Xin Fu: The Martial Art of emailing – Breathe in before shooting

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Oh no ! These words echo in your head as you let go the arrow and did not aim enough at the target. Now, nothing except the wind can influence its path and you see eventually go into the woods behind your target. What happened ? once again, you released the string too soon and you did know but it was already too late.

It”s exactly the same when you send an email, you click on the «send» button and sometimes regret to have done so nearly at the same time.

Fortunately, there is an option that can help avoiding this kind of misadventure in the future.

The idea is simply to delay the sending of your email by 3 or 5 minutes. It will give you enough time to realize your possible mistakes and act upon them.

Another advantage of delaying your response is to avoid distractions. Indeed, while in the process of going through your inbox and sending your replies, you may be interrupted by the incoming emails you have just generated.

So follow this tip if you use Outlook :

How to defer the sending of an email in Outlook ?

and this one if you use Gmail:

How to undo the sending of an email in Gmail ?

Remember the following:

"Once a word leaves your mouth, you cannot chase it back even with the swiftest horse."  (chinese proverb)

Do you have other tips to delay your email ?

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Comments
3 Responses to “Xin Fu: The Martial Art of emailing – Breathe in before shooting”
  1. Very true. I must say that I am even delaying some mails to the next day, especially when I am very pissed and that I wrote an answer immediately after reading the mail. It allows me either not sending it at all (in case I miss understood the first mail), or to edulcorate a bit my wording so I am not to rude.
    But, you know… I’m french so I should be rude sometimes :o)))

  2. Definitely the way to go!

  3. zyxo says:

    Nice comparison. As I have been an amateur archer for some years, I understand exactly the “oh shit” feeling miliseconds before the arrow takes off and you realize you have let go to soon.
    As for emails, mostly I do not postpone, but as a good habit I always carefully read, and if necessary rework,what I wrote, before sending. Often – mostly when I am pissed of for some reason – I end up with a clear difference between what I finally wrote and what I initially started to write.

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