One Key to Being More Productive? Skip Checking Your Email in the Morning.

Noted Lifestyle Designer Tim Ferriss recommends avoiding e-mail during the first 2 hours of your day. Doing so will clear your mind and allow you to focus on accomplishing your own goals.

What's the Latest?

Eric Barker has an interesting article up today at The Week that shares a list of six things you can do to become more productive both at work and in everyday life. It's a smart piece that's really worth a read.

One of Barker's more enlightening points is about the toxicity of e-mail, in particular the routine of starting your day by checking it. Not only does e-mail pose a huge distraction, it also  inevitably forces you to react to other people's issues instead of focusing on your own goals. The same goes with social media -- it's all fancy flashy lights keeping you from your main objectives.

What's the Big Idea?

Barker interviewed best-selling author Tim Ferriss for the piece and asked him to contribute on each of the six points. Ferriss, on e-mail:

You might need to get into your email to finish 100 percent of your most important to-dos. But can you get 80 or 90 percent done before you go into Gmail and have your rat brain explode with freak-out, dopamine excitement, and cortisol panic? Yes.

That's just a lovely image, huh?

The focus of Barker's article is how to maximize your productivity when most Americans claim up to 17 hours of their work week are wasted. He provides a number of reasons, backed by science, why e-mail can be poison for productivity and how checking it in the morning is an awful way to start your day. Ultimately, the solution to wasted time is the excision of tempting distractions.

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