Inbox Zero for LSAT

You have a lot more going on than just the LSAT. You have school, you have a job, or you have both. You have family and friends, and you don't want to be a douche by totally neglecting them. Adding a 20-hour per week LSAT regimen to your existing commitments is challenging at least, and can easily seem overwhelming. There just aren't enough hours in the day. I can't make the day longer, but I do have one tip that will make your day seem more manageable. A picture is worth a thousand words:

 

That's my actual inbox, on a Wednesday morning, as I write this post. It's empty, which is how I keep it. That might seem like an effect of productivity, but it's actually the primary cause. Here's how I do it:

1)  When I check my email, I deal with everything in the inbox immediately. Top to bottom... a full housecleaning. That doesn't mean I act on everything right away, it just means I don't leave anything to fester in the inbox. If a student emails me and I can reply in a few minutes or less, I will do so right then and there. If it's something that requires a longer effort, I'll put it on my calendar or to-do list for future action. If it's a waste of my time, I will simply delete it.

2)  I can't imagine doing this without Gmail. Gmail allows me to instantly archive messages, so I don't have to waste time saving and sorting and categorizing. When in doubt, I just hit the "archive" button. It disappears from my inbox, but I'll always be able to find it if it turns out to be important.

It's really as simple as that. I've been doing this for a couple years now, and it's had an amazing impact on my productivity while significantly reducing my stress. No more scanning through the inbox trying to figure out what to do next. No more losing messages. No more procrastinating by leaving an important message in the inbox for a week and feeling guilty every time I catch a glimpse of it. My students and readers are shocked at how quickly I respond to their questions. Why wouldn't I? They are my number one priority, and Inbox Zero has cleared their path to me.

I implore you to give it a shot, just for a few days. You'll be shocked at how much you get done, and how much less stress you feel. This adds up to more time for LSAT studying, and more energy to do it with.

For lots more on Inbox Zero, go here. (Inbox Zero was not, of course, my own invention. Big thanks to Merlin Mann.)