Do you feel like you get the most out of your day?
If you feel like the 24 hours you’ve been given each day are not enough to stay on track with your tasks and responsibilities, then it’s time to consider assistance.
Revamp your life with a little help from your smartphone!
Can apps make your life easier?
Life will not slow down. There are those who swear by slow living, but that’s not really possible for most of us – especially those who are involved in careers where personal brands matter.
The best you can do is fine tune your daily routine to tame the speed of daily life. Nobody wants to feel overwhelmed. This is where productivity and lifestyle come in. In most instances, you don’t even have to pay to get the most use out of popular applications.
But where to begin? I have selected a few evergreens.
5 useful apps to get you started
As someone who reads a lot on my screen, Inoreader has been a godsend. It’s one of the best and most feature-packed RSS feed readers out there. Inoreader offers all the conveniences of RSS feed readers like tagging, folders, stars and saving articles for later, and builds on top with intuitive filters and a log of all previously read articles.
That’s what makes Inoreader unbeatable and essential whether you want to stay on top of news, are a student or work in a field that has you read a lot of industry-related material. The filters and if-this-then-that reg expressions allow a full overhaul of your subscriptions. Inoreader also shines in the content discovery department. You have a whole area dedicated to recommending the top feeds in different categories and user-generated collections.
Although primarily used as a mobile app, you’d be missing out on a seamless Chrome integration through its browser extension.
Inoreader goes well together with Pocket. So well in fact, it has a built-in integration with Pocket. So what’s so great about Pocket? Its main feature is saving articles and blogs you want to read for later even if you don’t have Internet connection.
Much like bookmarks, but in a more visually appealing way. Users are in full control of how the text is formatted from font style to text size. That’s on top of tags, categories and highlights. You can even listen to articles thanks to the app’s audio playback function. If you’re also curious to see what everyone else is reading, Pocket can send you article recommendations based on the number of times an article has been pocketed.
“I’m able to keep track of all the articles that get sent my way. In this post-Google Reader world, it’s my primary way of keeping up on things,” says TEDx Digital Strategist Alex Rudloff
TickTick proudly follows in the footsteps of many to-do list apps. However, what this app does a bit differently is its approach to motivation and time management. The built-in Pomodoro timer is a must to try out, if you ever have trouble with actually sitting down and completing a task. Another great feature is the addition of white noise options to block any distracting thoughts.
The integration with third-party calendars connects your daily to-do log with your whole week or month, giving you a smooth sense of transition and keeping up with tasks both big and small. The habit-tracking tool visualizes your performance over time of repetitive tasks. Want to keep up that yoga practice going? See how much you follow through on this year’s resolution.
Needless to say, TickTick aces all the other things you expect such as lists, tags, due dates, sub-stacks and pinned mobile notifications. You’re never going to be behind on anything ever again.
If there’s one thing that we can agree on, it’s that traffic is the worst thing possible.
Waze swears to reduce the amount of time you spend in traffic – something that Google Maps has been doing kind of. Waze is built around instantly telling you about traffic conditions and adding real-time rerouting. This way you’re not trapped in traffic. All while you’re able to listen to music as well as the navigation.
Perhaps Waze’s greatest strength comes in the planning stages. You can save different routes and be told when the best time to start your journey is, planning your drive around traffic. You can add stops along the way based on what you need from gas to drive-throughs.
Waze doesn’t remain static. If you experience inaccuracies or obstacles, you can submit feedback, which is then used to make adjustments and made available to all users.
Personal finances also offer a potent arena for optimization and organization. Until you actually sit down and take stock of your spending, you don’t really know what’s happening with your finances. Mint is the application that makes managing your money a blast.
The application works for all your personal finances – cash, credit cards, investments, and bills. You keep your eye on everything all at once, can set savings goals, track subscription price rises and can schedule auto payments.
How to choose the right ones for me?
As with falling in love, you’ll know it when you see it. You don’t want to install a bunch of apps for the sake of having applications.
There are no hard and fast rules other than find what works best for you. The number of five-star reviews and glowing endorsements don’t mean a thing, if you don’t find the application enjoyable to use. The app stores are brimming with options so don’t stop on the first application you find.
What I would greatly suggest is going through your options one by one. Don’t download a bunch of apps and expect them to solve all your problems. Dedicate the necessary time to play around with a single application at first. Then move on to the next.