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Problems Keeping Up? 10 Apps to Make You Highly Organized

Problems Keeping Up? 10 Apps to Make You Highly Organized

It can be problematic to get organized and keep track of all the expenses and responsibilities. Sure, you can always write everything down, but there are more sophisticated and efficient methods to do all this. Today, you can use apps for various purposes, and they will help you organize, track your progress, and they even help you do your job or daily tasks more efficiently.

Of course, not every app is intended for this purpose, and even those that are can sometimes fail to live up to their words. Since this is the case, I have compiled a list of apps that I am using, or that I used at some point, in order to give you an idea of just how helpful some apps can be. Here are 10 apps that can help you get highly organized.

1. Clear

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    Clear is simple, but brilliant. It is a to-do list app, and it helps you keep up with all of your tasks. Basically, you create to-do lists and separate them into categories, in the order of which tasks you want to prioritize and which tasks can wait. The app will remind you of your duties and their urgency.

    It really simple and fun to play with, since it has a user-friendly interface and it is available for iOS, OS X, and Apple watch. So, if you plan to get a new iPhone make sure you get ‘Clear’ and put that gadget to a good use.

    2. Basecamp

    image02

      If you work as a project manager, or if you want to get organized with people inside the same household, you can use Basecamp. Basecamp is great for creating projects, providing elaboration on what needs to be done, and for task distribution. It is also free to use for the first month or so, meaning that you can try it out and see if it works for you.

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      It also has a space called Campfires, where you can all communicate and collaborate whenever you are tackling a more complex project. It is overall a really easy and fun tool to use. Many small business owners opt for Basecamp, since it allows you to keep track of all the projects you have done in the past, so whenever you need something you can access it with ease.

      3. Toggl

      image03

        This app is used for various types of time tracking, and there are two important things that the developers were able to pull off: they made it versatile for tracking just about anything and they made it amazingly simple. These are the two things that make Toggl such a valuable tool. It is as simple as typing in what you are doing at the moment, and when you are ready you just press the start button.

        When you are done you simply press stop and the time tracking halts. Additionally, Toggl allows users to get reports easily with its simple reporting interface. It is possible to report on basically anything you want. For example, if you tracked your work for some client, you can give them professional reports on the progress of your project without having to go through any extra steps or complicated procedures.

        4. Workflow

        image04

          Workflow is an app designed for creating automation workflows in a visual fashion. You don’t need to know anything about URLs, as this app is all about drag and drop. It supports unlimited actions that you can include within a certain workflow. With this app, you can make your job so much easier, as it can be made simple or complicated if you prefer to use it that way.

          This app is great for iOS users who use a lot of different apps on their devices, as it bridges them and puts them all into one control line where you can perform actions without messy workarounds. If you rely on your mobile device a lot, this app will help you save time and be more efficient.

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          5. Dragon Dictation

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            Dragon Dictation is voice recognition app. This app can recognize your voice and do various different actions with it. It can transcribe it into text, you can perform actions on social networks, send messages etc. This is a great app that can help you perform multiple actions at the same time.

            In case you need your hands to be free for doing something else, while at the same time wanting to memorize your thoughts or remind someone of something important, Dragon Dictation is a perfect tool for you. You can tell the app to go through spreadsheets, reports or any other documents with a simple order. For busy people who need to save a lot of their time, this app is a godsend.

            6. Expensify

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              Tracking expenses can prove to be a difficult challenge for many of us. Especially if our job position requires creating expense reports for someone in our company. With it, you can take quick snapshots of any receipts or bills as soon as you receive them and this is how you will make sure that you don’t forget to add any expenses.

              It is possible to sort your reports any way you see fit, by names, email or something else and it doesn’t matter if that report is closed, open, processed or being approved. On top of being an excellent expense tracking app, it can also track your time spent on projects or the mileage you’ve traveled. It can be integrated with all of the best accounting programs to help you become an efficient business expert.

              7. Wunderlist

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                This is yet another to-do list app which can include notes, reminders and generally help you organize yourself properly each day so that you get everything done. There are so many similar apps like Wunderlist, but the fact that it comes so naturally and works without any glitch is the reason this app is on this list today.

                No matter if you are going for a quick visit to the grocery store, or you are planning a big birthday party, Wunderlist will help you stay on top of your to-dos. With Wunderlist you can create lists and share them with others if you are working on something together. Collaborating on tasks with Wunderlist is incredibly easy, as it has options for creating tasks, attaching files, leaving important comments and many other functions.

                8. Trello

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                  Trello is also a project management app that emphasizes visual use. This is a cloud-based software that offers a collaborative platform where you can manage various projects. It doesn’t matter if you want to use it for business or personal tasks, Trello can handle it. It works with cards which you can customize for ages. You simply drag and drop them where you like and add the information you need.

                  With Trello it is possible to take care of projects no matter what their size. This is an especially good project management tool for collaborating on projects where there are many sub-teams and sub-tasks that need to be differentiated. It has a “flag” feature that allows users to mark what is theirs, so that there are no confusions in handling tasks.

                  9. Pocket

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                    Pocket is an app that is used for quick bookmarking of things you would like to dedicate your attention to later. With its ability to sync with 500 other different apps, Pocket is truly amazing. For example, let’s say you are reading an article and someone interrupts you.

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                    Instead of searching for it again later when on your mobile phone, you can open it instantly, as Pocket will keep it synced. When you put something in your Pocket app, you can find it on all of the devices that are synced. Adding bookmarklet and saving pages is super simple, just two clicks required.

                    Pocket has some amazing features. For example, there are a lot of websites that offer good content, but it has horrifying visuals. Pocket has a feature that removes all the ads and sidebars and leaves your content naked for you to read undistracted.

                    10. Mindnode

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                      Ever heard of mind-mapping? It may sound like epic fantasy, but it’s a proven method for organizing information visually and brainstorming brand new ideas. The concept of long vertical lists has been removed and all the information is organized in a colored web. You start the whole process by inserting the general goal in the center of your screen. After that, you attach connections, add important notes and separate some smaller tasks that need to be done.

                      When you set up things this way, you will have an easier job in finding logical connections or figuring out some problematics that revolve around your idea. Furthermore, the visibility might show you something you haven’t seen before and helps you create better ideas.

                      Conclusion

                      These are some of the best apps for optimizing your organization. In my opinion, this is everything you need. However, you should make sure to learn to use them properly and avoid getting sucked into making your app usage counter-productive. A lot of people start overthinking and use some apps for tasks that they can complete without them. This creates clutter and time loss, and you should be careful that this doesn’t happen to you as well.

                      Featured photo credit: https://unsplash.com/photos/NtXEet79qfI via pexels.com

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                      Aleksandar Ilic

                      Blogger, Social Media Butterfly, Guitarist

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                      Last Updated on October 17, 2018

                      7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways to Improve Memory

                      7 Natural (And Highly Effective) Ways to Improve Memory

                      How is your memory? Is your cognitive function as strong as you’d like it to be?

                      If not, then you’re definitely going to be interested in the memory improvement tips I’ll be sharing with you in this article.

                      Despite what you might think – or have been told – improving your ability to recall information is certainly possible. You just need to know the right ways to do it. (Don’t worry, as you won’t need to make any significant lifestyle changes.)

                      So how to improve memory? Let’s dive straight into the first of seven easy ways to improve your memory significantly.

                      1. Meditate

                      We live in a world of non-stop, 24/7 information. It’s like a waterfall that’s endlessly pouring news, data, facts and figures into our conscious minds.

                      Unfortunately, our brains are not designed to absorb this tremendous amount of information. It’s no wonder then, that most people struggle to remember information and recall things.

                      Even if you believe you have a good memory and are comfortable with multi-tasking, you’ll also be aware that there’s only so much information your brain can process at one time. And research suggests that the more information and distractions, the harder it is for you to transfer information to your long-term memory.[1]

                      Fortunately, meditation can help you out.

                      Even if you just meditate for 10 minutes per day, you’ll boost your ability to focus, which in turn, will make it easier for you to remember important facts.

                      If you need help in shifting into a meditative state, I recommend trying an app like Headspace – which can assist you to achieve this in a convenient and structured way.

                      And don’t forget, meditation doesn’t just have to be closing your eyes and sitting in a lotus position. Some people prefer to simply take a short walk in nature. This clears and calms their mind, and still provides the all-important boost to their focus.

                      2. Get plenty of sleep

                      If you’re sleep deprived or have not been sleeping well, then I’m guessing you’re not remembering well either. This is because sleep and memory are intimately connected.

                      If you have a busy life and regularly find yourself not getting enough sleep, then this will negatively impact your cognitive abilities – including your memory.

                      How much sleep should you be getting?

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                      Well, according to the National Sleep Foundation, you need a minimum of seven to nine hours of sleep per night. If you get this amount of sleep regularly, then within just a few days, you’ll see a tangible improvement to your ability to remember and recall things.

                      Now, I’ll be honest with you, maintaining a proper sleep cycle is not always easy (especially when the latest Netflix series has just been released!). But if you care about improving your short-term and long-term ability to remember things, then it’s critical that you try to get at least the recommended amount of sleep every night.

                      Are there ways to hack the sleep cycle?

                      Yes, there are.

                      Try these three things:

                      • Have a fixed bedtime (preferably before 10pm)
                      • Don’t eat too late
                      • Make sure your bedroom is as dark as possible

                      Sleeping is a precious activity. It regenerates your body, clears your mind, and helps with the storing and retrieval of information.

                      However, don’t sleep just yet, as I want to tell you about another great way to increase memory…

                      3. Challenge your brain

                      When was the last time you challenged your brain?

                      I don’t mean challenged in the sense of overeating or undersleeping. I’m referring to stretching your mental capabilities through things like crossword puzzles, Sudoku and memory games.

                      To expand your memory bank, and to make your recall razor-sharp, you need to continually challenge your brain.

                      Feedback from Lifehack readers such as yourself, has suggested that brain training apps are a super-effective way of doing this. Used regularly, these apps can enhance your focus, attention span, problem-thinking ability and memory.

                      There are hundreds of these apps available (most of them for free), but I recommend starting out with one of the big three:

                      • Peak (Android/iOS, free, 10 million+ downloads)
                      • Lumosity (Android/iOS, free, 10 million+ downloads)
                      • Elevate (Android/iOS, free, 5 million+ downloads)

                      If you normally spend a chunk of your week playing computer games, then instead of shooting and killing your enemies, why not let some of them live – while you put your attention into boosting your brain power!

                      Challenging your brain will strengthen your neural pathways and enhance your mental abilities. But don’t just take my word for it, try one of the apps above and see the positive benefits for yourself.

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                      4. Take more breaks

                      When I think back to my days as a budding entrepreneur, I distinctively remember working all the hours under the sun – and many under the moon too!

                      At that time, I believed that breaks were for the weak, and to become wealthy and successful, I needed to shed blood, sweat and tears.

                      However, I was wrong.

                      Taking regular breaks is the best way to keep yourself productive, creative and alive to opportunities. It’s also the best way to learn new information.

                      Let me explain.

                      Typically, when studying lots of new information, most people will spend hours reading it – in an attempt to learn and remember the content as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, they’ve overlooked something.

                      Namely, extended study sessions are rarely a good thing, as your ability to retain information naturally declines after a certain period of time.

                      It’s similar to physical exercise. You wouldn’t attempt to train vigorously for four hours in a row. Instead, you’d take regular breaks to give your lungs, heart and muscles adequate time to recover. Failing to do this will result in muscle cramps and overexertion.

                      It’s the same with your brain. If you overload it with information, you’ll suffer from mental fatigue.

                      What’s the answer?

                      Make sure you take regular breaks when learning new information. I recommend at least a 10-minute break every hour. (You may also want to take a look at the Pomodoro Method.)

                      If you don’t want to be as regimented as that, then take breaks as soon as you find yourself losing the ability to focus on the new material. Your brain will thank you – and your learning aptitude will move up a level.

                      5. Learn a new skill

                      I love this quote, as it’s 100% true – but frequently overlooked:

                      “Learning never exhausts the mind.” – Leonardo da Vinci

                      From my experience of helping to develop the careers of dozens of Lifehack employees, I can definitively say that participating in meaningful and purposeful activities stimulates the mind. It also reduces stress and enhances health and well-being.

                      Let me give you an example of this:

                      Imagine you work for a global financial institution in one of their call centers. You take over 100 calls a day – many of them complaints. When you started the job a few months back, you were excited to be in full-time employment and working for a household name.

                      Unfortunately, your initial enthusiasm quickly turned into frustration.

                      The endless complaint calls began to take their toll on you. And the supervisors irritated you too, as they were far too interested in micro-managing you – rather than letting you work in your own way.

                      Now, in the story above, the ending could be that you put up with a job you didn’t like, and led a dull and frustrated working life for years and years. However, an alternative ending is this: you channeled your dissatisfaction in to learning a new skill (computer coding). It took you a year or two to get up to speed, but it allowed you to successfully upgrade your career – and the ongoing learning made the call centre job much more bearable.

                      Clearly, learning new skills gives you impetus, focus and something to aim for. Your brain loves to learn, and you should tap into this by always seeking our new information. And when learning becomes a habit, you’ll find your ability to remember and recall things effortlessly, becomes a habit too.

                      6. Start working out

                      If you’re not already working out regularly, then here’s another reason to do so:

                      Exercising for 20-30 minutes three times a week will improve your long-term memory.

                      Regular exercise increases blood flow in your body and supplies the brain with extra oxygen and nutrients. And a well-nourished brain is a well-functioning brain!

                      “But I just don’t have the time?,” I hear you say.

                      Not a problem.

                      A research has shown that a daily burst of 60 seconds of high-intensity exercise, offered many of the benefits of the longer exercise routines.[2] So, if you’re short on time – now you know what to do.

                      Interested in getting started?

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                      Here are five different ways that will help you work out:

                      • Join a gym
                      • Join a sports team
                      • Buy a bike
                      • Take up hiking
                      • Dance to your favorite music

                      7. Eat healthier foods

                      I’m sure you’ve heard the expression: “You are what you eat.”

                      This applies to your brain too.

                      The food that you eat helps determine your brain’s capacity to store and recall information. A poor diet (think junk food + soda!) harms not just your physical health, but your mental health too.

                      Fortunately, there are several foods that are especially good for your brain and your memory. These include: blueberries, celery and dark chocolate. But anything high in antioxidants will have a positive effect on your brain and memory.

                      Conversely, highly-processed foods and those loaded with sugar will have a negative impact on your memory. This is due to them providing insufficient nutrients for your brain – leading you to easily suffer from mental fatigue.

                      Want to be mentally healthy? Then eat and drink an abundance of these for brain health:

                      • Turmeric – helps new brain cells grown
                      • Broccoli – protects the brain against damage
                      • Nuts – improves memory
                      • Green tea – enhances brain performance, memory and focus[3]
                      • Fish oilfish oil supplements can increase your brain power

                      Here’re more brain food options that improve memory!

                      Final thoughts

                      I sincerely hope these seven memory boosting ways that I’ve covered in this article will be of help to you.

                      You don’t need to implement them all. I suggest just trying the ones that appeal to you.

                      But, if you’re serious about dramatically improving your memory, then make a start right now on adopting one or more of the ways I’ve suggested. I’m confident you won’t regret it.

                      Featured photo credit: Eric Ward via unsplash.com

                      Reference

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