Your mobile phone is probably the most customizable thing you possess. You can turn it into a media storage and broadcasting tool, a digital playground, a mobile office, a planner and task manager — into anything you want, just by selecting the right apps. Digital stores have apps galore and there’s no way you can navigate this sea of software without a clear understanding of what you are looking for.
Whether you’re a working parent trying “to have it all” or a stay-at-home mom or dad who tries to provide their child with all possible care and comfort, the guidelines below will be most helpful in shaping your own digital toolbox for better parenting.
Multitasking is parental skill #1, and if you are an absent-minded person, you will have noticed how awkward it can be to forget about something important, like meeting with a friend or your parents’ wedding anniversary. Sleep deprivation, which is each parent’s permanent companion, makes it even worse.
Luckily, you can always have a memory aid in your pocket, and unlike old-fashioned notebooks, it won’t sit there quietly when you are forgetting something. Organizer apps abound in both the Play Market and App Store, and you may choose the one whose features will fit your particular needs like a glove — the shared lists of the Cozi Family Organizer, the location-based reminders of Google Keep, or other handy options based on your preference.
News + Social Media
Another skill parents should master is making the best of their time. To get all up to date during your 5-minute downtime while your little one is meticulously studying a shape sorter and learning the hard way that it’s not always possible to round the square, you will need apps that gather all your news and social media in one place.
You may also find news app to be a great time savior. In essence, what they do is crawl the internet sniffing out the content matching your interests or relevant to your area, providing you with a juicy digest of only the best. Some of them, such as Pocket, for instance, allow you to save articles for later if you have no time to read them right away — no more coffee boiling over because of some absorbing reading.
To win you some time, having games on your phone or tablet is absolutely indispensable. Not only do children love them, but they can learn from them. Learning from play is a natural thing for little kids and animal cubs alike. Of course, you shouldn’t leave your child to play on your phone for hours or you may find eventually they no longer know what to do without it. However, to deal with a wiggly toddler on a bus or to quell tantrums in public places, having a couple of educational games on your phone equals in power to a magic wand.
It goes without saying that prior to giving your phone to your kid, you should first secure the device with parental controls to prevent awkward situations. If your child is old enough to have their own gadget, you’d better check out some parental monitoring software reviews and choose among them to your liking.
The web is just as multifaceted as life itself, and you do not want your child to be acquainted with the ugly sides of those two before they can tell good from bad. Unfortunately, we cannot eliminate inappropriate content, cyberbullying, and predators completely, but at least we can make sure that neither of those will harm our children.
A varied and well-balanced diet is paramount for both raising healthy children and staying fueled and energetic ourselves to provide proper care for them. On the other hand, such a diet takes a lot of planning and creativity.
If you don’t have the time to go through cooking blogs in search of inspiration, then meal-planning apps are all you need. Not only will they propose a diverse menu and recipes, they will also form your grocery lists and even provide some useful tips on the best bargains and stores that have all ingredients in one place. If you are short on time or energy, you can always opt for food delivery services, such as Seamless or Munchery.
Let’s be honest. With all the responsibility, decision making, extreme multitasking, and 24/7 duty, parenting is one of the highest stress level jobs in the world. To keep sanity and balance intact, you’d better have one or two apps to help you relax and de-stress always at hand. Again, this is a matter of taste — what you find the most soothing and helpful, whether that’s sounds of a natural environment, mind mapping, yoga, or white noise. The point is you definitely need something to restore inner peace and tranquility, and there is no reason why this “something” cannot sit in your pocket.
Now that you are equipped with this checklist, a better quality of life is just a download away.
Featured photo credit: Esther Vargas/Flickr via flickr.com