My New Email Strategy

If you’re anything like me, you get too many emails. Way too many. To makes matters worse, I check a lot of email on my phone (we don’t have Internet at home) and then they get lost in the shuffle more often than I’d like to admit. Anyone else have that problem?

Well, I’ve got a new strategy I’m going to give a go. You’ll find out soon that it’s not a new strategy at all, it’s just new to me trying it.

I already use gmail labels, and even have some emails filtered directly to those labels. I probably could have more filtered but we’ll see if I change that.

As I was reading George O Wood’s latest book, Roadtrip Leadership, I came across this old organizational tidbit. Thomas Trask quotes Dwight Eisenhower who said that he only touches a piece of paper once, he either files it, responds to it, or throws it away.

Now, Ike wasn’t talking about email but I am. My new email strategy is to touch each email once and then file it from there. The emails I’m not ready to respond to can stay in my inbox for when I get back to work. But, no more waiting to label and archive everything when I have over 1000 in my inbox.

I also use the starred inbox in gmail. So, emails that I won’t respond to long term or are very important get starred. That way they stay at the top of my inbox. I don’t let this number get over ten emails.

So far, so good. Though winter break is one of the slower email times. But I do still get a considerable amount of them.

What’s your email inbox strategy? Have you been using the Eisenhower method already?

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