Email Anxiety

I won’t pose this as a question, but rather a fact. All of us have at least once experience email anxiety. Email anxiety usually comes in the form fearing what the email will say from the email sender, usually the main cause of the anxiety. To further expand on this, imagine a co-worker or manager who keeps on emailing you with things to do that don’t make sense, or someone who keeps on changing their mind on what they want, or lastly, someone who wants to world and believes you’re the one to deliver it.

Dealing with email anxiety is weird, because talking things out isn’t really an option. I however do not consider ‘ignoring’ a form of approach, that’s just being inappropriate. I have experience email anxiety twice in the last 4 years of my HR career. It can be debilitating to performance and personal morale.

My first case of email anxiety was resolved by leaving my employer. Drastic, maybe. Necessary, certainly. My most recent case of email anxiety has been manageable and I have a game plan. Firstly, I openly talk to my closes peers (in HR of course) and manager about the situation in whole, focusing on fact, and openly share the email culprits. I respond to all emails with facts only and removing any empathic, apologetic, and wording that may have the recipient consider a weakness. I learned how to write strategic emails from a professor at Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Bob Basil, about 3 years ago and it has changed my email communication for the better. From there, I build up my professional reputation by managing multiple time consuming situations via emails and before you know it, “BAM!” like Chef Emeril, the emails stop.

The good news. I know how to deal with email anxiety. The bad news, its not quick and simple.  Email anxiety will exist, you now have to choose the deal with it and win. Good luck.

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