Haven't received an e-mail in 10 minutes, so you send yourself a message just to make sure the network isn't down or something?
It may be time to admit you have a problem, says Marsha Egan, a life coach who appears to have touched a collective nerve with seminars that help folks reduce their dependence on e-mail in 12 steps. (The number is no coincidence.)
The anecdote is a true one, culled from a client. She's got lots of them, like the golfer who checked his BlackBerry after every shot and the client whose inbox was packed with 3,600 messages.
Just so no one mistakes her for a psychiatrist, Egan says folks like them have an "e-diction." The affliction sounds gimmicky but can result in serious productivity losses and lots of stress besides.
In an interview with IT Business Edge, Egan says it takes folks an average of four minutes to recover from an interruption -- which translates to two hours of lost time a day for people who receive 30 e-mails. Another problem: those who get so caught up in reading -- and worse -- responding to mundane messages that they neglect the important stuff.
Egan isn't the only one who thinks this is a problem. A recent Web Worker Daily blog post lists some tips from psychiatrist Edward Hallowell, author of "CrazyBusy: Overstretched, Overbooked, and About to Snap."
When it comes to the BlackBerry, known affectionately -- or not -- to its users as the CrackBerry, a couple of Canadian fellas seem to think it's better to just go with the information overload flow.
Calling themselves the Crack Team, they figured they weren't the only ones "hanging out in back lanes looking for better signal strength and hanging around malls looking for new accessories and devices." So they created the Crackberry.com Web site, which is packed with BlackBerry tips, rumors and games, among other content.