediately scroll through and flag down the junk… get that shit outta there ASAP. Then go back down and mark all emails that can wait until tomorrow, anything where the deadline isn’t asap… you don’t need to do/answer straight away.
This is something you have to force yourself to do, put your personal life first and know there will always be an email you can answer, however if it’s not urgent… then why are you treating it like it is?
P.s who enjoyed the amount of …’s in this post, I certainly did.