I recently attended for work the Manager Tools M Conference from October 9-10, 2019 in Dallas, TX.
I made a deliberate decision to not check my work email from just before the beginning of the conference on Wednesday, Oct. 9 until I got to the airport on the evening of Thursday, Oct. 10.
My main motivation for this decision was because I wanted to stay as focused as possible on the conference content, and the people at the conference.
I should also point out that before walking into the conference on Wednesday morning my work email Inbox was empty.
In addition, I would also like to say my only motivation for writing this blog post is to validate that getting your Email Inbox to Zero can happen.
If you read through the whole post, I didn't get every email with a Next Action or Project done. All I did in David Allen's Getting Things Done (GTD) terms is (1) Capture, (2) Clarify, and (3) Organize.
Once at the airport: I VPN'd into work; downloaded all my email on the server to my "Clarify" folder in Outlook; and went into airplane/off-line mode.
During the first two hours on the plane on my way back to San Diego I cleared my Inbox.
I had 213 emails to process: ten were calendar invites; 24 were quick email replies (less than 2 minutes), 51 turned into Next Actions (three of which started new Projects), 23 were Reference, and the rest were Trash.
After I sync'd up email the next day (Friday morning) I had 28 new messages. Four of them were calendar invites, and four of them I had to Read (less than 2 minutes) and then Trash as they weren't worth keeping for Reference. The rest I just Trashed after reading the email title and first line of the message. No new Next Actions or Projects.
So, it is doable. It takes practice and making it a habit. Here is a link for more information on GTD coaching and teaching.