How to Take a Break From your Email To Reduce Stress


Even if your job requires you to regularly check your email, you will need to take a break from your email to reduce stress. This is because, if checking your inbox becomes a habit, it leaves you in a “high alert” state of stress, according to researchers at the University of California, Irvine, and the U.S. Army.

In a research carried out on a group of people, they were asked to take a five-day break from email at work. During this time, researchers monitored the heart rates of the participants, as well as the number of times they switched between windows on their computer.

It was discovered that people without email benefited in many ways compared to those who continued to check their inboxes. “We found that when you remove email from workers’ lives, they multitask less and experience less stress,” co-author Gloria Mark said in a statement.

While people with email switched windows 37 times an hour, the abstainers changed only 18 times an hour. Those without email also reported that they were better able to stay on task, and had fewer time-wasting interruptions. However, they also felt isolated even though they relied upon coworkers with email for important information.

Those using email also showed more constant heart rates, as opposed to people in the email-free group, who had more natural, variable heart rhythms. The “high alert” state seen in the email users has been linked in other studies to higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

That is why in this article, we will share some tips on how you can get much more done without constantly sieving through unproductive emails.

Schedule times to check your email  

An average person checks their email more than 15 times per day according to research. This is too much. Except you receive large numbers of messages daily, you should give a reasonable timeline between the periods you check it. This will also help you address bulk emails at the same time rather than individually. Most importantly, schedule times for checking emails to give you room to attend to other activities. For most people with busy schedules, once every hour is fine.

Do not check your email before going to bed or after you wake up

Just like individuals who are addicted to Social Media, they cannot do without checking their social media accounts before they sleep or immediately they wake up. Same goes for emails. Make a resolution that you will stop checking emails before sleeping or immediately you wake up.

Tea break

Set Notifications

Whether you are using your personal computer or a phone to view your email, you can set your notifications. The notification will alert you whenever you have an email. Hence, there will be no need to check your email every second.

Store files and documents somewhere else

For some persons, they use their emails for various purposes, including to save important files and documents simply because they do not want to lose them. However, you cannot reduce your dependence on emails if you do not move these files to other places. You can move them to DropBox, Google Doc or you can backup using your hard drive. The best option will be hard drive because you do not need to go online before you access your files.

Use other options rather than emails

There are several ways to communicate with colleagues or superiors at work. The less you send emails, the less you receive emails. Except the message you want to send is extremely important, a chat media like Skype can serve whatever purpose you want.

Finally, keeping up with email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other sites 24/7 can be exhausting, bad for our brains, bad for our relationships, and bad for our productivity. When all things goes bad, stress mounts up. Don’t you think is about time you take a break from your email to reduce stress?


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