New year, new you! Or more specifically, new year, the same but
more organized you. There are countless apps all promising to help make you you’re most organized, productive, and focused self. But who has the time to go through all of them? After all, we are trying to manage our time, so spending hours going through and trying out countless apps seems like the opposite of productive time management. In the spirit of optimizing your time, we went through and found some new favorites. If you’ve decided that 2020 is the year you start keeping a detailed schedule, learn more about how you manage your time, or you’re simply on the lookout for a better app to keep the calendar you already have, you’re in luck. There are a myriad of different ways to manage your time and plan wisely. No two people have the exact same way of scheduling and organizing their time. Besides, if it was all the same, we wouldn’t have so many apps. We’ve rounded up apps to keep your day-to-day appointments in order, to help you understand how you spend your time or how you can spend it differently, and apps that help you focus on the task at hand. For many of us, our greatest organizational tool is the device that distracts us the most, our phones. Who among us hasn’t opened their phone with every intention of responding to a few emails and setting a reminder to call your dentist only to find themselves in an Instagram Stories hole and TikTok compilation videos on YouTube? We’ve all done it. Calendar
Calendar is a smarter way to stay organized. Using artificial intelligence, the Calendar app not only tracks your appointments for you, but it tracks how you spend your time to make suggestions to help you manage your time more efficiently. We barely have enough time for everything that’s already on our calendars let alone making time to look at our calendars for patterns and opportunities for improvement. The app has a basic version that is free, but if you want the Pro version, it costs $10 a month.
Photo: Courtesy of Calendar. More Vantage
Promising a simpler way to planning your day, Vantage’s user interface is stacked rather than offering a traditional calendar view. The app’s design attempts to reduce visual clutter for a more pleasing appearance. It also allows for drag-and-drop scheduling and color coordinating tasks and appointments so that even at a glance, your calendar makes more sense. Another bonus, this app is completely free.
Photo: Courtesy of Vantage. More TimeTree
Need to plan around multiple calendars and not just your own? Perhaps you need an app that allows for seamless syncing of multiple calendars in one. If so, TimeTree might be the perfect fit. You can invite coworkers, friends, or family to a group calendar to start sharing tasks and appointments. Once they’ve downloaded the app, you can all start talking with each other and coordinating through the app. You can share memos and get notifications for when anyone has made an update to the schedule. Things just get simpler when you can keep them in one place.
Photo: Courtesy of TimeTree. More Story continues ToDoist
ToDoist is a dream app for anyone who loves listmaking. If your go-to way of staying organized is through a series of lists, consider this one checked off. ToDoist sorts your tasks based on groups and patterns in your entries. You can organize by hashtag categories, share tasks in a group and assign items to different people, and keep track of a task's progress. To use ToDoist yourself, the app is free. For premium features or team sharing, it will cost you $36 or $60 a year, respectively.
Photo: Courtesy of ToDoist. More Google Tasks
Google’s office apps are wonderfully simplistic and Google Tasks is no different. It does exactly what you want it to do. It allows you to create a to-do list with descriptions, tasks, and subtasks. If you’re a Gmail user, you can see an overview of your Tasks next to Google Calendar and Google Keep. You also get the benefit of being able to use and integrate exclusively Google apps should you choose to do so.
Courtesy of Google. More Bear
If you’re trying to consolidate the number of apps you use, Bear might be the task app for you. Bear keeps notes and tasks together. Like ToDoist, you can make group lists and notes that are sorted by hashtag, formated, or freeform making it easy to find everything you want to do. Bear would be a good fit for anyone looking for something a bit more open in its formatting style. The app has a free version, but if you want to sync Bear across all of your devices, it costs $15 for the year.
Photo: Courtesy of Bear. More Toggl
Simple and intuitive, Toggl is a time tracker geared toward keeping an eye on how your time is spent. It syncs across multiple devices, so whether you are working from your laptop, tablet, or phone, Toggl can keep track. This is absolutely essential for anyone that bills clients by the hour or needs to keep track of total billable hours for work. Mark this app down as a freelancer’s dream. There are plenty of other benefits outside of work as well. If you feel like you’re spending too much time on a task or wonder if some of your time could be freed up to spend elsewhere, Toggl can help you do that. The basic version of Toggl is free, but they offer a premium version with features like profitability trackers and sending schedule reports via email for $9 a month.
Photo: Courtesy of Toggl. More Forest
Forest ticks multiple boxes. It is a productivity app that gamifies uninterrupted work while doing its part to give back in tangible ways. As far as productivity apps go, it is unique. Each time you want to put down your phone and not get distracted while you work on a project, you open Forest and plant a virtual tree. The tree grows the longer you don’t look at your phone. If you leave the app to check other things, the tree withers and dies. For each tree you grow successfully, you earn coins. These coins can be redeemed for
in collaboration with the Trees for the Future organization. So far, more than 400,000 trees have been planted thanks to the app. In an effort to gamify the app even further, you can invite friends to join you and grow a tree together. You can download Forest and start planting trees for $1.99.
Photo: Courtesy of Forest. More Focus Keeper Pro
Studies have shown that focusing on a project for predetermined intervals broken up by short breaks is an effective way to keep focused on the task at hand, but who has time to time themselves as they’re working? It’s easy to lose track of how long you’ve been staring at a task, and conversely, how long you’ve been taking a break. That’s where Focus Keeper Pro comes in. With customizable intervals, you can choose a task, set intervals for your focus times and your break times, and the app does the rest. It will remind you of each interval. Once you’ve completed four focus sessions, it rewards you with a longer break. You can get Focus Keeper Pro for $1.99.
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