For years, my job mostly involved writing and sending emails to current or potential customers.  A business-to-business, or “B2B" relationship.

For years, I approached my approach to work the same way: when an email came in, I responded immediately.  I watched my inbox throughout the day, glued to the screen.

It was exhausting strategy, and I often felt fried.  My productivity suffered.  There wasn’t enough mental downtime to recharge, to perform at my highest level.

Eventually, I changed my approach.  I slated out 1-2 hour blocks, twice a day - once in the morning, and once in the afternoon - to check my email, and to do uninterrupted, focused email writing.  No distractions.

And here was the key: once I wrote my response - unless the matter was urgent - I kept my response as a draft.  I sent it at the end of the work day.

This allowed me to work like a sprinter.  It allowed me to be thoughtful, rather than rushed - and encouraged such a pace from others.

It also, I learned, allowed problems and issues to self-correct on the other end.  

It resisted the modern, anxiety-inducing habit of information excess, inbox-jamming, providing too much noise and not enough signal.   It is more effectual, and better for everyone involved.

Here’s the broader, key point: use this approach to all things device-dependent.  Own your attention and energy.  Set aside dedicated time for responding to texts, posts, emails.  Unless it’s urgent, don’t deviate.  

Let your mind rest from the pings.