Up until recently I used to check my work emails on my I-phone every 20-30 minutes throughout the evening, sitting at home on the couch.
Not only evenings, but weekends and holidays as well. It was all a bit sad really.
It wasn’t for any particular reason, it was more like an automatic reflex. And if I went a prolonged period without checking them, I started to get a bit edgy and irritable…
I was addicted.
I have always had an addictive personality, and I have been addicted to many different things throughout my life. But I never thought I would be addicted to work emails however.
Wow, I am getting old…
So on realising I had a problem, I decided to do something about it.
About 6 months ago, I went cold turkey.
I didn’t just switch the work emails off from my smartphone, I completely uninstalled the server, so as to resist temptation.
So now when I leave the laboratory I don’t check my emails again until I am back in the laboratory.
And sure enough, the sky hasn’t fallen. The emails sit there quite happily, waiting patiently for me to look at them. And when I do get round to looking at them the next (working) day, there is a little pile of them which I can then deal with somewhat ruthlessly, and certainly much quicker than answering them “individually” at periodic intervals.
Apart from addiction there is another good reason for not checking emails out of normal working hours. The majority of incoming emails are from people looking for something, a bit of your time, a bit of your expertise, a bit of your life…
Follow your own agenda, not other people’s.
March to the beat of your own drum…
I have five children, and a sixth on the way. I now have better things to do in the evening, like changing nappies!
But checking work emails at home is now a thing of a past. Trust me, there is not much that cannot wait in the world of microbiology…