by Josh Millar
While our devices can be a major source of distraction, with the right apps, they can transform into prime productivity tools. While these apps won’t save the day if other time-management skills are entirely lacking, they do make a great support for those focused on maximizing their time. If you’re interested in using technology to help you work towards greater efficiency, here are a few apps worth checking out:
This is the Pomodoro Technique in app form. It serves as a guide to follow the 4 25-minutes sessions of focused work with short breaks in between, followed by a longer 15-20-minute break. It also offers a task-manager tool and gives you statistics to track your progress. It’s a great way to promote concentration while also supporting healthy breaks, keeping your mind at its best.
Things is your to-do list, streamlined. Instead of a flurry of Post-It notes or lists in several notebooks, this app is the go-to place to get and stay organized. It syncs across devices, so you’re always able to access your current list, and it provides a clean visual experience of your tasks. You can organize by when they need to be completed, down to the time of day, and you can store notes within each item without cluttering your main list. If you want a to-do list that helps you check things off, this app is worth a try.
The striking, colorful graphics in this app make it appealing and easy to use. If you’re a visual person, this is the app for you. Instead of just a vertical list to keep track of your tasks, this app offers a progress bar that shows you where you’re at with just a glance. It’s a great added boost of motivation to keep you working through that mid-afternoon slump. From major projects that need to be broken down into smaller steps to simply drinking enough water throughout the day, this app can handle tasks big and small.
Maybe you’re browsing the web during a quick work break, someone sends you an interesting post on LinkedIn, or an article catches your attention while you’re working on some Facebook marketing — whatever the scenario, I often find that I come across these bits of online information that feel valuable and intriguing, but I don’t want them to distract me from the task at hand. This app is the perfect solution. Rather than keeping countless tabs open while you work or accumulating a pile of bookmarks, you can store all of these articles in one place that’s easy to navigate. Then, when you have a small break in your day or have a specific article you want to reference, they’ll all be organized for you.
Distraction is almost inevitable in this day in age. With multiple devices and communication platforms, we can’t work in a vacuum completely free of distractions. What we can do, though, is minimize those potential distractions and limit how much they interfere with our day. This app helps you track your activity to see which sites are grabbing your time, and it lets you classify specific sites as productive or distracting. The report you’ll get at the end of the day can be just the reminder you need to stop letting distractions steal your valuable time or just the motivation you need to continue working so efficiently.
Employing an app or two to support your productivity efforts is a great strategy. In a world where we’re almost never separated from our devices, we might as well put them to work for us in a way that helps us to work smarter. Do you have any go-to productivity apps that have helped streamline your workflow? Share them in the comments.