A new study suggests just how much people value their personal email. They're checking it all the time. First thing in the morning? Sure. When you get to work? Absolutely. Lunch time? Time to check your email. After lunch? Just to make sure nothing important came in. On vacation? Absolutely. In fact, make sure you check your personal email before your work email. This probably isn't that surprising. While the article suggests this is an "addiction" or "obsessive compulsive" behavior, that's not necessarily the case (though, perhaps I'm rationalizing...). The simple fact is that email is useful, and letting it pile up can be a problem. However, checking it regularly can be very helpful. As for doing it at work -- it basically is the functional equivalent of a coffee break. It lets you take a quick mental break from work -- which is often useful in staying more productive. Also, unlike the coffee break, a personal email break lets people be productive in their personal lives, which often carries over into their work lives. They don't need to worry about things or rush out of the office to take care of personal stuff, if a quick email during the day can take care of things.
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