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Two Tips for Gmail Users to Manage Email More Efficiently

Two Tips for Gmail Users to Manage Email More Efficiently

A lot has been written on how batch processing is the most efficient way to manage email. If you’re unfamiliar with the practice within this context, it more or less advocates only checking and processing your email a few times a day. By limiting task-switching, you’re able to achieve better focus and get more done.

Even though we may be cognizant of this, only checking and processing your email a few times a day is not easy to do for a whole slew of reasons: The best way to overcome any challenge is to create an environment where it’s easy to succeed. For managing your email efficiently, creating an environment that reduces your temptation to frequently check email encourages practicing batch processing.

Here are two simple ways that Gmail users can design an environment that’s more conducive to batch processing and subsequently manage email more efficiently:

1. Bookmark Ancillary Services

For many of us, Gmail is more than just a mail client; it’s where we chat with co-workers, store important documents,  and access our calendars. It’s literally the central hub for productivity.

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In its current state, the gateway to most of these ancillary Google services is on the top pane of your inbox, so the process for retrieving your documents requires first heading to your inbox. If there are new messages dangling in front of you every time you want to open a document, resisting the temptation to check your email can be very difficult.

A simple trick to circumvent this is to bookmark each ancillary service so that you can access it without checking your email. Google Docs, Calendar, and Reader are great ones to begin with, but you can even go as far as bookmarking the Compose function so that new messages can be initiated without entering your inbox.

 

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BatchProcessing

     

    Most browsers enable you to append bookmarks on the toolbar, which essentially replicates the top pane access available in the Gmail client. If you access a particular document frequently, you can even save a step by adding a direct bookmark to that doc in your browser.

    2. Pause Your Inbox

    Again, batch processing is easier to execute when you limit the temptation of checking your email frequently. Inbox pause is an amazing free plugin from Baydin that does exactly that.

    In short, Inbox Pause allows you to control when messages appear, so “pausing” your inbox prevents new messages from showing up until you dictate that you’re ready for them to appear. From the moment you click pause, you could receive 100 emails, but they’ll be kept in purgatory until you “un-pause” your inbox via a simple button.

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    Inbox Pause

       

      Say your goal is to process email 3 times a day (i.e. 10 am, 2 pm and 6 pm). By pausing your inbox after processing at the designated time slots, you can maintain a clean inbox until the next time you’re ready to check it. Not only does this make batch processing easier, but the mere fact that no new messages await diminishes the temptation to constantly check your email. After all, there’s nothing new in your inbox across any device until you click un-pause.

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      If you’re truly making an effort to commit to batch processing, inbox pause allows you to shift the paradigm of email—without it, you’re at the mercy of other people. And though you still have to refrain from continually un-pausing your inbox for it be effective, the fact that you need to opt-in against your intentions through one more additional action (clicking un-pause), serves as another line of defense in the struggle to maintain discipline.

      These two practices are both excellent ways to create an enviroment that promotes effective batch processing.

       

      What practices do you use to manage email efficiently?

       

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      Published on January 18, 2019

      Best 5 Language Learning Apps to Easily Master a New Language

      Best 5 Language Learning Apps to Easily Master a New Language

      Learning a new language is no easy feat. While a language instructor is irreplaceable, language learning apps have come to revolutionize a lot of things and it has made language learning much easier. Compared to language learning websites, apps offer a more interactive experience to learn a new language.

      The following language learning apps are the top recommended apps for your language learning needs:

      1. Duolingo

        Duolingo is a very successful app that merged gamification and language learning. According to Expanded Ramblings, the app now counts with 300 million users.

        Duolingo offers a unique concept, an easy-to-use app and is a great app to accompany your language acquisition journey. The courses are created by native speakers, so this is not data or algorithm-based.

        The app is free and has the upgrade options with Duolingo Plus for $9.99, which are add free lessons. The mobile app offers 25 languages and is popular for English-speaking learners learning other languages.

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        Download the app

        2. HelloTalk

          HelloTalk aims to facilitate speaking practice and eliminate the stresses of a real-time and life conversation. The app allows users to connect to native speakers and has a WhatsApp like chat that imitates its interface.

          There is a perk to this app. The same native speakers available also want to make an even exchange and learn your target language, so engagement is the name of the game.

          What’s more, the app has integrated translation function that bypasses the difficulties of sending a message with a missing word and instead fills in the gap.

          Download the app

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          3. Mindsnacks

            Remember that Duolingo has integrated gamification in language learning? Well, Mindsnacks takes the concept to another level. There is an extensive list of languages available within the app comes with eight to nine games designed to learn grammar, vocabulary listening.

            You will also be able to visualize your progress since the app integrates monitoring capabilities. The layout and interface is nothing short of enjoyable, cheerful and charming.

            Download the app

            4. Busuu

              Bussu is a social language learning app. It is available on the web, Android, and iOS. It currently supports 12 languages and is free.

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              The functionality allows users to learn words, simple dialogues and questions related to the conversations. In addition, the dialogues are recorded by native speakers, which brings you close to the language learning experience.

              When you upgrade, you unlock important features including course materials. The subscription is $17 a month.

              Download the app

              5. Babbel

                Babbel is a subscription-based service founded in 2008. According to LinguaLift, it is a paid cousing of Duolingo. The free version comes with 40 classes, and does not require you to invest any money.

                Each of the classes starts with with a sequential teaching of vocabulary with the help of pictures. The courses are tailor made and adapted to the students’ level, allowing the learning to be adjusted accordingly.

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                If you started learning a language and stopped, Babbel will help you pick up where you started.

                Download the app

                Takeaways

                All the apps recommended are tailored for different needs, whether you’re beginning to learn a language or trying to pick back up one. All of them are designed by real-life native speakers and so provide you with a more concrete learning experience.

                Since these apps are designed to adapt to different kinds of learning styles, do check out which one is the most suitable for you.

                Featured photo credit: Yura Fresh via unsplash.com

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