In a previous column, I suggested that everyone take about five minutes at the end of the day to clear out their e-mail inboxes. Eliminating old messages takes care of the mental baggage that goes with them. Think about it: By leaving the message within view you constantly tell yourself, “Better keep that, because I’ll need it someday.” That thought wears on you over time, consuming valuable energy and concentration. If you don’t refer to a message within a few weeks, you can do without it for the foreseeable future.
Do yourself a favor and clean out your inbox – NOW. And make a point to go through that mess at least once a day.
This same concept applies to other clutter in your life. Look around your office. How many magazines, newspaper clippings, documents and other stuff are lying around? I’ll bet you feel the same way about each piece: “I’ll use it someday.”
Commit to taking action on that pile of refuse at the end of today. Doesn’t matter whether you work 1st, 2nd, or 3rd shift, your workday ends sometime. Use 15 or 20 minutes at the end of your day to tackle the pile. As with your e-mails, think ASD:
Act on it, Save it someplace – it must be genuinely valuable – or Dump it. No ifs, ands, or buts.
You must eliminate physical clutter so your mind can relieve itself of mental clutter and baggage. Otherwise, you’ll always be carrying it around inside of you. That’s not good.
This won’t be easy. Trust me: I’m forcing myself to do the same. But it’s a tremendous relief to work in a cleaner and more organized office. Try it and enjoy the results yourself.
If you found value in this post, could you do me a favor and share it with others? You may use any of the links below. Feel free to comment, as well. To contact me, send an email.