In this episode, I look at reducing overwhelm in your business by changing your relationship with email. If you’re an intropreneur or a sensitive person seeking a healthier and more joyful relationship with their inbox, you’ll find useful strategies and mindsets that can turn your email from a chaotic virtual junk drawer into a source of ease and productivity.
In the first part, I discuss ways to cultivate an empowered mindset towards email management. It really is possible to improve! We’ll touch on key points like envisioning your ideal email experience, setting boundaries, and incorporating rituals to help you bring more presence & purpose to checking your inbox.
In the second part, I explore practical strategies to transform your email routine and organization.
Then I wrap up with a list of questions that will help you figure out how YOU want to relate to your own inbox and the actions that you want to take to create an experience that you feel good about.
Excerpts from the Episode:
“Email is like a huge virtual junk drawer, filled with messiness, overwhelm, and anxiety.”
“You engage with your email every day, why not make it an experience you enjoy?”
“Your time, attention, and focus are precious resources; build systems that maximize them and make you feel good.”
“Email is where our less balanced sides can play out, revealing people-pleasing and boundary issues.”
“Creating a system for your email puts you back in the driver’s seat.”
Systems for Ease
Create ease & increase capacity in your online business with systems, processes & human-centered work flows. I help you design the next level of your business the way that fits YOU best.
Learn more: heidijandel.com/ease
Listen & review: Podchaser.com/empoweredintrovert
Hello, my beautiful introvert friend. Welcome to episode number 22. Where we're going to talk about strategies for joyful email. Now, if you are a sensitive person who works for themselves, or you have a side gig, or you're just someone who wants to have a better relationship with your email. This will be very, very helpful. Because I find so often that email it's like this, like a huge virtual junk drawer. And there's so much messiness and overwhelm and anxiety around it. That it's really not a very fun experience yet. It's something that we, in that we engage with every day for some of us, it is the center of communications for our businesses. You might be okay. Kind of okay. With email or you might totally hate it. This was me. I used to really even be scared of my, my email, but it does not have to be this way. And your time. Your relationship with the things in your life. Is important. And when you take some time to reflect on what you would like it to be and make changes, then you have a great capacity to transform your experience of it. In the episode today, then I'm going to unpack a more empowered mindset for thinking about your email, for working with your email. And then I'm going to go through some concrete strategies that you can experiment, apply to how you use your email so that you can turn it into a more easeful and joyful experience. And I know the joyful email might seem. Like a stretch. But I like, I just want to offer that if we. Work. If we want to, if we think about going in that direction, then we're going to make changes that take us in that direction. You know, email might never be a place that your ex like, just absolutely love getting into, but you never know. Maybe it's possible. Why not see what we can do to get there? And I think that email is a really great place to start. When you are trying to transform the experience of your business. On a wider level. So if you're feeling burned out, if you're feeling overwhelmed, you've got lots of work and moving parts and you know, sometimes you just don't have the time or the bandwidth to even think about it. Starting with one place, like, like email can help you not only realize the potential and like some ease quickly, but also get you into this. Like thinking of like, Hey, I can create systems where I feel better. That systems that are built around the way that I want to do business, the way I want to show up in the world, the way that is best for my nervous system and my energetic needs. And. And that is really more sustainable in the long haul because your like your time and your attention, your focus is a precious resource. So we want to build systems that. Really help you to maximize it and feel good. So if you're in need of the podcast welcome I am Heidi. I am a life coach and I also am a business strategist. I actually am right now. This is my first week of a director of operations certification, which I am super thrilled about. That's going to. Really help me work on the strategy level with entrepreneurs and help them create easeful businesses. I bring in a lot of my background is in yoga and Ayurveda and then life coaching and nervous system works. So I really like to approach coaching and approach business from a human centered perspective that our work is an extension of who we are. Not some outside framework that we have to force ourselves into. And especially when you are a solo preneur or you're like, you're doing your own thing, you have the ability to really create it in a way that works for you. And when a lot of us do this, we start to change our system. We change the culture of work. Let's do it differently. Let's create work differently. And if you're here listening to this episode, Looking for help. And you want more beyond this? I do have a program right now called systems for ease that is a strategic mapping of your business, of what you need for your systems, your processes, you get super clear on how you want to feel and what you want your business to look like. You can find out more in the show notes and on my website. Site. All right. So email. Email is a giant junk drawer, right? It's like a big pile of stuff. It's like, it just gets thrown in there right from. Every possible direction. It's a catchall often for receipts, for payments, for notes for quick highs, for important works, work stuff for project communication, for like anything it's like, it all comes through your email often. And this makes it overwhelming. This turns it into a huge mess. Like when you wake up in the morning and you go to like, turn your email on, and there's 200 messages from all people all over the planet about all kinds of things that. How. How else do you think your brain is going to react, but overwhelmed. And then you go into your stress response and you either try to get through everything as POS. As fast as possible or you close it and move on to something else. And it just becomes a stressful relationship. I know for me, For years, I hated email. I was scared of it. I would think about my email and I would go into a stress response. I would feel anxious. This led me to often like over check my emails, especially like in the mornings or on vacation. Quote unquote, vacation. And it was just a horrible relationship. Not a very healthy one. Toxic might be the word. And the thing is, is that like when you are engaging with email in, in that way, in an unstructured way, and then responding to what comes at you through the email. You are. Sensually giving your time management over to whoever is communicating with you in your email. And it can be really hard in that, in. Mental environment to prioritize and organize your time. In the best possible way for you. You know, the sheer amount and stimulation. Like all of these different thoughts and requests coming at you. It is, it can be a lot to process for the brain in Irita. It can, what. We say it increases your Vata aggravation. Which is associated with anxiety and overwhelm. And when you are in that state, this ungrounded state, then you tend to be more scattered. You tend to be more disjointed in your thinking and your decision-making. And all of this is essentially kind of. Depletes your, your power and your decision making abilities, which as a business owner. You want to do everything possible to stay in your power, to stay in your like zone of, of being centered. And a few were insight and like the most. Powerful version of yourself without needing to be perfect. Of course. So often email is a place where our less balanced sides will play out. It's where we will see people pleasing happen. That's why we have to respond to people right away. Or you will see a lack of boundaries where. Especially if, if you're checking email all day long, there's probably some boundary work that would be very beneficial. And it will reveal our tendency to, to, to get overwhelmed into. To live life reactively versus proactively coming from a place of choosing and deciding based on our. What is best for us, whether that's time, priorities, values. X Y Z. Okay. So what do we do with this big, messy drawer? The this like virtual drawer in our head that is just overflowing with, with stimulation and stuff. So thinking first about mindset. And inviting yourself to have a vision. For how you want your relationship with email to, to be. Like, what would you love that experience to be? And we can. Play and have fun and be a little bit like, okay, maybe this app, like this is like shooting for the moon, but like, what if you loved opening your email? What if you love opening it up and seeing. Let's say 10 messages. And then for some of you that might be unheard of. And every one of them in there is meaningful and important to you. You, you, you have time specifically set aside. To check your email and to respond, you respond and then you close it and you feel. Focused and ready for the next thing. Wouldn't that be amazing. So. One thing that. I really recommend, especially if you are open to to ritual. Is that you do make opening your email, a ritual. And that might be simply as as simple as pausing and taking three deep breaths. Before you. Click on your email icon and start reading. Because that right there will interrupt your automatic. Habits and stressful. Whatever stressful pattern you're in right there. Help to ground you. You can also pull in, like, if you have a crystal or something else a mantra or do a little bit of movement. Then before your email, you, you can bring in a bit of the sacredness. Of like what it really means this CA the communication and why you're staying connected. You're, you're fulfilling your life purpose, your, you know, whatever it is. It's like, bring that into the moment, this higher intention behind. The work that you're doing. Behind the way that you are showing up and interacting with other human beings. So. Have a vision consider having a ritual. And. Have boundaries. Have boundaries. Email. I love the idea of having office hours for email. So there's lots of different ways that you can do this. But having boundaries, first of all, it starts with you. Being okay with other people. With, with telling other people that you're not available or letting other people not get a response from you. Now, if you have course work in a field where you are like, emergencies are a part of your job. Then you probably already have systems that can deal with that pretty well. But emergencies should not be happening in your email. There should be another line of communication for emergencies. So. With you. Decide your time, especially if you're self-employed so deciding on your boundaries is like you get to, I get to schedule my time. I get to decide to check my email when it is best for me. And it is best for me to not check it at all on Mondays. Or Fridays, maybe it is best for me to check it at noon. And then at the end of the day, And this becoming more common. I see this more often where people are having clear boundaries. And communicating them. So like I had a coach who, anytime you sent her an email, she had an auto reply. That saying that. You know, thank you for email. Someone will get back to you in. Probably about two days. So. Right off the bat. Clear expectations. As far as when I would hear back from her, I love it. You know, I can wait, it's fine. If there's an emergency, then I will take action to, to get that emergency address. But just everyday, everyday email is not an emergency. Another way to do this is to have, have set admin focus time. In your weekly flow or however you, you plan your schedule where maybe half of that is to address emails and you go through real quick, you open your email, you, you know, delete what you can and then prioritize your emails and then do what you can within that half an hour. And then. It's done. The key thing here is that you do not let, what is in your email? Decide what you're doing that day. If your work functions that you don't have a separate software for work related project related communication. And you're receiving that in your email. When you wake up in the morning, then what you can do is set time, say, okay, I'm going to eight 30 to nine. I'm checking my email from nine to 11. That's a time blocked off specifically to respond to email inquiries. To whatever comes up in the email. Or you could do it in the afternoon, right? And then you have the time in the afternoon where that is strict focus time for you to work on the projects. Having focused time blocks of time reduces overwhelm. Incredibly. Also know yourself. No, your tendencies. If you tend to be quite reactive with your emails, the know that ahead of time that, Hey, I'm going to open my emails and I'm going to want to just respond to them and get them done and out of my head. So knowing that, how can I. Choose what time I access my email and plan time after that to address it. When is the best place to put this into my schedule? If you know that you tend to get overwhelmed. Then create a rhythm where you look at your email for a certain amount of time, and then you take a break and go for a walk. Right. Do you do something very specifically to calm your overwhelm before you transition into the next activity? So that you're not taking that stress with you and it is. Kind of leading you through the rest of your day. Okay. So those are some strategies. And now I want to talk about like the specific things that you can do, configurations or systems without getting too specific. So, if you think about your emails as it's a junk drawer, it's got everything in there. Ideally in a business. Your email is not your center of communication. You have you know, for your team, you have something like slack for projects and tasks. You have a project management software. For customer support, you have a customer support ticket system. So that, so that email is, is a place that you only go to for the things that don't fit into those other systems. And without going too much into like what that configuration can look like. That is where you want to get to. As you grow so that you can be very focused, you know, that like, The junk drawer. That's it's a little bit of everything. The project management software is just project work. The the, the the support ticket system that is just going to be support work, and you can schedule that time. You can do blocks of time and you won't get distracted by, you know, what your grandma just sent you the silly cat picture. When you're in your support system, because it's just not in there anymore. More right. But if you're not quite at that level, then organizing your email is the place to start. And you can do that first by creating some. Rough categories. So that might be newsletters, receipts stuff from your family. Work related. Emails. Specific projects. And then you can utilize the tools within your email to organize it automatically. So that ideally, when you look at your inbox, you're only seeing the various. Things, what you have chosen to see in there. The, for example, maybe all of your newsletters, do you have a filter so that they go into a certain folder? All of the communications about project. ABC goes into a certain folder. All of your you know, other comms, they go somewhere else so that you first, you get into your email and you might see your inbox, but then you have to decide. To go look at your newsletter folder, then you have to decide to go look at your. Your work project folder. It's just, this separation puts you back into the driver's seat. And most every email software or free software out there has the ability to create folders or labels. So. Okay. Putting this into practice. As you consider how to create a joyful email experience. I offer you these few questions. So what would the impact. Of easeful joyful email B. On me. On how I feel in my business. How I show up. How would that impact the people that I work with? And then next question is. What do I want to choose to believe? About creating my email experience. Is it that you, you have the ability to create it. You have the ability to improve it. That your email is your domain. It's like your room. It's your, your studio. And you can create that experience. And then what are one or two strategies that you can implement right away? Is that. Using filters to automatically organize. Your emails from your boss. Is it creating a ritual before you open your emails? Who always take three deep breaths. What is the strategy that you can implement right away? And then what is the long-term goal? What is the big picture? How can you see email as where do you see your email serving in your business? In a year in five years from now. This will inform any systems that you want to build any Processes and any assistance that you want to pull in to help you do that? All right. That's what I got for you today. If you are interested in getting some help to build those big picture, vision and systems I'm here, you can check out my website, Heidi jandal.com forward slash ease to learn more about systems for ease. So, thank you so much for joining and take care of friends. I'll see you next week.