By: Darin McClure

Have you ever noticed how scary an email without context can be? Or rather, how intimidating your inbox can feel when you first read an email that isn’t positive?

We’ve all received the email that turns our stomach or makes our cheeks flush. All caps. No punctuation to speak of. Something that wasn’t followed by a smiley face so we automatically assume that it reads as “annoyed”. They happen at home and at work. They waste our time by causing us anxiety. We dwell. We analyze. We panic. We cower. We respond immediately out of emotion.


It’s easy to be afraid of what you don’t know or what you aren’t sure of. The first time you read an email, you might interpret it as sounding “angry” or “terse”. The second time, not so much. So why do we do this to ourselves? Why to we tie ourselves up into knots of anxiety? Because we feel this sense of immediacy. We HAVE to respond right now with only the information available to us. We HAVE to assume the worst.

Well, guess what? We most definitely don’t.

That email that’s sitting in your inbox, the one that you’re dreading to respond to or feel really crappy after reading, walk away from it. Walk away for a few hours. Do something else. Think about everything but that email. Then, come back and read it again – with a cool head and calm heart.

Hitting send without reflection can get you into trouble. Whether it’s email or Facebook, a lot of issues can be solved when you just. walk. away.

Respond when you feel sure of your response – not just obligated to have a reaction.

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