I don’t exist to serve my email inbox

I don’t know about you but it doesn’t matter if I’m sick for a day, am away at a conference for a day or two, or on vacation. When I get back to my computer, the situation is always the same – I have thousands of unread emails demanding attention.

But it’s not just when I ignore email for a few days. My phone is used more for text, Slack, and email than for phone calls. So just ignoring my phone for a few hours results in the same kind of pressure.

A few weeks ago read this quote from Charles Richards:

One man gets only a week’s value out of a year while another man gets a full year’s value out of a week.

It made me reflect on how I use my phone, how I think of my inbox, and so much more.

The ultimate question I asked myself was this: Who is the boss? In other words, do I exist to serve my email inbox, or does it exist to serve me.

When you think about it in this context, it is pretty easy to realize that in order to get a year’s worth of value every week, I need to be the master of my own time and energy and not let a red ball with a number dictate how I spend my valuable time.