Automation Hell

As a part of my effort to get a better handle on my time, I installed an autoresponder on my business email account informing senders that I will be checking my email only twice a day. (I also unsubscribed myself from dozens of ezines, newsletters, etc., and am not keeping any social networking sites up on my desktop.)

Think about this… what happens when you get an email from a source that has an autoresponder on their end as well? After a mere hour of the emails replying to each other I have a fairly full in-box. Boy, am I glad I got a chance to check my mail while waiting at the airport… can you imagine what would have happened if I didn’t check it until tomorrow? YIPES! In any case, I have since changed the email which that sender send to, but I don’t know how to stop the autoresponder. I guess I’ll just turn mine off for a few hours.

I genuinely think this is funny!

What is not funny is why I have time in the airport. American had a delayed flight. I can deal with that… usually. But since I never got notification from American, I consider this a problem. I checked in for my flight online yesterday. I opted in for status notifications and even though my first flight was delayed long enough that I’d never make my second flight, I never got any notification. It’s a good thing I sat near the ticket counter, else I’d have never heard the announcement about the delay. The ticketing agent was very helpful. I’m now sitting in the Delta section of the terminal waiting for an 11:20 flight to Cincinnati (my first flight, to St. Louis was supposed to be at 7:25, so a 4-hour delay).

Even more irritating… when the ticketing agent was busy getting an earlier flight on board, I checked the American site from my phone, and it still showed the flight connecting just fine (which explains why they never sent the notification). Now, I have half a day in an airport, and am thankful for WiFi hotspots (even though it wasn’t free).

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Over the last few weeks it has become apparent that I seem busier than ever, but have been getting less done. I’d already determined the culprits (email, social networking sites, politics, television, etc.), so I decided to follow some of the suggestions in the book The 4-Hour Workweek, by Timothy Ferris.

  • Media Fast (no news shows, websites, or newspapers) for one week
  • Cut email down to checking it 2x a day, and unsubscribed to dozens of lists
  • Choosing 2 priorities that must be accomplished each day
  • Ignoring the unimportant!