Increase productivity by only checking email three times a day. A group of writers and editors at Fast Company decided to check email just twice a day. They were nervous at first, and some of their colleagues didn’t appreciate the switch to longer response times. Ultimately, most liked the experiment and thought three times a day might be ideal to keep email from becoming a distraction and still be responsive to colleagues.
Stay connected with your network on a schedule. Bond, a new app for your smartphone, lets you set a schedule for how often to contact people in your network. It will remind you to call, text or send a social media message to anyone you choose. It’s a great way to remember to keep in touch with people in your professional network who you don’t speak to often.
Quick way to find receipts in Gmail. Searching your Gmail account is useful for finding all sorts of information, writes Lifehacker’s Whitson Gordon, but a new tool makes it even easier to find receipts you’ve had emailed to you. Simply search “my purchases” in the toolbar and Gmail will generate a list of things you’ve bought with that account. You can also modify the search with keywords to narrow your purchases down even more.
— Adapted from “Search Your Email Receipts Right from Google,” Whitson Gordon, Lifehacker.
Liven up your work area to boost productivity. A recent Twitter hashtag contest from Wired to see who had the saddest workspace produced some truly awful #saddesk photos. Ergonomics and design experts weren’t pleased, noting that dingy work spaces affect productivity and mood. Clean up your space and put some thought into decorating and you’ll get more done!