Monday, February 20, 2012

If you do one thing this week...

Get your email inbox under control.

Some people rave about only having a few emails in their in-box at any given time. They are always organized and under control.

Others can’t seem to get ahead of the never ending string of emails. They might need to reference those informational emails from their coworkers. Those online coupon codes might be useful in a few days. They have several clients to respond to but need to look up some information first. There are several dates that they need to put on their calendar but haven’t found the time to actually do it yet. Each day the influx of emails crowds their in-box and they feel more and more unorganized.

If the latter better describes you and you feel like your email is holding you hostage, just do one thing this week and start getting your in-box under control.

Depending on the size of your email in-box, it may not be feasible to get your email under control in one day. Life is still happening, right? New emails are coming in and you can’t ignore your usual responsibilities. So, just do one thing every time you check your email.

-If you have an email or two that requires no action on your part, delete it, file it or archive it.

-If you’re on an email list but you never actually read the emails, take 30 seconds and unsubscribe.

-If you’ve been postponing a response, take a few minutes and just do it. Don’t let it hang over your head.

-If you need to put something on your calendar, do it and delete or archive the email.

-If you have an email with an action item that can be delegated, forward it on right now.

You are probably thinking, these examples are way too simple. Of course I should respond, delete, delegate and file my emails. But, for so many, the problem isn’t knowing what to do…it’s actually doing it!

So, this week I'm challenging you do get rid of one unnecessary email at a time (each time you check your email). Depending on the number of times you open your in-box, your email could be under control by the end of the day! Even if it takes a week, month, or year, don’t give up. Be consistent, and before you know it, you’ll be one of those people who brag about only having 3 emails in your in-box!

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