“The big rewards come to
those who travel the second, undemanded mile.”
–Bruce Barton (1886–1967)
American advertising executive
What if you checked email only 3 times a day?
For about a month and a half, we’ve been doing this as a team at JustSell to see if it helps us.
Check and handle email upon arrival then check and handle email at lunch. Check and handle email after 4 pm. At home, check it all you’d like (but hopefully that won’t be more than once a day).
Here’s what we’ve learned so far…
- We recognized our addiction to checking email.
- We identified how it became a default task (automatically checking it when returning from a discussion, meeting, trip to the bathroom, etc.).
- We saw how we sometimes used it to hide out from our more important work (“If I’m addressing email, I’m doing something. It may not be the most important thing in the long term but at least I’m of use at this moment.” – Do you see the problem with this thinking?).
- We learned that our email could wait* and that as the day came to an end, we were more productive and happier. (Although the first few days were very uncomfortable and had us oddly distracted by our lack of distraction.)
Why is it that we would allow ourselves to be distracted from what we rationally know to be our more important work that gets us closer to our goal of making good things happen?
(how to check email 3 times a day)
* Our customer service people check email hourly in order to be sure we’re addressing customer needs quickly. We don’t believe we’ve lost any sales and we’ve had no negative feedback on our response times.
** And if we still have your attention… This spelling of the word indicates a deeper level of crazy – so cwazy that we’d spell it cwazy. You think that’s crazy?