Well I returned from a 10 day break from work this past Saturday, and on Monday I hit the ground running. Of course before I left for work I made two big mistakes. I subscribed to these two mailing lists at work and I didn't want them filling up my inbox so I created some rules. Well I made a mistake, rather than filtering mail sent To a DL I filtered the mail From a DL. Well this is interesting in that if you do that and you get a message from some one who is a member of a DL, then the rule kicks in. I guess that makes sense, but the end result was hundreds of duplicate and redirected mail to these new folders. Ick...

Anyway, by the end of Monday I had managed to go from about 400 messages in my inbox to 5 messages. I did not check mail while on vacation. Not once, and that was the bomb. Not only did I go from 400 to 5, I did this on a rather busy meeting day. This was all possible because of:

  1. Getting Things Done
  2. ClearContext

Much of the email was thread based where I needed only the most recent version, so those were easy to delete. A bunch were questions I needed to answer, so I did. A big chunk were reference type information. This is where I love ClearContext. I can easily assign a topic to a message and hit Alt-M which files that message automatically to a topic based folder. This is FAST. No expanding folders, drag and dropping a message etc. Saved me a lot of time.

This made me realize something else. This was the second time this year I went 7 work days w/o checking email. You know what? It worked. I trust that when I get back to work I have a system that allows me to process all the stuff and get back in the game w/o increasing my stress level and ruining my vacation. Microsoft gives me 15 days a year where they pay me to do nothing... doing email on vacation is essentially losing out on time my mind needs to not do anything work related. I can tell you that I started Monday with a lot more energy and excitement specifically because I avoided thinking or doing work while relaxing.

Back to Maui. We thought we would do all this stuff on the island, but the place we stayed was in Kapalua which is about an hour north from the airport. Not close to anything really. So we basically sat on the beach, sat by the pool, drank good stuff, ate good stuff and had a good time hanging out.

Oh, and I learned to play Golf. I think I like it. I'm going to start going to the driving range near my apartment, maybe even get some clubs since I'm so tall and was told not to mess around with short clubs or I would develop bad habbits. My wife happens to be an excellent golfer (golfed since she was 8), so she is pretty happy about all this.