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How We Lose Billions Of Hours And Money On Social Apps Without Even Noticing It

How We Lose Billions Of Hours And Money On Social Apps Without Even Noticing It

The time and money we spend on social apps is shocking, and here’s the truth revealed:

People spend 1.15 billion hours each month on playing mobile games.

Games rank second behind social media activity in terms of time spent on devices according to a survey conducted in 2016.[1]

On average, we spend 2 hours on social media apps per day, which add up to 5 years and 4 months over a lifetime.[2]

In case you’re wondering, you can actually fly to the moon and back to Earth for 32 times with that time!!

And it’s not just the time that we’re losing.

Social apps gain millions of dollars from us every day.

Many of us don’t mind spending a dollar or 2 on mobile apps—multiple dollars, on multiple apps.

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For instance, one of the top-grossing games in the App Store Pokemon Go, earns as much as $2.3 million per day; while another popular game, Candy Crush, makes $1.1 million a day.[3]

Now you’re probably a little concerned about the time and money you’ve been spending on apps, so it would be a good idea to look at why this is happening, and what you can do about it.

We spend a lot of time on our mobile because we feel bored easily and our phone is too handy.

Boredom doesn’t make us happy and it’s natural that we want to get rid of it no matter what, and impulsive behaviour, such as playing with the phone, is our way of doing it.

Our phone provides us with a comforting escape from boredom—endless scrolling might be mind-numbing but it’s still better than doing nothing, and we just can’t stop.

The reason why social media apps seem so attractive is that they give us (a bit of) the excitement we crave when we’re bored. On top of that is their convenience, since we always have our phones nearby and unlocking them only takes 1 second.

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But do you know that playing with the phones can’t really kill our boredom?

We thought playing with the phones could keep us busy and happy, but science says the opposite:[4]

A research by Temple University shows that mindlessly playing with our phones actually eats away at our patience as well as self-control. The more time we spend on mobile apps, the more easily we feel bored. We also end up getting more impulsive, which means we become less able to resist our phones.

The more time we spend on mobile apps, the more difficult to resist them. The boredom in us simply will never be killed.

Although it is normal for us to reach out to our phones when we feel bored, it’s still possible to avoid the downward spiral. You just need to pay attention to how you spend your time.

Here are several tips that can help you detox from social media addiction.

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Challenge yourself not to check your phone during idle time.

You can also try to train yourself to be patient. Set some rules for yourself about using social media apps[5]. For instance, challenge yourself to not check your phone when waiting for the bus or queueing up at Starbucks. Be comfortable with a little boredom. It’s just a few minutes, anyway.

Hide your social apps or games in a folder on the last page of your phone, and mute their notifications.

Stopping once you’ve started is so much harder than not starting at all.[6] If you don’t open the app in the first place, you won’t have to worry about it.

What you can do is to mute the notifications of your addicted apps, put them into a folder, and drag the folder to the last page of your phone. So when you unlock your phone and arrive on the first page, it’s not so easy to access them.

Try to keep the temptations away is a good way to stop yourself from impulsively looking at the apps. Out of sight, out of mind.

Actively explore for more interesting activities that go beyond your phone.

You have to realize that you have a life outside of your Facebook, Instagram, etc., and that Candy Crush is not the only fun thing you can do.

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Go out with friends and talk to them instead of posting on their Walls; read books instead of checking Instagram stories; or try baking desserts instead of crushing candies…and more to go on the list.

When you learn to appreciate and enjoy the interesting things in the real world, you won’t go back to your phone that often any more.

Keep in mind that you don’t have to cut mobile apps out of your life entirely. Just be careful why you’re using them.

Ask yourself: do I really have fun playing with my phone, or am I just bored? Can I do something else instead and have a great time?

Reference

More by this author

Wen Shan

Proud Philosophy grad. Based in HK.

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Published on October 9, 2018

Evernote vs OneNote: Which Improves Your Productivity Better?

Evernote vs OneNote: Which Improves Your Productivity Better?

Note-taking is useful in helping improve your memory and increase your productivity at work. By writing down notes, you have something tangible you can refer back to, remember what needs to be done, and regain control of your work throughout the day.

There are thousands of different note-taking apps you can use on your desktop or mobile device. The two most popular are Evernote and Microsoft OneNote because they are incredibly efficient and effective that each has a following of extremely loyal users and advocates.

So if it comes to Evernote vs OneNote, how do they improve productivity?

An overview of Evernote and OneNote

First, an introduction to the two platforms. Evernote is an app that lets you store content, take down notes, write lists, and organize all of them. While these are stored in Notebooks, the whole concept behind this productivity app is more like a Universal Inbox where you can save everything you’ve collected so you can quickly find it when you need them through the use of tags.

Microsoft’s OneNote, on the other hand, works very much like a digital version of the notebooks you used to carry around in school. Aside from storing all your notes and different types of content you’ve collected, you can also organize them into sections, pages, and containers.

Each of these apps offers their users a host of features to help them improve their productivity and memory. Also, because no app is perfect, each also has their strengths and limitations.

To get a better idea of which app will be your best choice, we’ll be comparing the two based on three key features most used by their users: collecting information, note-taking, and mobility.

Collecting information

Both the OneNote and Evernote come with their own web clipper extension that allows you to quickly collect and store information from different websites as you find them.

Both give you the option to choose whether you’d like to save the entire web page as is, a simplified version without the ads, or just a section of the page. You can also add some notes before saving them to make it easier for you to remember why you “clipped” that particular resource.

Since OneNote gives you more structure to organize your content, its web clipper allows you to choose not just which notebook to save the details, but also what section within the notebook.

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    Source: OneNote.com

    Evernote gives you the option to add tags to your web clippings before you save it, so it’s easier for you to search for it later.

    Premium users get access to Evernote’s Related Results feature located in its Options section. When you search on Google, Evernote will launch a secondary search that will show all the notes related to the keyword you used in searching for information.

      Source: Zapier.com

      This feature, according to Jeremy Skillings, President of Youcanbefound.com, is beneficial because it lets you know what information you already have stored in your notes.

      “In some cases whenever I do my research, I find out through this feature that I already have the exact information I need stored in my Evernote account. That alone cuts back a significant amount of the time I spend on projects.”

      Note-taking

      Both of these productivity apps allow you to create and format your notes to create rich documents. Among these features include changing the font size and color, adding tables, and inserting media files.

      Evernote’s note-taking features are very similar to a Word document in that it’s very structured concerning how you input your notes.

        Professionals who need to be able to build and access well-structured docs in the field make up much of Evernote’s loyal fanbase. One such 2-year user in the real estate field, Anthony Gilbert of RealFX.com, liked the formatting options, but admitted that there were still some downsides to the rigidly formatted approach.

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        While he enjoyed the features, his personal experience with using it in the field revealed that the formatting features,“mean that if you need to change parts of your notes around, it can get tedious”. He continued, “the formatting features are quite finicky, so you may need a bit of patience to get the end results you are looking for.”

        Professionals who need to be able to build and access well-structured docs in the field make up much of Evernote’s loyal fanbase. One such 2-year user in the real estate field, Anthony Gilbertof RealFX.com, liked the formatting options, but admitted that there were still some downsides to the rigidly formatted approach.

        Structuring your notes properly from the get-go can have an effect on your productivity. A blank slate can sometimes be puzzling. Evernote allows the ability to use battle-tested templates and workflows that save you time. They can provide inspiration and structure on what’s possible.

        On the other hand, OneNote gives its users more versatility and flexibility in the way notes are created. You can click at any area of the page and begin typing. If you need to move things around, you can drag and drop sections of your notes to the right place.

        On the other hand, OneNote gives its users more versatility and flexibility in the way you create your notes. You can click at any area of the page and begin typing. If you need to move things around, you can drag and drop sections of your notes to the right place.

          Source: Lifehacker

          Also, it gives you the option to create Templates that you can use to layout your page properly, so all you’ll need to do is to fill in the information.

            Source: MakeUseOf

            This is a particularly handy feature that stood out to many of the people who shared their love of OneNote with me. Steve Lionais, longtime user and Co-Founder & CEO of Dr-Bill.ca, claims that this feature helped him build his business by affecting his memory in a powerful and helpful way.

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            “This [feature] is what makes OneNote great memory retention app,” he said of the templates. “I find that I remember things more when they are arranged in a certain way. OneNote allowed me to do that for my meeting and presentation notes, so I don’t have to spend a lot of time trying to find the next point!”

            However, what really makes OneNote the winner of this round is its ability to allow you to embed media files from other sources like Youtube. In addition to including the link, OneNote launches a media player, allowing you to watch the video or listen to the audio file directly from the page where you saved it.

              Source: Windows Central

              Mobility

              Evernote and OneNote can be used both on desktops and mobile devices. At the same time, they provide their users with the ability to sync the content from one device to the other.

              Judging which of the two productivity apps is best here is quite tricky because it greatly depends on several factors. One of these is the operating software you use.

              Many of the power users we asked were using iOS, and that put some points toward Evernote. Greg Reese of AmeriEstate.com found himself frequently using the built-in camera option (and other iOS integrations) to manage his daily duties as President.

                Evernote’s camera also integrates with Post-It, Moleskin notebook pages, and business cards. When you take a photo of any of these, the camera will capture the information and format this for Evernote so that it’s quick to find it when you search.

                OneNote, on the other hand, dominates the Android environment. In addition to the app, Android users will also find a OneNote floating badge on the side of the home screen. So you can take notes on the go very quickly.

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                  Source: MS Power User

                  Another factor to consider is the cloud storage you use. For you to sync OneNote across different devices, you’ll need to first set up an account with OneDrive, which is Microsoft’s cloud storage service.

                  “This is something that Evernote users like me don’t have to worry about,” according to Matt Willens, Head Attorney for Willens Law Offices. “Whether you use a free account or one of their paid plans, you can immediately sync your devices without having to get a separate cloud storage account.”

                  The drawback here is the amount of storage and number of devices that you can sync. Free users are only given 60MB of storage space and can sync up to two devices. If you need more storage space, you’ll have to get the paid plans.

                  Which app is better for improving memory and productivity?

                  The honest—and most straightforward—answer is:

                  It depends on you.

                  While Evernote and OneNote have their strengths and weaknesses, how well it will help improve productivity and memory greatly depends on what works best for you.

                  If you find that you’re able to work best and remember things more using visual cues, OneNote will be the best productivity app to use. However, if you consider the speed and ease of finding the information you need as your top priority, Evernote will be your best option.

                  Since both productivity apps have free versions, you can give both a try and see where you’re most comfortable. In the end, the right productivity app to use is one that complements the way you work and do things rather than dictating to you how you should get them done.

                  Featured photo credit: Yura Fresh via unsplash.com

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