Do you check emails in the middle of the night or while at dinner with family or friends? Have you checked your messages while on vacation?
If so, you’re not alone.
A new Working Simply survey finds that 84.5 million American employees say they’re constantly checking work emails outside of the office. The practice, they say, is preventing them from fully engaging in their private lives, marring time with family, friends and their community.
“If we’re buried in our smartphone or Blackberry, how engaged are we really in our personal or professional life?” says Carson Tate, managing partner for Working Simply. “Such a fractured attention doesn’t lead to quality work or cutting-edge thinking.”
Working Simply often advises companies like Coca-Cola and their employees how to better structure work and private time so that the balance leads to more engaged work, greater innovative thinking and higher productivity.
“The conversation really begins with ourselves,” Tate says. “What are our personal boundaries? We need to define them because given the latitude, others will define those boundaries for us.”
Finally, Tate advises the greatest tool may be the “off” button. For example, determine that your phone and email will be turned off at 8 p.m.. Turn off the pinging email alerts at work so “that you’re not constantly interrupted and derailed from what you’re doing,” she says.
In other words, the secret to finding engagement and happiness in your work and professional life may begin by you setting your own pace.
What email rules have you established to help you be more productive and balanced?