So I’ve written a bit already about my personal war with email. Managing email happens to be my personal Achilles heel and is emblematic of the larger problems of information overload that challenge all of us.
Edudemic posted a helpful article about Chris Anderson’s very practical campaign to get email under control. The article quotes Anderson:
an email inbox has been aptly described as the to-do list that anyone in the world can add an item to. If you’re not careful, it can gobble up most of your working week. Then you’ve become a reactive robot responding to other people’s requests, instead of a proactive agent addressing your own true priorities.
Anderson’s image of email as the world’s open to-do list for me is pretty apt and gets right to the root of my problem with email. I can’t respond to it all, I can’t answer it all, and I can’t use it all. It piles in and there’s never any getting to the end of it. I have never witnessed Inbox Zero is my personal or professional life but know that, if I ever did, the relief would be short-lived. You have to sleep sometime.
I am prepared to declare war on email. If you are ready to join me, you may find Chris Anderson’s “Save Our Inboxes!” to be a useful manifesto to lay the battle lines. Take a look. Share it if you find it helpful. I am considering adding the link to my work email as a gift to my c0lleagues. Celebrate clarity. Attach attachments. Respect recipient’s time.
Did you like the Email Charter? Let me know. I need to know I’m not the only one ready for battle.