These 7 ways are very useful as they save my time and energy and they reduce any worry I may have had in the past about whether I should have replied to everyone instantly, or not.
If we don’t take control over the way we respond to email, we will never have enough time to actually do all of our work – the activities we want to achieve every day, proactively, rather than the reactive action of replying to emails. We will also struggle to find sufficient leisure time – and this is something I feel we would all like more of, not less!
makes sense then to use this knowledge to work through emails appropriately. Leave the ones that take a lot of thought until you feel able to work through them efficiently and swiftly and handle the ones that take less effort when your energy levels may be lower.
3. Use SANEBOX to filter your emails - I started using Sanebox about 3 years ago and I have never looked back. It filters your emails so that only the really important ones find their way into your INBOX. You train it so that the emails that you designate as important will always stay that way; the less important ones go into a less important box, called sanebox.
4. Have faith - Have faith that if someone really wants to get in touch, they will phone you or contact you by another method, then relax. We cannot spend our lives beholden to the idea that someone sometime may want to get hold of us ‘urgently’ via email. Email is NOT an ‘urgent’ method of communication, so keep this in mind instead of worrying.
5. Keep your emails short and succinct wherever possible - You know how it feels to receive a long email (awful!) – so don’t do this to your contacts! You may need to write long ones on occasions, however don’t routinely write long emails, keep the message short or pick up the phone instead, then summarise after the call with an email, using bullet points.
6. Set Expectations - Consider setting up an auto reply email for everyday use, (not just holidays).
This lets people know how frequently you check your email so that their expectations for when they are likely to receive a reply are clarified – I received a great one the other day and I didn’t find it in the least offensive, I think it makes much better use of our time to bulk reply to emails rather than replying off and on throughout the day.
TIP: Aim to be ‘in the flow’ for longer periods at a time to be more effective at everything you do.
7. See your INBOX cleared, de-cluttered, or with minimal emails in it – how good does that feel? Feeling on top of your emails is a great feeling, it’s the opposite of feeling overwhelmed with them all (I speak from experience! And I know a lot of people receive a lot more than I do, I’m convinced that we all get too many.)
When you decide to take control of your INBOX you will feel much better about them and once you start a good habit, it’s easier to keep it going... Good Luck!
If you would like to find out more about Claire and how she can help support the wellbeing of staff in your school, please visit www.clairefuller.com