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Dump Your Calculator and Make The “Currency” App Your Ultimate Travel Buddy

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Dump Your Calculator and Make The “Currency” App Your Ultimate Travel Buddy

Travelling to different countries and experiencing different cultures can be wondrous and exciting. But when it comes to shopping or buying those souvenirs, currency can become confusing. Not just in terms of fumbling for the correct coins and notes but also the exchange rates. How often do you try and figure out an estimate of how much you’re really paying for that T-shirt or meal at the local restaurant?

It becomes even more confusing when shops allow you to pay in different currencies. Which is best? If you don’t know the current exchange rate or you’re using a ballpark guesstimate it can be hard to work out if you’re losing money or getting a good deal.

The Best App To Take Travelling and Find Out Exactly What You’re Paying

There is an easy solution to this problem that doesn’t involve having a rough or out of date exchange rate in your mind and a calculator to hand.

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Currency is an instant exchange app that will easily convert foreign currency to your home currency quickly and easily allowing you to make a more informed decision on your overseas purchases. And with over 160 different currencies to choose from, you’re guaranteed to know exactly how much you’re paying wherever you are in the world.

Using the Currency App is Super Easy

Once you’ve downloaded the app from your app store, it should automatically set your home currency at the top of your screen. You can then use the search bar to add the currency you need to use to your favourites. On the free version you can add up to five different currencies but if you find you travel a lot then the paid version lets you add as many as you like.

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    If you want to change your home currency, simply tap on the country you want and it will easily take it to the top of the screen. Tap on the second currency you want to convert from and it will appear below the home currency.

      Once you’ve set up your currencies, swipe the screen up to reveal the app’s calculator. Here you can add or subtract several purchases or calculations in keeping with the exchange rate which makes it much easier than using a standard calculator.

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      To clear your calculations, simply swipe the currency to the right and it’ll reset it to zero. Alternatively, drag it back to restore your previous calculations.

        Another feature is a handy historical chart to show the rise and fall of the exchange rates over a 6 month period of time. This is helpful if you regularly visit the same countries and purchase large amounts in certain foreign currencies.

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          So next time you travel abroad, don’t look at the exchange rate before you go and use your phone’s calculator to try and work out exactly what you’re paying. This kind of calculation will usually end up being wildly out and could end up losing you money over time. Let Currency do the hard work for you and feel safe in the knowledge that you’re getting the best deals around the world.

          More by this author

          Brian Lee

          Chief of Product Management at Lifehack

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          Last Updated on October 21, 2021

          How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

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          How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

          Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

          Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

          The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

          Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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          Program Your Own Algorithms

          Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

          Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

          By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

          How to Form a Ritual

          I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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          Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

          1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
          2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
          3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
          4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

          Ways to Use a Ritual

          Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

          1. Waking Up

          Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

          2. Web Usage

          How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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          3. Reading

          How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

          4. Friendliness

          Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

          5. Working

          One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

          6. Going to the gym

          If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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          7. Exercise

          Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

          8. Sleeping

          Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

          8. Weekly Reviews

          The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

          Final Thoughts

          We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

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          Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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