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Get Better On PC & Mac: Follow These 10 Simple, Useful Tricks for Higher Productivity

Get Better On PC & Mac: Follow These 10 Simple, Useful Tricks for Higher Productivity

Are you working hard every day to get better? Reaching goals?

Recently I’ve had a conversation with an older guy who owns a pawn shop. He started to complain about business not doing well, how he lacks ideas and the drive, how he’s demoralized and overwhelmed by the technology advancement. “We can’t adapt so quickly to the new stuff like you youngsters. We’re slowly being discarded,” he told me while trying to persuade me to buy a used Mac, which he couldn’t use and understand well.

How are you doing in the tech compartment?

The technology today really progresses quickly. And many might feel left behind, or frightened to compete in this fast-paced world. Take the modern work atmosphere for example. New and improved technologies are a must nowadays ‒ if you can’t cope with the latest tech or apps, you’re outdated. Being outdated might put you in a bad position or bring you trouble. That’s why I’m sharing some tips that will help you use both Mac & Windows machine better and easier.

If you’re not as good in the tech section and you’re trying to fit in the new work environment, this is the post for you. It doesn’t matter if you’re a bit older. It doesn’t have to be that tough. You can do it. Start using these 10 tips and you’ll get better on PC & Mac in no time!

1. Quickly hide or close a lot of running apps.

There are many reasons to open a lot of folders at the same time. It could be either to transfer files from one to another or to rearrange your folders simply through the partitions. If not managed well, your screen can get stacked with a bunch of folders which might just confuse you instead of making you more productive. To navigate more easily through folders that you need, it is advisable that you close or hide the ones that are redundant at the moment.

The question is: how to do it?

Get Better On PC & Mac - quickly close an app

    For Mac OS: press and hold the command button ⌘ and keep pressing the Tab key. By doing this, you will list the apps and for the those you wish to close, you just have to press Q key, while for those that you want to hide, press the H key.

    2. Type quickly with your voice with a “hidden” Dictation app.

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    Get Better On PC & Mac - type with your voice

      If you need something written down and you’re not skilled with typing, the Dictation app could prove to be very useful. You can find the Dictation app in System Preferences within the Apple menu. To start writing with your voice, press the (fn) button (located in the upper left corner of a standard Mac keyboard), start talking and after you have finished, press the (fn) button again and your speech will be converted to text.

      The best feature of this app is that you can use it while offline, which makes it convenient while traveling. That is if you don’t mind the strange looks you’ll be getting while talking to yourself. This program offers its users the option to edit occasional mistakes that are known to happen when dictating to a computer. It remembers the changes and guarantees an improved experience each time you use it. While this feature is still new to the Windows OS, it works surprisingly well on Mac.

      If the dictation app is disabled on your PC (this happens often), it is easy to enable it by going to Settings > Dictation and Speech. If the box next to the “Enhanced Dictation” is unchecked, make sure to check the box, close the settings and you are ready to go!

      No more being embarrassed for not being able to type like a machine.

      3. Switching fast on a dual-monitor.

      Get Better On PC & Mac - switching between two monitors

        Dual-monitor setup is common in offices nowadays; it brings more screen real estate into your workspace and enables you to have/do more. Programmers and designers enjoy these benefits the most.

        For example, if you have opened Adobe Photoshop on the left screen and Adobe Illustrator on the right, you will probably reach a point when you want to transfer something from one program to another, i.e. from one monitor to the other.

        All you have to do is to press the Windows button together with the (Shift) and left arrow (ß) and this will instantly switch you to the left monitor. The procedure is fairly similar when going to the right, except this time you’ll be using the right arrow key (à) and that’s it. Also, if your monitors are connected correctly, you can hold your file with the left mouse click and drag it to the other monitor. Simple as that.

        This problem has an even easier solution on a Mac. Pressing ⌘ and F1 at the same does the trick with newer generations of Mac computers. For older versions, your best bet would be to click manually on the dormant monitor before sliding back and forth.

        4. Install Windows on your Mac PC.

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        Get Better On PC & Mac - Install Windows On Mac

          Some programs don’t work as good on Windows as on Mac. Some programs are Windows-only. If you don’t want to waste your time by emulating an entirely different OS, the solution is dual boot – install Windows on your Mac. This is perfectly legal, don’t worry. Installing Windows on a Mac PC could be a difficult task for some people; if you’re willing to go for it, check out the detailed guide that will take you through the process effortlessly.

          Before you start with the installation, you will need to have an Intel-based Mac,Microsoft Windows version 8 or higher OS media or (ISO) disk image and at least 55 GB of free disk space on your Mac. Do not forget to check the system requirements for the Windows OS that you are trying to install on your Mac as the requirements will have a massive impact on both the installation process and the functionality of Windows OS.

          5. Hide and display the Start menu whenever you need it.

          Get Better On PC & Mac - hide taskbar

            You might have seen this on a colleague’s computer, and got confused. No Start menu at all? What’s wrong?

            This is just an auto-hide option that Windows offers to its users. To enable it, you just right-click on the taskbar and go to Properties. Check the “Auto-Hide Taskbar” option and hit “Apply” button. By doing this, your taskbar will “disappear” but should you need it, press the Windows key, and it will appear together with the search option. Same goes with the mouse hover.

            This option is very popular among the programming community since using this option allows programs to be fully opened without displaying the taskbar on the bottom. Of course, whenever you feel like having your taskbar at the bottom again, follow the same steps but uncheck the “Auto-Hide Taskbar” and check the “Lock the Taskbar” option.

            When it comes to Mac OS, the taskbar is, of course, known as a dock and you can hide it if you wish to. The Dock icon within the System Preferences opens up a window where you can check a box to hide the dock automatically.

            6. Preview any file.

            Get Better On PC & Mac - Previewing folders

              If you are one of the Mac owners, did you know that you can preview any type of file, even the Photoshop files and videos? Select the desired file that you wish to preview, and press and hold the spacebar. You stop previewing the file by releasing the spacebar. Feel free to preview any adjacent files by simply using your keyboard arrows while holding space.

              This feature is perfect for all of you who are into photography since finding the right one could be a bit tiresome without the preview option. This feature enables you to go quickly through the pictures and selected the ones you like and separate them from the folder that you are previewing. The same thing is available with videos, as long as the video format fulfills the requirements of this excellent feature.

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              If you’re on Windows, you’re limited to the preview pane which can be turned on in the folders settings. If you want to enable it, click on “Organize”, head to “Layout” and select the preview pane to show. Same goes for Windows versions from 7 and above.

              Get Better On PC & Mac -previewing files on Windows

                7. Force quit an app.

                Get Better On PC & Mac - force quit an app

                  At some point, all of us have faced with the “Application has stopped working” and a frozen screen, which made us try the various options just to make it go away. Struggling with this kind of a problem is common for novices, but there is a quick, professional solution.

                  One of the easiest ways to make the application force quit on Mac is to press the Command key together with the Option and Escape. By doing this, the “Force quit application window” will appear and all you have to do is to select the desired app that you wish to close and force quit it. It can be compared to the more famous Windows option which utilizes the Ctrl+Alt+Delete buttons. When you use this command on a Windows machine, Windows Task Manager will open, where you can see the apps that run at the moment and quickly find the one which misbehaves.

                  Sometimes an app can get pretty stubborn in its disobedience to close. In those cases, you can apply different, advanced ways to force quit an app on Mac. When you look into them further, you won’t have problems with stubborn apps. Overall, make sure you’re running latest drivers and official apps, which usually don’t misbehave.

                  8. Disable notification pop-ups.

                  tips for Windows & Mac - Turn off the notificaitons

                    If you are presenting something to your class or you need your PowerPoint for an important business meeting, the last thing you want is to get distracted by the meaningless notifications that always find their way to pop up in the right corner at the most unwilling time. There is an easy way to disable these annoying pop-ups. Press and hold the (⌥) button and then press the “Notification Center” icon in the menu bar.

                    Once you have done this, you will see that the icon color is changing from gray to black, which means that all notifications won’t arrive until you turn that option back on. If this didn’t work for you, and you still see some of the notifications appearing on your screen, make sure to check out a detailed guide to see if you did everything that is needed.

                    If you have a Windows OS, notifications are disabled inside All Settings > System > Notifications and Actions (Windows 10). For Windows 7, go to Control Panel > All Control Panel Items > Notification Area Icons and customize which apps you want on your notification tray.

                    9. Change brightness and volume quickly.

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                    tips for Windows & Mac - Brightness and volume

                      Another cool shortcut that is good to know is how to modify the level of brightness on your Mac quickly as well as to turn down the volume fast, as it may come handy in some situations. If you are watching some content that is way too bright press the shift key (⇧) + Option key (⌥), and a small window will pop up where you can set up the brightness. Don’t forget to look after your eyes, especially if you are pulling long hours sitting in front of a computer.

                      When it comes to the adjustment of sound on your computer, it can be quite irritating if your main speaker is out of your reach. To turn down the volume, without the need to stretch yourself across the desk, you have to press and hold the shift key (⇧) and use the scroll on your mouse. By doing this, a small sound window will appear allowing you to see and adjust the current volume level of your speakers.

                      Windows users, you have to click on a small notification tray and change the sound there. If you’re on a laptop, there are keys for both brightness and sound adjustment on the keyboard.

                      10. Create your own keyboard shortcut.

                      Creating Own Keyboarrd shortcut

                        In the world of computers, automation and shortcuts form a killer combo. Every professional computer user has them; these bad boys make us several times more productive and make our computers work exactly like we want them to. Windows users have the privilege with this possibility, as Mac users can’t enjoy it in full swing (Yosemite adds app shortcuts to the keyboard, which gets Mac users pretty close to this function).

                        In order to make your own keyboard shortcut in Windows, you’ll need a desktop shortcut first. To do this, you need to right-click and select the “Create Shortcut” option. Then, choose the app or folder you’d like to have a shortcut for, and press “Apply.” Once you’ve made sure you have the shortcut on your desktop right click on it and go to Properties. After the new window has appeared, select the “Shortcut Key” line and in that blank space put whichever key you want, for example, K button. By doing this you are ready to go, your shortcut will be created, and you can access it by pressing the [Ctrl] + [Alt] + [K] buttons.

                        This one might help a lot for you to look more tech-savvy.

                        You can stay current.

                        Computers can help us a lot if we understand them and use them properly. The key to being current and productive, is persistence, routine, and positive attitude. Nothing is that tough that you can’t beat it. Especially some operating systems. You can do it.

                        Start using these tips today and edge the competition!

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                        Dejan Kvrgic

                        Blogger, Writer

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                        Last Updated on October 15, 2019

                        How To Be Successful In Life? 13 Tips From The Most Successful People

                        How To Be Successful In Life? 13 Tips From The Most Successful People

                        What is success to you? How to be successful in life?

                        To some, when they think of success, they imagine wealth; others want power; some just want to make a positive impact on the world.

                        All of these are perfectly valid, indeed success is a concept that means different things to different people. Though no matter what success is to you, it almost certainly isn’t something will come easily.

                        There are countless guides and books to being successful, however, as success is personal and unique to each individual. The advice contained in these books can often not be relevant. Therefore following the advice of a single individual can often be unhelpful.

                        With this in mind, considering the advice of a great many people, people whose ideas of success were different both to each other, and quite possibly, to you can be a good alternative.

                        What follows is a list of thirteen of the best pieces of advice from some of the most successful people who have ever lived. If you want to learn how to be successful, these 13 tips are essential:

                        1. Think Big

                          From Michelangelo Buonarroti, Great Renaissance Artist:

                          “The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.”

                          There are few artists as influential as Michaelangelo. Today centuries after his death, his work still inspires and connects to people. His work is world famous, just think of his statue of David, or the Mural in the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican.

                          Imagine then, if he decided not to work as an artist.

                          Being a successful artist has always been extremely difficult, imagine if he decided to give up this ambition in favour of something easier?

                          Oftentimes, people often decided to put their dreams aside for something more “realistic”. To give up their dream for something easier. This quote teaches us the danger of such a point of view.
                          Instead be ambitious.

                          2. Find What You Love to Do and Do It

                            From Oprah Winfrey, Media Mogul:

                            “You know you are on the road to success if you would do your job and not be paid for it.”

                            This is a good quote to remember and think about when you’re at work.

                            Imagine being as successful as possible in your current job. Ultimately you’ll probably find yourself working extremely hard and this it will take up much of your time.

                            If it’s a job you hate, then being successful at it might only mean filling your life with something you hate to do. What’s the sense in this?

                            Instead, why not focus on doing something you love? When you’ve found what you’re passionate about, you get the motivation to keep you moving. Success at this means the fulfilment of your dreams.

                            Not sure what your passion is yet? You should learn about this Motivation Engine first.

                            Even if you’re not successful, you still filled your time with something you love to do. Many successful musicians spent years of their lives doing unpaid performances, the only reason they kept playing was because they loved to perform.

                            3. Learn How to Balance Life

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                              From Phil Knight, CEO of Nike Inc.:

                              “There is an immutable conflict at work in life and in business, a constant battle between peace and chaos. Neither can be mastered, but both can be influenced. How you go about that is the key to success.”

                              All too often, people think that to be successful, they need to make the object of their success their life.

                              If a person thinks their job will lead them to success, then they may spend countless hours per day, and well into the evening working hard.

                              However this comes at the cost of rest, your health and having an enjoyable life. Ultimately they may burn out and cease to be successful at their job anyway.

                              If success comes from having a strong social life and a good group of friends, their job may suffer; meaning that they may lose their job, and then be unable to afford going out with friends.

                              In these ways, success, as Phil Knight says above, is helped by balance. Think of it as a balance between rest and work, or work and play.

                              To achieve that balance, this Ultimate Guide to Prioritizing Your Work And Life can help you.

                              4. Do Not Be Afraid of Failure

                                From Henry Ford, Founder of Ford Motors:

                                “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”

                                There is a story, it’s unconfirmed whether it actually happened, yet the message within is none the less true:

                                Thomas Edison inventing the lightbulb was the result of several hundred failed attempts. In an interview, he was asked “How do you feel after all of your failed attempts?”

                                His response was great, “I didn’t fail, I learned hundreds of ways not to invent the lightbulb”

                                He saw each “failure” as a lesson. From that lesson he learned what won’t work, and also might work instead.

                                Each failed attempt, each rejection, were key steps on his path to success. It is easy to feel like you should give up after a failure. But perhaps in that failure is a lesson.

                                Pay attention to your failures, study them. Perhaps then you’ll learn how to succeed.

                                If you find it difficult to fight your fear of failure, here’s a guide for you: Why You Have the Fear of Failure (And How to Conquer It Step-By-Step)

                                5. Have an Unwavering Resolution to Succeed

                                  From Colonel Sanders, Founder of KFC:

                                  “I made a resolve then that I was going to amount to something if I could. And no hours, nor amount of labor, nor amount of money would deter me from giving the best that there was in me. And I have done that ever since, and I win by it. I know.”

                                  This, in many ways relates to the above quote about learning from your failures.

                                  It’s the easiest thing in the world to give up from a failure. The only way to push on is if you have the true burning desire to succeed, to not be moved or dissuaded from your goals.

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                                  If you are not truly dedicated towards success, then each failure will hurt more, each set back will slow you down.

                                  Success is hard; without the unwavering desire to succeed, this difficulty may seem insurmountable. With the desire, it is merely an obstacle to go through.

                                  6. Be a Person of Action

                                    From Leonardo da Vinci, Renaissance Genius:

                                    “It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”

                                    Though it was said hundreds of years ago, it works just as much today as it ever had. It applies to literally any successful person.

                                    Think about it, picture someone like William Shakespeare:

                                    When we think of the time he lived in, we think of the time in a way shaped by him. When we think of Renaissance era Italy, we think of Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci. Or think about the present day, Bill Gates or Steve Jobs. Our current way of life would simply be incomparably different if they didn’t accomplish what they did.

                                    You’re probably reading this article on a device by a company that they either founded or companies influenced by them.

                                    All these figures were proactive, they saw ways to do things differently and did them. If they let the world shape them, then they’d simply fit into the background. Instead they shaped the world.

                                    Applying this to you?

                                    Don’t be afraid of going outside the norm. If you can think of a better way to do something, do it that way. If you fail, try again.

                                    7. Cultivate Positive Relationships

                                      From Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of America: “

                                      The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people.”

                                      The best leaders and some of the most influential people (and Theodore Roosevelt is one of the best leaders and one of the most influential people to have lived) were not those who caused commotions, who fought with people or disregarded people; but were people who were friendly to those around them.

                                      People liked them. They wanted them to do well.

                                      This is key to good leadership.

                                      It’s logical. If someone likes you, they want to help you; if you give them a suggestion, they’ll gladly follow through with it.

                                      But if someone doesn’t like you, they may either refuse to help or actively get in your way.

                                      What’s more, it’s always a good idea to cultivate good relationships. You can never tell who will prove to become someone who’ll be able to help you in a big way, or even be a good and supportive friend.

                                      As such, help people and they may help you; and be good to people, and they my be good to you.

                                      8. Don’t Be Afraid of Introducing New Ideas

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                                        From Mark Twain, Famed Author:

                                        “A person with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds.”

                                        It is an unfortunate truth that those with the boldest ideas are often disregarded.

                                        Most of us are taught from an early age to think and do things similarly to everyone else. This can be great to fill an existing role. But to truly do things differently (and all successful people did things differently), you need to think differently.

                                        If you have a new idea, don’t throw it away because it’s new and different; instead, celebrate it. Your strange new idea might one day be the one that leads you to success.

                                        9. Believe in Your Capacity to Succeed

                                          From Walter Disney, Founder of Walt Disney Company:

                                          “If you can dream it, you can do it.”

                                          Success has to be something you can imagine yourself achieving.

                                          It is possible that you will come across those who doubt you and your ability to succeed. You must not become one of these people because the moment you cease believing and dreaming is the moment these dreams fall away.

                                          Keep dreaming!

                                          10. Always Maintain a Positive Mental Attitude

                                            From Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of America:

                                            “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”

                                            Like the above quote says, you need to trust in your ability to succeed. This is the only way to cultivate the right mindset.

                                            Replace negative thoughts with the positive ones. You need to approach problems, not as obstacles stopping you, but merely tasks that need to be completed for you to keep going.

                                            If you stay positive and think like this, setbacks won’t affect you so much, people’s doubts won’t impact you and even the biggest obstacles will seem like minor problems.

                                            However with the wrong mindset of doubt, you’ll be much easier to stop.

                                            11. Don’t Let Discouragement Stop You from Pressing On

                                              From Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of America:

                                              “Let no feeling of discouragement prey upon you, and in the end you are sure to succeed.”

                                              It is an unfortunate fact of human nature — all of us in some way, doubt ourselves. This can be made far worse if others doubt us too.

                                              When surrounded by doubts, giving up can actually seem like a good idea.

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                                              Don’t pay attention to the doubts. If you are discouraged, ignore it.

                                              If this discouragement moves into your mind and you begin to doubt yourself. It is important to ignore this too.

                                              This is How Self Doubt Keeps You Stuck and How to Overcome It

                                              12. Be Willing to Work Hard

                                                From JC Penny, Founder of JC Penney Inc.:

                                                “Unless you are willing to drench yourself in your work beyond the capacity of the average man, you are just not cut out for positions at the top.”

                                                You might have heard the quote that “success is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration” or you may have heard about the 10,000 hours idea.

                                                Whichever way you frame it, they say one thing:

                                                True success comes from work.

                                                You’ll never become successful if you don’t work towards your goal in life and keep working towards it.

                                                Check out this article and you’ll understand Why Hard Work Beats Talent.

                                                13. Be Brave Enough to Follow Your Intuition

                                                  From Steve Jobs, Co-founder of Apple Inc.:

                                                  “Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

                                                  In ancient Greece, there was a group of Oracles who lived in Delphi. Everyone who needed advice or to know their future visited them, from the poorest of society to kings. Above the doorway of the temple were the words “know thyself”.

                                                  If you strongly believe and desire something, chances are that you already have an idea how to get there. If not, you may naturally know what things will help you and what things will slow you down.

                                                  It’s like how your body can detect danger even when things seem safe.

                                                  Ultimately then, you need to trust your own instincts.

                                                  Final Thoughts

                                                  What you might have noticed is that many of the above lessons are similar — most are about developing the right state of mind. This clearly suggests that the key to achieving success, in whatever you wish, comes down to the way you approach it mentally.

                                                  Moreover, no matter what stage of life you’re at now, you can still make a difference and pursue success. You can make resetting your life possible when you do this: How to Start Over and Reboot Your Life When It Seems Too Late

                                                  More to Help You Succeed in Life

                                                  Featured photo credit: Ryan Wong via unsplash.com

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