Ever find yourself frittering away the day responding to email after email? Ever think that if you'd just spent 8 hours working on that project, you'd be done and still have time to answer those emails in front of the TV later that night? Sure, we all have.
Why we simply don't do the hard stuff first is a fascinating question in its own right. I mean, if we're going to be happier at the end of the day having ignored the emails, why don't we learn to ignore them? It's too much to get into here, but see the psychological literature on intertemporal choice and previous posts and the Don't Delay blog if this interests you.
The good news is that the always-innovating Google is here to help with their experimental "Take a Break" feature in Gmail. When clicked, it prevents you from checking your email for 15 minutes, telling you do something more productive instead.