It was also brief, and more than a bit of a cheat, because I used The E-mail Game to boomerang out various e-mails that I didn't need to deal with immediately, so there are about 50 scheduled to come back at various points over the next month. And when I woke up this morning, there were 10 new e-mails, and 20 had boomeranged back.
But I've dealt with the 10 new ones already (hooray!), and I'm going to sit down now and deal with the 20 boomeranged, and by 9 a.m., I plan to be back at Inbox Zero. After at least a decade of using my Inbox as an increasingly stressed out storage space for to-do list items (many of which were so long overdue that it was just ludicrous), after having gotten to the place where I literally couldn't bring myself to even open my e-mail and look at it some days, because the very thought made me teary and freaked out, I feel as if a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders.
Almost all of the credit goes to Mary Robinette Kowal, who told me about the free program, The E-mail Game, which somehow got me past my e-mail block. A few hours weekly over the course of the summer took me from 700 e-mails to 0.
It's bizarre; I'm a smart person, I'm strong-willed (as my mother will attest), and on some level, I think I should be able to just deal with things. It feels sort of ridiculous to say that I needed a technological workaround to get past this psychological problem I'd developed with my e-mail. But hell -- the facts don't lie. It worked, and I'm grateful, and my life is better now.
Mary, I owe you a drink. Or several. :-) I hear you like Scotch?