Email Your Stress Away

As you start contemplating your New Year’s resolutions, here’s one that can help generate a healthier, happier you.

Stop checking your e-mail. 

At least, stop checking it so frequently.

A new study evaluated a diverse group of people including students, financial professionals, and medical professionals, among others. They divided the group in half first, permitting the first half to only check their e-mails only three times a day.

The other group checked their e-mail as frequently as they liked. Halfway through, they flip – flopped

The results? Pretty clear.

In both groups, people felt less stressed when they checked their e-mail less frequently.

Was it easy? No. But it was effective. And the question was wonderfully simple

Less Email = Less Stress

  So why not give it a try? Here are a few tips that just may help lower that stress level at both work and at home.

  1. Choose specific blocks of time during which you will read, answer, and process your email.
    Do a 30-day trial, implementing the conclusion of this study—then assess the difference in stress you experience. Discipline yourself to keep your email program minimized (or closed) during the rest of the time.
  2. Turn off the email notification on your computer.
    The average person is interrupted from their tasks at work every three minutes. Those little “dings” every time a new email arrives are designed to get your attention. And they do just that. Preventing you from keeping your attention where it needs to be.

  3. Disable the push notifications of new email messages on your cell phone.
    Or better yet…disable the email app entirely. Do you really need to be accessible every moment of the day? The gravitational pull of those emails is directly proportional to your addiction to them.

Are you already so overwhelmed with your Inbox that you are preparing to declare email bankruptcy? Need some critical care resuscitation before you can make these changes? Check out Michael Hyatt’s excellent method of staying on top of your email (but not more than a few times each day!)

Do you have some experience struggling with your email load? What has worked for you?

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