Okay, I think I now have a solution for me which keeps me informed by the people who need to inform me, while cutting out all the noise from emails.

The goal is to give me more time to work on my internet business by cutting everyones biggest time consumer – email – down to next to nothing.

I have a Skype account that very few people have access to.  My closest friends online, who are just as busy as me and don’t do idle chatter, my developers, and my students.  I might hold one conversation a week average through that medium.

I have my support desk via TicketDesk Pro which has given me back 90 minutes a day of my life by cutting support time down from 2 hours to 30 minutes.  Most of the regular questions have the answers inside the Standard Responses (SRs).

I now have a private forum by which I can communicate with my developers, and where everything is recorded for all projects.  No more hunting through emails.

So that I don’t have to keep checking it every 30 minutes or so, I’ve created a unique email address where all notifications of new posts or responses from the private boards are sent to.

I’ve set up PopTray with just that one email account.  I’ve set it so that a double click on the PopTray system tray icon opens the private forum in my browser, and a middle click opens up the PopTray mail window where I can delete the new notification message.

And that 3-way punch seems to be working really well.

#1 – A Skype account that very few people have access to.
#2 – TicketDesk Pro to handle customer issues.
#3 – A private forum with email notifications picked up by PopTray.

I’m not sure if this exact set up would work for you, but it means that for me I can now largely ignore my email as the people that really need to get hold of me can.  I’ll leave this in place for another couple of weeks and then I may at last be down to checking my email once a week.

Maybe a variation of this would work for you and you can get a whole chunk of your life back.

-Frank Haywood