Email is by far my most frequent mode of communication, followed by instant messaging. I could do without a phone completely if my wife weren’t sure to call me a hermit.
As such, I get an obnoxious amount of email per day. I subscribe to a number of internal distribution lists internally, participate in several technical groups, keep in regular touch with my customers, and trade lots of emails with the rest of my team. That amounts to an average of 300 new email messages delivered to me per day. To say I am continually behind reading email is a massive understatement.
I wrote last year about Reclaiming My Outlook. I took a class from McGhee Productivity Solutions, but I haven’t followed the advice soundly enough. I routinely kept 300-400 emails sitting in my inbox at any given time. I spend a lot of time playing “Beat Delete”, in which the writer of the email needs to be succinct enough to beat the time in which I am going to hit the delete key. But still, a lot of emails accumulate in my inbox from picking and choosing which ones to process, thinking that the others needed more attention than I could give right now… I’ll just leave it there and come back to it.
I started re-reading “Take Back Your Life!”, and I finally got it. Just do what it says… email becomes a task, a calendar item, or an entry in the Deleted Items folder.
Not in the 2 YEARS that I have been working for Microsoft have I seen this… except for today.
Yep.. that’s ZERO ITEMS in the ol’ Inbox. As a matter of fact, I have no emails in any of my folders, either. Everything has made it to the task list or the calendar… or the bit bucket.
And to think that I opened my email this morning (yep, on a Saturday) with 381 emails sitting in the inbox, many of which were dated back in October 2005.