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Tell a friend managing email overload


Just counting the legitimate, non-spam stuff, are you overwhelmed by email? You’re not alone. Email overload is a problem facing everyone from students and teachers to high-level executives to Congress. Too much email consumes your time, stresses you out and even impairs your mental acuity.

What to do? Organizing guru Julie Morgenstern says it all in the title of her new time-management book: Never Check E-Mail in the Morning. And Merlin Mann, proprietor of 43 Folders (no relation to 43 Things), seems particularly fascinated with email management and personal productivity. For those facing information overload, Mann advises canceling something and getting a fresh start with email, among other email management tips.

In addition, business columnist Penelope Trunk suggests getting control over your email by separating your email from your "to-do" list; responding to email within 24 hours even if it means composing short, non-"amazing" messages; and sorting by sender to find out if you can compile a single response to the few people who have been sending you the most messages.

(Update: Farai Chideya defines a "happy inbox.")

You can help others manage their own overload by avoiding common email pet peeves — and whatever you do, do not email and text message while intoxicated!

Posted January 20, 2006 by Mariva in business, career, resources, social

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