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Published on November 20, 2017

Ditch Your Bucket “List” and Create Your Own Bucket “Map” Now

Ditch Your Bucket “List” and Create Your Own Bucket “Map” Now

When you wander around your city, you might find interesting places you’d like to try. Perhaps you’re travelling, and your friend gives you lots of recommendations for your destination. It’s common practice to bookmark the restaurants and attractions you want to check out in the future.

As you plan your next adventure, you may have a list of must-try places on your phone. Unfortunately, having the addresses for these places in list form makes it hard to visualize your route. You need a map of places you want to go. Instead of making a bucket list, you need a “bucket map.”

You need a personalized adventure map

    Instead of spending all your time trying to sift through notes with recommendations, you can use Mapstr to make a map of attractions for yourself. Mapstr allows you search for places on your bucket list and pin locations that interest you. You can categorize the places to make them easy to find.

    This app not only helps you stay organized, but you can also share maps with your friends.

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    Why Mapstr is a must have on your phone

    Whether you’re going on a trip and want to make the most of your time, or you’re exploring your city, Mapstr makes it easier than ever to decide where to go next.

    1. Add places that you want to visit

    To add a new place, click the plus sign at the bottom of the page. You’ll have the option to search a location’s name or drop a pin. For this example, my friend has just recommended a place where I can buy comic books and gaming items. If I know the location, I can pin it. Otherwise, I’ll need to search for the name.

      After typing in the name of the location, Mapstr took me to a page with the address and some pre-existing information about the location, such as pictures and a phone number.

      The space below the address allows you to tag this business as a specific type of service. I categorized this as a shopping location and included the brief description so that I could remember my interest in the location.

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      2. Create custom tags for faster search and organisation

      In addition to the preset tags, “shopping,” “friend,” “hotel,” “restaurant,” and “to try,” you can use the space below those options to create your own tag. For example, if I loved going to comic book stores on the weekends, I might want to create a “comic books” tag so that I can find similar stores quickly.

        Type the name of the custom tag where it says “create a new tag.” You can even select a color to distinguish your custom tab from the presets. As you can see, I have tagged this place as an area that is good for shopping and comic books.

        When you’ve settled on the tags you want to use, hit the check mark in the top right corner to save your location.

        After you’ve added locations, you can search them by either clicking on the map, or checking the list. In the top left hand corner of the app’s home page, you will notice a menu button. Clicking on the menu button gives you a list of categories.

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          You can select one or more of those categories to display the places of interest. If I wanted to go hiking, I could filter my map to only show locations I have labeled as hiking trails. This is so much easier than searching through pins.

          3. Share your map with friends

          One of the coolest features of Mapstr is that you can share your maps with your friends. You can also make custom maps to share with your family when they come to visit so that they know where to find the best spots in town.

          To share your map, click on the icon that looks like two people in the top right corner of the screen.

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            This opens the “My friends” tab. You can add new friends by clicking on the plus sign icon to find people, share your profile with others, or invite friends.

            You can also share your map on social media by clicking on the sharing icon with the arrow on the bottom right.

              Using Mapstr makes planning easier

              When it comes to creating a personalized map of places you want to see, Mapstr offers a much better interface than Google Maps.

              Mapstr lets you tailor and share maps from Google to meet your needs. The customizable tabs and photos make it so much easier to sort through attractions and plan your trips.

              Download Mapstr to organize must-see locations

              Mapstr has the functionality you’ve been wanting in Google Maps but didn’t realize you were missing. You’ll never have to worry about forgetting an amazing recommendation again. Now you just have to make time to try all the places on your map.

              Mapstr is available for free for iOS and Android devices. Get it today and start planning your next outing.

              More by this author

              Brian Lee

              Chief of Product Management at Lifehack

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              Last Updated on September 17, 2018

              How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

              How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

              Today we are expected to work in highly disruptive environments. We sit down at our desks, turn on our computer and immediately we are hit with hundreds of emails all vying for our attention.

              Our phones are beeping and pinging with new alerts to messages, likes and comments and our colleagues are complaining about the latest company initiative is designed to get us to do more work and spend less time at home.

              All these distractions result in us multitasking where our attention is switching between one crisis and the next.

              Multitasking is a problem. But how to stop multitasking?

              How bad really is multitasking?

              It dilutes your focus and attention so even the easiest of tasks become much harder and take longer to complete.

              Studies have shown that while you think you are multitasking, you are in fact task switching, which means your attention is switching between two or more pieces of work and that depletes the energy resources you have to do your work.

              This is why, even though you may have done little to no physical activity, you arrive home at the end of the day feeling exhausted and not in the mood to do anything.

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              We know it is not a good way to get quality work done, but the demands for out attention persist and rather than reduce, are likely to increase as the years go by.

              So what to do about it?

              Ways to stop multitasking and increase productivity

              Now, forget about how to multitask!

              Here are a few strategies on how to stop multitasking so you can get better quality and more work done in the time you have each working day:

              1. Get enough rest

              When you are tired, your brain has less strength to resist even the tiniest attention seeker. This is why when you find your mind wandering, it is a sign your brain is tired and time to take a break.

              This does not just mean taking breaks throughout the day, it also means making sure you get enough sleep every day.

              When you are well rested and take short regular breaks throughout the day your brain is fully refuelled and ready to focus in on the work that is important.

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              2. Plan your day

              When you don’t have a plan for the day, the day will create a plan for you. When you allow outside influences to take control of your day, it is very hard not to be dragged off in all directions.

              When you have a plan for the day, when you arrive at work your brain knows exactly what it is you want to accomplish and will subconsciously have prepared itself for a sustained period of focused work.

              Your resistance to distractions and other work will be high and you will focus much better on the work that needs doing.

              3. Remove everything from your desk and screen except for the work you are doing

              I learned this one a long time ago. In my previous work, I worked in a law office and I had case files to deal with. If I had more than one case file on my desk at any one time, I would find my eyes wandering over the other case files on my desk when I had something difficult to do.

              I was looking for something easier. This meant often I was working on three or four cases at one time and that always led to mistakes and slower completion.

              Now when I am working on something, I am in full-screen mode where all I can see is the work I am working on right now.

              4. When at your desk, do work

              We are creatures of habit. If we do our online shopping and news reading at our desks as well as our work, we will always have the temptation to be doing stuff that we should not be doing at that moment.

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              Do your online shopping from another place—your home or from your phone when you are having a break—and only do your work when at your desk. This conditions your brain to focus in on your work and not other distractions.

              5. Learn to say no

              Whenever you hear the phrase “learn to say no,” it does not mean going about being rude to everyone. What it does mean is delay saying yes.

              Most problems occur when we say “yes” immediately. We then have to spend an inordinate amount of energy thinking of ways to get ourselves out of the commitment we made.

              By saying “let me think about it” or “can I let you know later” gives you time to evaluate the offer and allows you to get back to what you were doing quicker.

              6. Turn off notifications on your computer

              For most of us, we still use computers to do our work. When you have email alert pop-ups and other notifications turned on, they will distract you no matter how strong you feel.

              Turn them off and schedule email reviewing for times between doing your focused work. Doing this will give you a lot of time back because you will be able to remain focused on the work in front of you.

              7. Find a quiet place to do your most important work

              Most workplaces have meeting rooms that are vacant. If you do have important work to get done, ask if you can use one of those rooms and do your work there.

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              You can close the door, put on your headphones and just focus on what is important. This is a great way to remove all the other, non-important, tasks demanding your attention and just focus on one piece of work.

              The bottom line

              Focusing on one piece of work at a time can be hard but the benefits to the amount of work you get done are worth it. You will make fewer mistakes, you will get more done and will feel a lot less tired at the end of the day.

              Make a list of the four or five things you want to get done the next day before you finish your work for the day and when you start the day, begin at the top of the list with the first item.

              Don’t start anything else until you have finished the first one and then move on to the second one. This one trick will help you to become way more productive.

              Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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