On Saturday I arrived back home after being gone and mostly disconnected for roughly two weeks. I was curious to see how much stuff piled up, waiting for my attention, while I was hanging out with great people, sleeping in a tent, teaching, learning, flying, and otherwise avoiding the Internet.
I fired up Thunderbird to find that there were approximately 2,100 messages waiting for me in my work account. 80% of them were spam and removed automatically. Another 10% were clearly not things I needed to read, so I filed them into the "archive" folder without opening them. Another 3-5% were spam that I had to manually mark as spam.
But that still left something like 125 messages in my inbox that demand some sort of attention from me: read, process, respond, put on calendar, etc.
I marked all but two folders in FeedDemon as "read" immediately. I strongly suspect that anything truly important that took place in my world during those two weeks will make itself apparent in other ways. If not, it probably wasn't important. I should probably cut my feed subscriptions in half. Again.
I tried to keep up with my personal email every few evenings while I was out, but there are probably still 40 or so messages with stars next to them in my Gmail account.
In other words, my "welcome back" workload is now back to a semi-reasonable level.
It was quite refreshing to not spend 8-12 hours a day in front of a computer, sending email to people who work a minute's walk from me, dealing with weekly meetings in which little is actually accomplished, getting caught up in the "news" of the day, and keeping half a dozen plates spinning.
Something about all that needs to change. I'm not quite sure what, but I've got a few ideas worth thinking about more.
I should have done this a year ago, but I'm also glad to be back at home. And my cats are glad to have me here too.
Did I miss anything important? Probably not. But let me know if I did.
Posted by jzawodn at May 29, 2006 07:31 AM