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How Ashton Kutcher’s genius email hack can keep you productive *and* proactive in 2018


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Photo: Instagram/@aplusk

Trying to scratch off “answer emails” from your to-list is one of the seemingly most impossible tasks to complete. Right when you finally have an empty inbox, you blink, and it immediately fills up again. But, a certain unexpected hero is to your rescue with a productivity hack—none other than Ashton Kutcher.

Instead of diving right into his inbox first thing, like he used to, now the actor first takes some time to pinpoint his daily goals. By regarding incoming emails as “everyone else’s to-do list for you,” he’s been able to drastically shrink a process that used to absorb at least two hours of his morning.

“When I wake up, I spend the first hour of my work not looking at email, and actually just writing out what it is that I want to accomplish in a given day. And then before I go through my emails, I’ll do all my outgoing, outbound stuff, which is what I want everyone else to do for me. And then I’ll go and get reactive to whatever’s going on.” —Ashton Kutcher

“When I wake up, I spend the first hour of my work not looking at email, and actually just writing out what it is that I want to accomplish in a given day,” Kutcher told Thrive Global. “And then before I go through my emails, I’ll do all my outgoing, outbound stuff, which is what I want everyone else to do for me. And then I’ll go and get reactive to whatever’s going on.”

As a result of his smart strategy, Kutcher’s mornings have completely changed for the better, and his days have become more productive, as he no longer needs to spend all day “doing other people’s work” (responding to countless messages).

Sure, it might be easier for Kutcher, who has an entire team working for him, than many other people to get away with not immediately responding to incoming emails, but even if you haven’t reached #girlboss-status just yet, you can still learn a thing or two from his productivity tactics.

Here’s how prioritizing your eye health might increase workplace productivity. Or, check out these apps that will help you check more off your to-do list.