Please Don't Email Me

Cynthia Dermody

iphone email screen
Flickr photo by katielips
I recently got an iPhone (yes, I'm another one of those annoying people who'd give up a limb before I'd surrender that phone, but only my left one so I could still type) and now I am constantly checking my email.

I do it while dumping rice into a pot, starting up the car, waiting for my son to take his turn at Candy Land, where I've secretly planted a "blue" card on top of the pile so he can move to the gingerbread house and this endless game will finally be over and it will be time to GO TO BED, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, thank you, Lord, for easily distracted children.

I know all this being constantly connected is a bad thing. All the experts say so, including one recent paper that shows a link between stress and work-related emails at home during off-hours.

But I'm going to have to disagree here. I feel better, actually less stressed when I check my work email every waking moment. It's the best feeling when I'm able to solve a problem, complete a task, or set up an appointment the day before. It makes me feel like I have a jump on the next day, and that helps me breath easier and enjoy the here and now more.

Work is work. You do what you have to do and move on.

Now, about all that personal email. That's what they should do the stress study on.

HR writes that I need to fire someone tomorrow? Well, that sucks, but no problem. My supervisor wants me to put a 21 page Power Point presentation together by tomorrow's meeting? Make a bunch of pretty pictures and stay up late. Piece of cake.


Rather, it's the personal, life juggling crap that sends me round the bend on a daily basis:

From Nick McPhee: A reminder that 1st Grade Baseball starts this Saturday at 8:15 a.m.

8:15! On a Saturday? That's just cruel. And I haven't seen that baseball glove since last June. Where to even start looking ...

From Mom: Sunday is Dad's birthday. Hope you are coming over since you forgot last year.

Yes, but we've got swimming at 9 a.m., church at 11 a.m., soccer at 1 p.m., Carolyn's play date ends at 2:30 p.m., I somehow need to squeeze in grocery shopping, so if I leave at 3 p.m. I will get there by 4 p.m., that gives us two hours to talk, sing and eat cake before I have to get in the car so I can get the kids home and in bed by 7 p.m. Yes, I will make this work.

From amazon: Your order for the cotton sateen sheets, size King, color beige, have shipped!

Sh*t. I meant to order Full. In my dreams I have a King bed. Will have to return them. Like I need one more errand. And at the post office, no less.

From Mom: By the way, we're going to a concert at 4:30, so come early!


From BESTDruggs: VICODIN! PERCOCET! VALIUM !! 50 perCent off, beST deals eVer!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you  ...

Do you find it relaxing or stressful to answer emails during off-work hours?

Read More