Most of us think of cleaning our inbox as a necessary chore (albeit one we let slide from time to time), but it can also be great exercise for our decision-making skills. After all, it's not the ability to make snap decisions that really defines a good decision-maker, it's how well they can handle what happens after they've made the decision that matters.
Photo by Gideon Tsang.
Over at Unclutterer, writer Erin points out that even those of us who are good at managing our inboxes can find themselves quickly overcome by the rising tide of email -- and all it takes is one message that we didn't know how to answer or what to file to make our system fall apart. If that sounds familiar, don't throw up your hands; decision-making is a skill that requires practice, just like any other skill, and a great way to make sure you're honing that skill is to keep your inbox neat and tidy. You can take time to do it during your weekly review or do it in small bits every day.
The full article walks you through the process of making that decision, including acknowledging you have to make the decision, identifying the actions you can take and their possible consequences, and finally just making the call. So take a look if you've been known to succumb to analysis paralysis when staring at an email you'd rather not deal with. The better you get at managing your inbox, the more those decision-making skills will flow into the rest of your life.
What do you think? Worthwhile practice, or a specious analogy at best? Let us know in the comments.