Why you should NOT check email first thing in the morning (part 2 of 7):

Starting with email makes you REACTIVE instead of PROACTIVE

Managing email effectively begins with having the ‘bigger picture’ of your overall workload and productivity in mind. By starting your day looking at your calendar, diary or to-do list, instead of your in-box, you’ll start the day with a better perspective of your existing commitments and priorities for the day. Many of these are unfinished actions resulting from emails you received yesterday or even earlier!

The in-box need only be accessed at a time of your choosing, when you’ve set aside a block of time to properly read and process each message. In fact, email is so important these days that we must address it with a clear, focused mind rather than in the distracted manner we so often give it when it arrives as an interruption.

Improving your productivity involves changing from an in-box-based, interruption-driven, reactive style of work to something that is calendar or diary-based, plan-driven and proactive. Aim to work on the things that are important to you (regardless of their urgency) rather than simply start the day with the urgent (but often less important) items in your inbox.