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求学网 >> English >> 英语口语

别让邮件毁了一天:高效管理电邮的秘密

There are tons of books about time-management, but increasingly I hear the topic discussed in terms of energy management. Our minds, the thinking goes, only have so much capacity for any one type of activity, so we have to build that limitation into our daily routines if we want to work effectively. Our email inbox may seem to be our highest priority, but “inbox zero” can lead to “energy zero” if you are not careful.
关于时间管理的书籍已经出了不计其数,但我越来越经常听到大家在讨论的一个话题是“精力管理”。我们的头脑,也就是思维,对任何一类行为都有着很大的容纳能力,因此如果我们想要高效工作的话,我们不得不在我们的日常工作中做出限定。我们的电子邮件收件箱看起来可能是我们的最高优先事务,但如果你不加小心的话,“收件箱有零封未读邮件”可能会导致“零活力”。
I just finished reading a new book by 99U called Manage Your Day-to-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus & Sharpen Your Creative Mind. The recurring advice across many of the 20 experts who contributed essays to the book was simple: don’t start the day by dealing with your email. Instead, the experts overwhelmingly suggest that you start with your hardest work of the day and defer the distractions of email for later.
我刚刚读完一本由99U出版的新书,名为《管理你的每一天:订立日常规划,找到你的关注点并锻炼你的创造性思维》。为这本书撰写了文章的20位专家中,很多人反复提及的建议非常简单:不要将处理邮件作为一天的开始,相反,这些专家强烈建议你从一天中最艰苦的工作着手,并推迟处理邮件的时间。
In some work environments this may seem impractical, or even impossible, but the principle can be applied to any situation. In some cases, the answer may be to get to work early in order to carve out some sustained thinking time at the start of the day. For others it is just a matter of retraining yourself to not assume that the priorities of your inbox match up with your own personal goals and responsibilities.
在一些工作环境中,这可能不太实际,或甚至不可能实施,但它的原理可能适用于任何情况。在有些情况中,解决办法可能是早早开始工作,以便在一天开始的时候腾出固定的时间用于思考。对其他人来说,这只是重新训练你不要将回复邮件的优先级与你自己的个人目标和责任相提并论。
We start with email is not only because we need to respond to others, some of them clients or superiors, in a timely manner, but also that re-acting is easier than pro-acting. Generally whatever is most important to do is difficult and requires skills that one uniquely possess. That is why it is your work. As much as we may revel in our individuality, expressing that individuality—especially in corporate situations—can make us feel vulnerable and exposed.
我们喜欢从邮件开始并不只是因为我们需要及时回复他人,其中有些人是客户或上级,还因为对某事进行反应比主动发起某事要容易。一般来说最重要的事情是比较难办的,需要用到一个人独具的技巧,这就是为什么要你来做这个工作的原因。正如我们可能会陶醉于我们的自我一样,表达自我——尤其是在企业的环境中——可能会让我们感到容易招致他人的责难,并暴露自己的弱点。
A report from McKinsey last year estimated that the average knowledge worker spent 28% of their workday on email. Tech consultant Linda Stone has coined the term “email apnea” (and the more general “screen apnea”) to describe the curious behavior that most of us display when reading email and other screen related tasks: we actually hold our breath. And like sleep apnea which is responsible for a host of maladies, email and screen apnea sap our energy and increase our body’s tension.
去年麦肯锡的一份报告估计,普通的知识工作者每个工作日有28%的时间花在处理电子邮件上。技术顾问琳达·斯通发明了“电邮呼吸暂停”(以及更流行的“屏幕呼吸暂停”)这个词,以形容我们大多数人在阅读电子邮件和完成其他与屏幕有关的任务时的古怪行为:我们实际上屏住了呼吸。跟导致一系列疾病的睡眠呼吸暂停一样,电邮和屏幕呼吸暂停吞蚀了我们的精力,提高了我们身体的紧张程度。
So beyond the suggestion to not let others shape your own priorities, starting your day with email can literally have a detrimental effect on the rest of your day. Best-selling author and founder of The Energy Project, Tony Schwartz, argues that we have to build renewal of our energy into our work day. Scott Belsky, co-founder on Behance and now VP of Community at Adobe, recommends not reaching for your smartphone in the interstices between meetings, but rather to allow for some unstructured time for your mind to both recharge and also absorb what just happened.
因此,除了不要让其他人设定你自己的优先级外,你的一天从回复邮件开始实际上会对你这一天剩下的时间造成不利影响。畅销书作者、The Energy Project公司的创始人托尼·施瓦茨认为,我们需要在我们每天的工作中重新恢复我们的活力。Behance公司联合创始人、现Adobe公司的社区副总裁斯科特·贝尔斯基就建议,在会议间隙不要掏手机,而是留出一段空闲时间,让你的大脑重新充电,并好好消化刚刚发生的情况。
Taken as a whole, the suggestions in Manage Your Day-to-Day urge us to take responsibility for our own time and energy by not letting email or other forms of reactivity blunt our focus. It is, of course, important to be responsive to other people, but as James Victore writes, “we are losing the distinction between urgent and important—now everything gets heaped in the urgent pile.” As hard as it may seem to buck the trend and not answer every message immediately, your assertion of priorities will make it easier for your co-workers to assert theirs.
总体来说,《管理你的每一天》这本书中的建议敦促我们为我们自己的时间和精力负责,不要让邮件或其他形式的反应型工作消磨掉我们的关注点。当然,对其他人做出快速回复是很重要的,但正如詹姆斯·维克托写的:“我们正在模糊紧急和重要之间的差别——现在每件事都堆在紧急处理事项列表上。”对抗这一趋势并且不去立刻回复每条信息可能很难做到,但你对优先级的设定会让你的同事比较容易设定他们的优先级。
The more people in an organization who take this approach, I think, the less superfluous emails will get sent. If you don’t assume an immediate response you will often just figure it out yourself. Voilà, one less email exchange! Taming email is a group endeavor, but it starts with you.
我认为,一个组织中采取这种策略的人越多,发过来的不必要的邮件就会越少。如果你不即刻进行回复,你自己就能弄清楚情况会怎样。瞧,少发来一封邮件!驯服电子邮件需要一组人做出努力,但这个任务从你开始!
(实习编辑:于晓伟)

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