Few people would disagree that email makes our lives easier. But misusing email can cause problems. Answering all those emails and processing all that information can overload the brain, causing stress. That is the finding of the company, Future Work Centre.
The London-based business carries out psychological research on workplace life. Richard MacKinnon was the lead writer of a report on messaging habits. He said email can be a valuable, time-saving communication tool. But he said it can also be a source of stress and even anger for many people.
He said stress does not come from the number of emails received. The problems are linked, instead, to how people deal with email. The study found two very stressful email behaviors. One is to leave email on all day -- and never sign off. The other is to read and answer emails early in the morning and late at night.
Not all jobs are equal in connection to email stress. The jobs with the most email stress are: marketing, public relations, media and information technology.
There are ways to cut down on email stress. Plan your use of email. Do not immediately react to email alerts. Use an automatic "Out of Office" reply more often. Use the telephone more to communicate. Even better, talk to people face-to-face when you can. Restrict use of the "reply all" tool on email.
Email is here to stay. So, it is important that people control their email instead of it controlling them.