Gmail Meter Tattles on Your Email Habits

Fill water bottle. Power up computer. Scan The New York Times, Daily Mail (I know), and a slew of blogs. Catching up on the latest news—while hydrating—is simply a part of my morning routine.  In fact, “Inbox Intervention,” this issue’s look at the intrusive nature of email, was based on an article I read nearly a year ago on Lifehacker.

The article was an instructional guide to setting up Gmail Meter, a script run from Google Docs that monthly sends you analytics on your email usage—the number sent and received, traffic patterns, and average word count, for example.

Once I set up my own Gmail Meter and the stats started rolling in, I was horror-struck. From just my personal email account, I was sending and receiving hundreds of messages a month. Add that to the thousands I was receiving on a near-daily basis at my job, and it became clear that email was a bigger part of my life than I imagined.

One year later, I’m happy to report I’ve taken control of my inbox. There’s room to grow—like not reaching for my iPhone the moment I wake up—but I’m no longer drowning in messages.

So go ahead and give the Gmail Meter a try. You might be surprised what you uncover.