Have you ever printed a longer email message so that you could read it? If you can answer yes to that question, you are not alone. There are very good reasons why so many of us are more comfortable doing this.

Consider the fact that we read 30% to 50% slower online. The concept of reading, whether paper or digital, seems to be the same, yet the end result is not. Instead of taking time to print out more mail, which is not the best time management technique, try some of the following techniques:

To maintain a steady pace as you read and to keep you focused, use your mouse to:

  1. Underline the center one-third of each line. Pace yourself steadily from left to right, then quickly return to the next line. This keeps your eyes focused, and you will be picking up the left and right sides in your peripheral vision; or
  2. Draw a straight line vertically down the page. Again this maintains a steady pace and keeps your focus.

If you frequently become tired when you read, whether paper or electronic, you may be constantly regressing to what you have already read. This often is simply a habit, or is the result of not concentrating on what you are currently reading. The outcome is that you have reread so much of the article that you move forward very slowly.

  1. Move line by line, using the right side arrows to scroll. Read the top line right under the ruler bar, then move to the next line. By blocking out what you have already read, you keep your eyes from bouncing back and rereading.
  2. If the material is difficult, and you actually need to refer back to previously read material for a reference, then use the bottom bar on your screen as your guide. It allows you to check back for a point but still draws your eyes to that lower moving line when you do not need to check back.

Being able to process your inbox faster, while absorbing the contents better is a boon to your productivity. These are just a few of the techniques that we demonstrate and have you practice during our email seminars.