The same report states that the average email user receives 72 email messages per day (corporate users tend to receive more, consumers typically receive less). That daily number averages 14 spam messages so that means the average email user receives 58 legitimate email messages per day.
A research report at http://goo.gl/aiBU4, issued about a year ago by the University of California, Irvine, and co-written with United States Army researchers, found that people who did not look at e-mail regularly at work were less stressed and more productive than others.
The study, A Pace Not Dictated by Electrons: An Empirical Study of Work Without Email, looked at 13 workers in a typical office setting and asked them to discontinue e-mail for five days. The results were that during the e-mail hiatus, these people spent longer periods of time focusing on a single task at work and shifted between computer windows much less than those who were slaves to their in-box.
The researchers also tested people’s stress levels by attaching wearable heart rate monitors and found that their stress levels were much lower when not checking e-mail on a regular basis.
Gloria Mark, an informatics professor who has been studying the effects of e-mail in the workplace since 2004, said: “We suggest doing what we call batching e-mails, where organizations send e-mails once or twice a day, rather than continually, so employees know not to check their e-mail every 10 minutes.” Ms. Mark also suggests taking “e-mail vacations” where people take a few days away from their in-box.
I think I will back away from this computer for a while and take a walk...