Using texts, email, Facebook, twitter and other social media platforms we can now be in constant contact. This is great but it can be overwhelming. The smartphone made all this communication even more accessible. You can now read this blog post on your mobile, email someone and use social media, wherever you are. I love technology and I love all these different ways I can communicate and share with people all over the world. As a yogi I also don’t want to let the technology overwhelm and distract my mind. As a busy, self employed yoga teacher I don’t want it to undo my productivity. As a human being I don’t want it to take over my life.
I still remember being taught how to write an email. It wasn’t that long ago. I was 18 and it was 1998 and yet now 15 years later it is rare to find someone who doesn’t use email at all. Many of us receive hundreds of emails a day. The invention and growing popularity of the smart phone makes email even more accessible throughout the day.
As a busy professional who moves around teaching yoga this is great. My iPhone and more recently my ipad allows me to interact with my students wherever I am.
The first few years I had my iPhone I had it set to automatically update my inbox. So every time I got an email it would go bing. Bing…..bing…bing, all day long. After a while I became conditioned to the bing. Actually when you’re in the middle of some work it can be a welcome distraction to check your email but utterly unproductive. If your inbox is busy you could spend your entire day checking email. Believe me I have been there.
Sometimes your brain needs a break from all this bombardment. Some tasks require you to focus your mind in an uninterrupted way. Your job may require you to keep up to date with emails. Mine does. I love getting emails from my students, it’s a great way to communicate with them outside of class. So what’s the answer? Here is some tips that have helped me.
Check emails 1 -5 times per day. I check mine around 3 times but what works for you will depend on your job.
- If an email is urgent or can be responded in less than 3 minutes, reply straight away.
- Have a folder for emails that you don’t want to respond to or read straight away. Check this folder daily – read, respond, delete or file.
- Delete unwanted email.
- Clear your inbox daily, your mind will get clearer too.
- If you need to really focus on something place your phone on silent
It’s good to be flexible, rather than rigid. When on holiday I check my email once daily. If I am having an important email conversation I might check it more often. If it gets out of hand I go back to my rules. What is important is to fully engage with whatever you are doing. When checking email, check email, when writing write, when thinking, think – focus your mind, be here, you can not be everywhere – here is where it is at.Do you find emails distracting? How often do you check your email in day? Do you have any emailing tips?