Why Email is so Damn Addictive

Nobody ever changed the world by checking and replying to email. But, it takes up a significant amount of time for individuals and organizations.

When I did a workshop for a large fortune 500 company, employees said they were spending between 3–4 hours a day on email.

Say an employee has a salary that’s $125,000 a year. If we assume it comes to $10,000 a month divided by 160 hours of work, that’s roughly 60 dollars an hour. Multiply that times 5 hours a day, and companies pay their employees $300 a day to check and respond to email. It’s likely my estimate is conservative. On a team of 30 people, a company pays its employees $9000 a day to check and respond to email.

The fact that you never know what you’re going to get when you check your email or update your status on social media makes both of them addictive. The creators designed products like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram with that intention.

You could receive a flood of digital validation with hearts, likes, retweets, and other meaningless metrics. Or you might check your email and discover an invitation to a speaking engagement. As Jocelyn Glei said in her interview on The Unmistakable Creative, your email functions like a slot machine.

Before you Go

If you’re addicted to email, but want to start making your ideas happen, check out our creative project workbook. Click here to download it.

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