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5 Lesser Known But Powerful Tools to Increase your Productivity

5 Lesser Known But Powerful Tools to Increase your Productivity

In this day and age, we all need some help with our productivity – be it for business or for personal use. This is why we see a new tool coming up to increase your productivity every other day.

I have been working with such tools and having used a large number of productivity enhancing tools, I have decided to go with these 5 tools. The first 3 tools will help you increase productivity with your business’ social media management and the last two are for your personal use.

1. Recur Post

The first tool, and my personal favorite of all 5 ,in the list, is Recur Post. It allows you to create libraries of your evergreen content and then schedule it to post on your social networks in a recurring manner. For instance, you can add 30 of your best blog posts into a library and then ask it to post one update daily on your Twitter account. This takes care of keeping your Twitter account updated forever and posts only get repeated after 30 days.

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You can create multiple libraries such as “My Blogs”, “Other People’s Content”, “Witty Quotes” etc. Each library can have your evergreen social updates and you can then schedule when and where should an update be posted.

Once an update has been posted on a social platform, it will sit at the end of the queue to be posted again once everything else has been posted.

2. Text Free App

The second tool is actually a suite of tools. The best tool in this suite, in my opinion, is TweeLinks. It allows you to enter a few screen names (Twitter usernames) and it will tell you which links are shared by those people.

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This is good for outreach with influencers. If you see someone sharing a lot of links from one or two websites then you can use that information to connect with them. It gives you an ice breaker to start the conversation.

They also have a tool that can tell you the most popular Tweets around a topic. You could use those Tweets to schedule your next Tweets.

3. Promise or Pay

Promise or Pay is a great idea to get you motivated. Are you slacking on your promises to go to the gym, or to take your wife out on a dinner date? Then you can use a little bit of social pressure on yourself with Promise or Pay.

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You commit to pay a certain amount to charity if you do not perform a task. You then invite your social contacts to commit some money towards your success. They will stay updated with your progress and you will now know that they are all watching you, so the pressure makes you move.

In the end, you pay money to a charity of your choice so it is a noble cause as well.

4. Eyecare 20 20 20

If you are in front of a bright screen for long hours then your eyes could use some help. Doctors recommend that you should be taking regular breaks at 20 minutes each.

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There is a 20-20-20 rule that says you should look at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes. However, it is not easy to keep track of time so this app helps you a lot. You can download it on your Android as well as iPhone, iPad etc.

5. f.lux

If you are a Mac user, you probably already know how Macs adjust the brightness based on the amount of light around them. This helps your eyes a lot with reducing strain.

If you are not a Mac user you can download f.lux app to get the same advantage. F.lux app makes your computer screen adapt to the surrounding light. When you are in a room with low light, it will make your computer screen look warm and during the day it makes it look like sunlight. It’s a free app and is available for all platforms, including Mac, Windows and Linux.

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Mukesh Agarwal

Professional Blogger

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Last Updated on March 23, 2021

Manage Your Energy so You Can Manage Your Time

Manage Your Energy so You Can Manage Your Time

One of the greatest ironies of this age is that while various gadgets like smartphones and netbooks allow you to multitask, it seems that you never manage to get things done. You are caught in the busyness trap. There’s just too much work to do in one day that sometimes you end up exhausted with half-finished tasks.

The problem lies in how to keep our energy level high to ensure that you finish at least one of your most important tasks for the day. There’s just not enough hours in a day and it’s not possible to be productive the whole time.

You need more than time management. You need energy management

1. Dispel the idea that you need to be a “morning person” to be productive

How many times have you heard (or read) this advice – wake up early so that you can do all the tasks at hand. There’s nothing wrong with that advice. It’s actually reeks of good common sense – start early, finish early. The thing is that technique alone won’t work with everyone. Especially not with people who are not morning larks.

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I should know because I was once deluded with the idea that I will be more productive if I get out of bed by 6 a.m. Like most of you Lifehackers, I’m always on the lookout for productivity hacks because I have a lot of things in my plate. I’m working full time as an editor for a news agency, while at the same time tending to my side business as a content marketing strategist. I’m also a travel blogger and oh yeah, I forgot, I also have a life.

I read a lot of productivity books and blogs looking for ways to make the most of my 24 hours. Most stories on productivity stress waking up early. So I did – and I was a major failure in that department – both in waking up early and finishing early.

2. Determine your “peak hours”

Energy management begins with looking for your most productive hours in a day. Getting attuned to your body clock won’t happen instantly but there’s a way around it.

Monitor your working habits for one week and list down the time when you managed to do the most work. Take note also of what you feel during those hours – do you feel energized or lethargic? Monitor this and you will find a pattern later on.

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My experiment with being a morning lark proved that ignoring my body clock and just doing it by disciplining myself to wake up before 8 a.m. will push me to be more productive. I thought that by writing blog posts and other reports in the morning that I would be finished by noon and use my lunch break for a quick gym session. That never happened. I was sleepy, distracted and couldn’t write jack before 10 a.m.

In fact that was one experiment that I shouldn’t have tried because I should know better. After all, I’ve been writing for a living for the last 15 years, and I have observed time and again that I write more –and better – in the afternoon and in evenings after supper. I’m a night owl. I might as well, accept it and work around it.

Just recently, I was so fired up by a certain idea that – even if I’m back home tired from work – I took out my netbook, wrote and published a 600-word blog post by 11 p.m. This is a bit extreme and one of my rare outbursts of energy, but it works for me.

3. Block those high-energy hours

Once you have a sense of that high-energy time, you can then mold your schedule so that your other less important tasks will be scheduled either before or after this designated productive time.

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Block them out in your calendar and use the high-energy hours for your high priority tasks – especially those that require more of your mental energy and focus. You also need to use these hours to any task that will bring you closer to you life’s goal.

If you are a morning person, you might want to schedule most business meetings before lunch time as it’s important to keep your mind sharp and focused. But nothing is set in stone. Sometimes you have to sacrifice those productive hours to attend to other personal stuff – like if you or your family members are sick or if you have to attend your son’s graduation.

That said, just remember to keep those productive times on your calendar. You may allow for some exemptions but stick to that schedule as much as possible.

There’s no right or wrong way of using this energy management technique because everything depends on your own personal circumstances. What you need to remember is that you have to accept what works for you – and not what other productivity gurus say you should do.

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Understanding your own body clock is the key to time management. Without it, you end up exhausted chasing a never-ending cycle of tasks and frustrations.

Featured photo credit: Collin Hardy via unsplash.com

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