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Feeling Hectic to Manage Across Different Email Accounts? Use “Alto” to Gather and Organise Them All At One Place

Feeling Hectic to Manage Across Different Email Accounts? Use “Alto” to Gather and Organise Them All At One Place

Many of us have more than one email account. If you have a desk job, you probably have to manage a work email as well as your personal email. Or maybe you’re in school, so you have an “.edu” email address as well as an older personal one. Perhaps you juggle several jobs, plus school, so you have three or more accounts.

Whatever the reason, it’s hard to stay on top of many email accounts at once, especially when we need to reference a particular email and can’t remember which address it was sent to! What’s more, it’s unfortunately easy for an important email or two to slip through the cracks.

Gather and Manage all your email accounts at one place

Enter Alto. Made by AOL, Alto works with any email provider, including Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, AOL Mail, Exchange, and more. With this highly-rated app, you can stay completely on top of all of your accounts, and make sure to respond to every important message: from friends, family, your boss, colleagues, and customers.

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    Connect all of your accounts to Alto, and the app will place all the emails you receive into a single inbox. As Alto’s general manager writes, “Alto lets you add all your different accounts, but aggregates all the important time-sensitive and location-sensitive stuff in a way that lets the user get to it easily.”

    All the upcoming events come at the top of your inbox

    Additional features make Alto even more useful than putting emails in a single place. One of the more helpful features is the Dashboard (see above). Alto will automatically generate cards and place them at the top of your inbox: recent charges, flight info, package tracking information, or upcoming meetings. What Dashboard does is automatically aggregate this information into a single location. This is a far cry from digging through emails in the airport, half an hour before your flight, with several open tabs.

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        Visualise your emails so you can read and search based on media attachments

        Alto also immediately filters and organizes your emails based on content, a feature called “Stacks.” So if you want to find emails with photo attachments, or all emails with file attachments, all of those are grouped together into individual stacks. You can even personalize stacks based on the categories most useful to you, such as “starred” or “unread” emails.

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          When composing emails within Alto, you can choose which email address you’d like to send it from. If you allow the app to access your contacts, you should have no trouble pulling up addresses of people who you frequently send messages to. A beautiful and intuitive interface makes Alto a pleasure to use. It’s easy to switch between the “All Accounts” inbox and your individual ones: using the mobile app, you can just swipe left and right between them.

          You can also access your calendars (Google, Outlook, etc.), weather, email archives, and more within the app for all-in-one easy access. Integration with Slack and Amazon Echo make it easy to seamlessly connect work and home life.

          Available on Google Play for Android, iTunes for iPhones or iPods, and for your web broswer, you can download Alto immediately for free. Try it out and see how streamlined you can make your life!

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          Featured photo credit: Rawpixel via unsplash.com

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          Brian Lee

          Chief of Product Management at Lifehack

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          Last Updated on September 24, 2020

          17 Ways Learn New Skills Faster and Enjoy the Process

          17 Ways Learn New Skills Faster and Enjoy the Process

          In the movie The Matrix, everyone was intrigued with the ability that Neo and his friends possessed to learn new skills in a matter of seconds. With the incredible rise in technology today, the rapid learning in the movie is becoming much more of a reality than you realize.

          The current generation has access to more knowledge and information than any before it. Through the internet, we are able to access all sorts of knowledge to answer almost every conceivable question. To become smarter, it’s more about the ability to learn faster, rather than being a natural born genius.

          Here are 17 ways to kickstart your Matrix-style learning experience in a short amount of time.

          1. Deconstruct and Reverse Engineer

          Break down the skill that you want to learn into little pieces and learn techniques to master an isolated portion. The small pieces will come together to make up the whole skill.

          For example, when you’re learning to play the guitar, learn how to press down a chord pattern with your fingers first without even trying to strum the chord. Once you are able to change between a couple of chord patterns, then add the strumming.

          2. Use the Pareto Principle

          Use the Pareto Principle, which is also known as the 80 20 rule. Identify the 20% of the work that will give you 80% of the results. Find out more about the 80 20 rule here: What Is the 80 20 Rule (And How to Use It to Boost Productivity)

          Take learning a new language for example. It does not take long to realize that some words pop up over and over again as you’re learning. You can do a quick search for “most commonly used French words,” for example, and begin to learn them first before adding on the rest.

          3. Make Stakes

          Establish some sort of punishment for not learning the skill that you are seeking. There are sites available that allow you to make a donation toward a charity you absolutely hate if you do not meet your goals. Or you can place a bet with a friend to light that fire under you.

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          However, keep in mind that several studies have shown that rewards tend to be more motivating than punishment[1].

          4. Record Yourself

          Seeing yourself on video is a great way to learn from your mistakes and identify areas that you need to improve. This is very effective for any musicians, actors, speakers, performers, and dancers.

          5. Join a Group

          There are huge benefits to learning in a group. Not only are you able to learn from others but you’ll be encouraged to make progress together. Whether it’s a chess club, a mastermind group, or an online meet-up group, get connected with other like-minded individuals.

          6. Time Travel

          Visit the library. Although everything is moving more and more online, there are still such things called libraries.

          Whether it’s a municipal library or your university library, you will be amazed at some of the books available there that are not accessible online. Specifically, look for the hidden treasures and wisdom contained in the really old books.

          7. Be a Chameleon

          When you want to learn new skills, imitate your biggest idol. Watch a video and learn from seeing someone else do it. Participate in mimicry and copy what you see.

          Studies have shown that, apart from learning,[2]

          “Mimicry is an effective tool not only to create ties and social relationships, but also for maintaining them.”

          Visual learning is a great way to speed up the learning process. YouTube has thousands of videos on almost every topic available.

          8. Focus

          Follow one course until success! It’s easy to get distracted, to throw in the towel, or to become interested in the next great thing and ditch what you initially set out to do.

          Ditch the whole idea of multitasking, as it has been shown to be detrimental and unproductive Simply focus on the one new skill at hand until you get it done.

          9. Visualize

          The mind has great difficulty distinguishing between what is real and what is imagined. That is why athletes practice mentally seeing their success before attempting the real thing[3].

          Visualize yourself achieving your new skill and each step that you need to make to see results. This is an important skill to help when you’re learning the basics or breaking a bad habit.

          Take a look at this article to learn how to do so: How to Become a Person Who Can Visualize Results

          10. Find a Mentor

          Success leaves clues. The best short cut to become an expert is to find an expert and not have to make the mistakes that they have made.

          Finding out what NOT to do from the expert will fast-track your learning when you want to learn new skills. It is a huge win to have them personally walk you through what needs to be done. Reach out and send an email to them.

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          If you need help learning how to find a mentor, check out this article.

          11. Sleep on It

          Practice your new skill within four hours of going to sleep.

          Josh Kaufman, author of The Personal MBA, is a noted rapid learning expert. He says that any practice done within this time frame causes your brain to embed the learning more rapidly into its neural pathways. Your memory and motor-mechanics are ingrained at a quicker level.

          12. Use the 20-Hour Rule

          Along with that tip, Kaufman also suggests 20 as the magic number of hours to dedicate to learning the new skill.

          His reasoning is that everyone will hit a wall early on in the rapid learning stage and that “pre-committing” to 20 hours is a sure-fire way to push through that wall and acquire your new skill.[4]

          Check out his video to find out more:

          13. Learn by Doing

          It’s easy to get caught up in reading and gathering information on how to learn new skills and never actually get around to doing those skills. The best way to learn is to do.

          Regardless of how unprepared you feel, make sure you are physically engaged continuously. Keep alternating between research and practice.

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          14. Complete Short Sprints

          Rather than to force yourself into enduring hours upon hours of dedication, work in short sprints of about 20-30 minutes, then get up and stretch or take a short walk. Your brain’s attention span works best with short breaks, so be sure to give it the little rest it needs.

          One study found that, between two groups of students, the students who took two short breaks when studying actually performed better than those who didn’t take breaks[5].

          15. Ditch the Distractions

          Make sure the environment you are in is perfect for your rapid-learning progress. That means ditching any social media, and the temptation to check any email. As the saying goes, “Out of sight, out of mind.”

          Before you sit down to learn new skills, make sure that potential distractions are far from sight.

          16. Use Nootropics

          Otherwise known as brain enhancers, these cognitive boosters are available in natural herbal forms and in supplements.

          Many students will swear by the increased focus that nootropics will provide[6], particularly as they get set for some serious cramming. Natural herbal nootropics have been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic traditions to improve the mind and learning.

          Find out more about brain supplements in this article.

          17. Celebrate

          For every single small win that you experience during the learning process, be sure to celebrate. Your brain will release endorphins and serotonin as you raise your hands in victory and pump your fits. Have a piece of chocolate and give yourself a pat on the back. This positive reinforcement will help you keep pushing forward as you learn new skills.

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          The Bottom Line

          Learning a new skill should be exciting and fun. Whether you use online courses, real world experience, YouTube videos, or free online resources, take time to learn in the long term. Keep picturing the joy of reaching the end goal and being a better version of yourself as continual motivation.

          More Tips on How to Learn New Skills

          Featured photo credit: Elijah M. Henderson via unsplash.com

          Reference

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