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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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      Last Updated on March 25, 2020

      How to Type Faster: 12 Typing Tips and Techniques

      How to Type Faster: 12 Typing Tips and Techniques

      Typing is a lot of fun, especially if you’re the type of person who loves to write. Whenever an idea comes to your head or you just want to communicate something, the feeling of scribbling things down in a computer is awesome.

      Do you know that being able to type faster makes you more productive? In fact, it’ll save you 21 days every year just by typing faster!

      Many people look up to master typists and wish that to handle a keyboard like they do. The truth is that none of them started that way, and they had to learn.

      In this piece, you’ll learn how to type faster with some useful tips and techniques:

      1. Work on Your Workspace and Typing Area

      A lot of people believe that fast and correct typing will start when you can master the keyboard. But the truth is, you will need to begin with getting a workspace that is clean, properly ventilated, and comfortable. Also, for optimal typing, you will need to get a table and not out your laptop or computer on your lap.

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      If you will be working for an extended period, make sure that you’re comfortable.

      2. Fix Your Posture

      If you want to type well, the correct posture will be seated, straight backed, and with your feet planted a little apart, flat on the ground. You wrists should also be positioned in such a way that your fingers can cover the keyboard. Tilt your head a bit as you can look at the screen properly as well.

      Adjust your office chair so you’ll be able to easily play with the seat and get a proper posture.

      3. Hold Your Posture

      It is also very important that you keep this position as you type. Ensure that your posture is good, and this way, you will be able to avoid getting aches on your wrists. These aches have a way of slowing you down and keeping you out of rhythm.

      Keep your back and shoulders from hunching, and while relaxation should be your key goal as you work on, also be sure to stay upright.

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      4. Familiarize Yourself with the Keyboard

      The keyboard is your tool here, so you will need to get to know it. Fortunately for you, most keyboards that you see will make use of the same layout; the QWERTY layout. It is called that because of the letters that make the top left corner. You’ll also find that a lot of keyboards have keys around these main ones that do several tings.

      Here’s a nice video to help you familiarize yourself with the keyboard:

      So, work on memorizing the positions of the letter keys, as well as some of the most used punctuation marks. You will need to understand where they are without looking at the keyboard. This is the only way you can learn to type fast.

      5. Close Your Eyes and Say the Keys out Loud as You Press Them

      Another great way to get to know the positions of these letters is to look away from them and directly at the screen. Then, pronounce the keys as you press them and see if you’re correct. This step will go a long way in helping you to memorize the keys, and it can easily help you

      6. Start Slowly with Touch-Typing

      Improving your speed as you type is a matter of developing your skill over time. However, the quickest way to master typing will be touch typing. If this is your first time with touch typing, then you might spend a lot of time on this step. However, once you can type without looking at the keys, your speed will increase.

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      Now, this typing method might feel a bit alien, but you’ll improve with time.

      7. Stick with It and Don’t Look at Your Hands

      The whole essence of this step is to keep you from looking at your keyboard as you type, so that your fingers are made to learn how the keys work.

      Again, you might find that your speed reduces when you begin, but just stick to it. Touch typing will help you to reach higher speeds and master it.

      8. Practice, Practice, Practice

      Mastering the touch typing technique will prove to be a bit finicky, but once your posture is up and you get your fingers where they should be, you can only improve by practicing.

      Spare some time on a daily basis to practice and master both accuracy and speed. With continuous practice, you will also notice that you make fewer errors with time.

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      9. Check out Some Online Games

      There are also some websites that can help you with your practicing. They score you and record your words per minute, so you can try improving your record and competing with others as well. Here’re some of the nice sites:

      10. Dictation Practice

      If you don’t know what you can type, another alternative to getting good practice is to listen to something and try to type as you hear the words. There is no limit to the kind of things you can type, and you can even make the practice process more fun. So, get an e-book, an online lecture, or listen to a talk show and type. You could watch a TV show as well.

      11. Monitor Your Progress

      Ensure that you keep track of the progress you make as you go on. But it is important that you don’t get obsessed with how many words you are able to type in a minute. Rather, ensure that you stay comfortable while you type. With time, your words per minute will increase, and you’ll be able to clock up some high numbers.

      12. Get Some Formal Training If You Want

      There are actually a lot of specially designed courses and programs that will boost your typing ability. If you’re willing to improve your skill, get any of these and see how well they work for you:

      Don’t just finish reading this article and expect that you’ll type faster. You do need to work on your skills. It takes time to type fast but, practice makes perfect!

      More Tips About Typing Faster

      Featured photo credit: Cytonn Photography via unsplash.com

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