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.