CNN: E-mail addicts get 12-step program

CNN has posted an interesting story on e-mail addiction and a 12-Step program for fighting it:

“Developed for cases such as a golfer who checked his BlackBerry after every shot, and lost a potential client who wanted nothing to do with his obsession, Marsha Egan’s plan taps into deepening concern that e-mail misuse can cost businesses millions of dollars in lost productivity.”

The 12 Steps are not all that different from most of the email tips that get floated these days, though the one that has had the biggest impact for me is #7 – “turn off automatic send/receive.”

As a bonus, check out Nathan Zeldes’ favorite email tip over on the IT@Intel blog.  Was there really a time when people received enough physical paperwork that they had to manage it as Nathan describes?


  1. Here are 12 reasons why I don’t think this will work … at least not for this e-mail addict:
    Buzzblog: 12-step program for e-mail addiction stumbles badly
    Talk about offering an alcoholic a drink? No. 2 of 12-step program for e-mail addiction: “Commit to keeping your inbox empty.” Here are 11 other reasons why it won’t work.

  2. Step 13: Take advantage of a generous discount coupon to purchase ClearContext Pro 3.0. (hint, hint, wink, wink).

  3. “Was there really a time when people received enough physical paperwork”? You better believe it. I remember how in the 80’s people would bring a pile of paper mail — the content of their “In” tray — to staff meetings, and try to process it in plain view; just as they do with email today. Though I don’t think the overall time devoted to this mail was as high as today’s email burden.

  4. Thanks for the info, guys!