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Monday
Jan132014

Productivity tip: Use AwayFind to stop checking email so often

I mentioned earlier that I'd be sharing any tips and tools I've been using to help me focus. One of the biggest discoveries I made last year is a service called AwayFind.

I used to check email obsessively throughout the day. At first it was because I didn't want to miss anything important that came in, but then I realized that even if I wasn't expecting anything super-urgent, I'd STILL regularly (as in at least a few times an hour, sometimes more often) check my email, no matter what else I was doing.

It was only after I started timing myself, seeing how long I could work before I checked email, that I had to admit I had a real problem. The action of frequent email-checking was so automatic that it happened without conscious effort, making it impossible for me to sustain focus for more than a very short time. Gah.

The brilliance of Awayfind: You can set up a list of email addresses and get alerts when mail arrives from any of them. You can even customize these alerts, to avoid getting alerted for groupmails, etc. I added agent's address, for example, as well as other important work-related contacts.

There are different pricing plans, but you can try out the Personal and Pro for 30 days for free. I ended up opting for the Pro account.

End result? I no longer feel compelled to check email so often, giving me more distraction-free time to focus.

You can check out Awayfind yourself: http://www.awayfind.com

(and no, I'm not getting any affiliate fee for this recommendation)

Do you have another productivity tool to recommend? Feel free to post below!

 

Reader Comments (2)

I use it, too, and I think it's an amazing tool -- both when I'm writing or when I'm trying to enjoy some time off with my family.

January 14, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterAnn Douglas

Nice post!
For me, my productivity tool is a time tracking software called Time Doctor. It helps me boost my productivity by making me focus on work and avoid distractions. I have been using it for almost 3 years now and it's been nothing but a huge help especially because I work from home. It's difficult to keep myself motivated to do the job you are paid to do if there are so many distractions around.

January 19, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterEina

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