This is the story of why I like to use Boomerang. It works with Google mail so if you don’t use Gmail or don’t want Google to have your e-mails then it’s probably not for you. (Although you might find this post by Benjamin Mako Hill an interesting read, if you are keen to block Google from accessing your emails. I digress…).
If you’re like me and use your e-mail inbox as a bit of a “to do” list, well you probably know that it isn’t the most efficient of such lists. You probably have another, real to do list somewhere else (my pieces of paper floating round my desk) and have to balance your inbox with that list/those lists. Maybe, like me, you also leave messages for yourself on your calendar for any important deadlines, and every now and then you try to block out time on your calendar and plan in advance so that your colleagues can also see
how busy you are when you’re available.
I once read somewhere that every time you have to read an e-mail twice, you’re wasting time! And yet you sometimes do have to read them twice: once to know that it’s nothing urgent (perhaps on your smart phone, of an evening), and then a second time when you’re ready to deal with its contents (eg the next working day). OK, so checking e-mails on your smartphone like this is definitely a waste of time, but sometimes you read stuff at work and know that you can come back to it in a couple of days, or even later.
Then, you leave it in your inbox and later you have to wade through your inbox to get to the e-mail that you know is now urgent/important, and there’s a risk that you might not remember it in time. Who hasn’t had to apologise to someone for leaving their e-mail buried for too long? I know it’s not just me…
With Boomerang though, I can send emails out of my inbox, and set them to come back at a time when I will need to/be able to deal with them. You get 10 such “boomerangs” per month for free: it definitely helps to keep the clutter out of my inbox.
Now all you have to do is to get rid of the uneasy feeling that just because your inbox is not packed full, that does not mean that you have no work to do!