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Published on March 18, 2021

5 Best Daily Planner Apps To Boost Your Productivity

5 Best Daily Planner Apps To Boost Your Productivity
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In today’s fast world, it’s impossible to keep your daily plan in your head in hopes to not miss an important occasion.

Long gone are the times of misplaced post-it notes in hopes to keep tasks in sight. Today we’re blessed with endless digital daily planner apps. They make our lives easier, keep us organized and productive.

If you’re not using one yet, it’s time to start right now. If you’re not sure which one would suit you best, I have listed the 5 best daily planner apps for you to have a variety of choices. These specific apps are chosen for several good reasons. They not only help you to boost your productivity but also make your daily life much easier.

Before we get started, there are a few important criteria that need to be taken into consideration. Matching the app with your personal preferences and expectations is an important task:

  • Focus – Focus is a key element in getting things done. It is crucial for effective and efficient management without wasting time. This is the first element we will be looking at when choosing the best daily planner app for ourselves.
  • Organization – This is the main promise for most of the daily panner apps – to keep you organized. And it is probably the first reason we are thinking to get the app in the first place.
  • Habits – Boosting productivity would not be possible without creating improving habits. It is important to keep ourselves accountable to stay on track to reach goals.

Below you will find the 5 best daily planner apps. Try them out. Decide for yourself which one works best for your personal needs and preferences.

Note, these apps aren’t in any particular order. All of them are great at what they do. My aim is to help you get a better understanding of how each of them can serve your needs to boost productivity.

1. Serene (macOS)

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    Serene is a true winner when it comes to the laser focus category as it helps to shield you from distractions. It lives up to its promise by not letting distractions hold you back.

    The distraction blocking feature helps you enhance focus to achieve more in less time. It’s designed to get you into deep work and achieve goals faster.

    It not only keeps you organized but also improves habits to focus on deep work.

    With its One Daily Goal approach, it helps you stay on track without getting distracted by tasks that don’t contribute to one daily goal.

    Key features include:

    • Focus session timer – clearly defined intervals of focused work with a timer that shows you the timing. Knowing how much time you have left to complete tasks, gives you extra motivation.
    • Website and App blocker – blocked access to websites keeps your focus in check. Knowing the apps that highly distract you will help to increase focus. Staying productive during focus sessions allows staying on tasks without unnecessary interruptions.
    • Activities tracker – getting clear on your productive times is a great way to track your activity. While knowing your most common distractions is a key element in improving habits.
    • Daily planner – setting up your daily plan according to one focus goal is a great way to staying organized. It helps to get stuff done with clearer intention and focused attention.
    • Focus music – playing background music can be a great tool to keep yourself focused and motivated.
    • Phone silencer – putting your phone on silent mode automatically eliminates unnecessary distractions.

    Serene has 10 free deep work hours, and its paid offer is $4/month.

    2. Todoist (iOS, Android, macOS, Windows)

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      Todoist is one of the most popular best daily planner apps amongst solopreneurs, team managers, and larger companies. This app keeps you organized and on task making sure nothing gets forgotten.

      Todoist supports many other app integrations which allow better workflows and easier tasks management. With many advantages, this app lives up to the standards of a highly organized management system. It supports subtasks, sub-projects, recurring tasks, notifications, and more.

      Key features include:

      • Prioritizing tasks – getting the most important things done keeps you productive.
      • Task management – creating subtasks, indicating recurring tasks, including due dates for individual tasks is an easy breeze. Labeling tasks by priority, by context, or personalized system, gives you a customized approach. Setting reminders help you manage better and achieve faster.
      • Progress management – keeping track of progress with the app’s measurement and reporting features. It allows to follow the actions and take measures according to the wanted outcome.
      • Project management – setting up project goals will allow you to make sure you’re on track throughout.

      Todoist has a free version, and its paid offer starts from $3/month.

      3. Things 3 (iOS)

        Things 3 is your personal organizer for business and life. It provides the highest support to boost your productivity and keep you organized. Its simple layout is easy to understand, manage. It lets you start right away as there is no need for a feature introduction.

        Key features include:

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        • Easy input – getting your tasks in the app should be easy, simple, and a smooth process. Easy input means less wasted time. And this is exactly what this app provides.
        • Heading – adding titles to your checklists is a great way to keep tasks separate. It allows you to focus on completing the project and not miss a thing. This means each task can be dialed down into smaller tasks with checklists supporting them. It looks exactly like you would create it on paper. The difference is the option to set a deadline, add tasks to your calendar, and organize them by your unique categories.
        • Integrations – added your email to your to-do list is just one of the examples for smooth tasks management. Seeing your to-do and tasks together as you integrate your calendar is a way to never miss a thing.
        • Planning – seeing all your upcoming lists neatly laid out helps you follow the plan you have set out to do. Scheduling repeated actions on automation will save a lot of time. Reminders will keep you on track.
        • Search option – finding made easy. This option lets you search for any word you’ve ever typed in the app. It gives you the ability to create alarms and notifications for your various tasks.

        Things 3 costs $49.99 on Mac with 15-day free trial. It’s $19.99 on iPad and $9.99 on iPhone.

        4. Any.do (iOS, Android, macOS, Windows)

          If you want to stay organized and get things done, Any.do promises that and more. Its time management features keep you on the tasks. They remind of scheduled activities that can’t be missed.

          Amongst the usual features like due dates, prioritizing, automatic notifications, recurring tasks set up, reminders, and a drag&drop interface for easy-to-do list creation, it has other beneficial key features:

          • Data Synchronization – adding a scheduled event on your calendar and synchronizing it to multiple platforms like Google Calendar and WhatsApp reminders keeps you efficient.
          • Offline Access – knowing that you will be able to access your tool anywhere anytime gives a great deal of freedom, peace of mind, and the ability to always be on top of things.
          • Task management – integrating your to-do list with a calendar makes planning and scheduling easy.
          • Voice capture – being on a run, it’s handy to leave a voice message to yourself that turns into a note on your to-do list. You never know when the next brilliant idea will come to mind!

          Any.do has a free version. Its paid offer starts from $2.99/month.

          5. Trello (iOS, Android, macOS, Windows)

            Trello is for individuals and teams looking to be more productive. It is focusing on helping teamwork reach new levels. Its features allow customized workflows. Simple user experience combined with strategic collaboration between team members for effective work.

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            Tasks can be grouped into boards and cards which can contain another set of tasks in themselves. Individual tasks can be assigned to groups or individuals with deadlines and checklists. If you want more, here are some of the key features:

            • Effective to-do list – adding due dates, assigning to a specific team or person lets you manage the progress.
            • Collaboration – inviting anyone to get things done. It helps you make things happen without a complicated onboarding process.
            • Instant messaging – discussing tasks in real-time adds efficiency and makes it easy to communicate from anywhere.

            Trello has a free version. Its paid offer starts from $10/month.

            Bottom Line

            Choosing the right tool for daily planning can be time-consuming, I hope that this process was made easier for you.

            Whether you are managing your personal time, your team, work projects, or creating a plan for a vacation, use what suits best your specific needs.

            Choosing a daily planner app to boost your productivity is a great way of keeping your mind focused and your progress high. The planner apps help you to make most of your time with ease.

            More Productivity Tools

            Featured photo credit: William Hook via unsplash.com

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            Agnese Rudzate

            Agnese is a next level success strategist.

            How To Set Weekly Goals To Change Your Life Why You Should Stop Working Long Hours (And How To Stop It) 5 Best Daily Planner Apps To Boost Your Productivity How To Save Time And Achieve More Every Day

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            Last Updated on July 27, 2021

            Can’t Focus? The Mistake You’re Making and How to Focus Better

            Can’t Focus? The Mistake You’re Making and How to Focus Better
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            What comes to mind when you think of learning how to focus better? Do you think of the attention or concentration it takes to complete a task? Do you consider the amount of willpower needed to finish writing a report without touching your phone? Do you think it requires sitting in complete silence and away from distractions so that you can study for an important exam or prepare for an interview?

            I’m sure many of you can relate to the above statements and agree that the ability to focus is about staying on task for a given period of time. Breaking that concentration would mean that you’ve lost your focus, and you’re either doing something else or trying to gain back that focus to finish up the intended task.

            With an ever-increasing amount of information—that is easily accessible online and offline—we’re faced with a lot more opportunities and avenues to create possibilities to experience things on a daily basis.

            Unfortunately, that can make it a lot harder for us to make progress or get things done because we’re either easily distracted or overwhelmed by the constant influx of information.

            That’s why many of us end up having problems concentrating or focusing in life—whether it be on a smaller scale like completing a task on time, or something much bigger like staying on track in your career and climbing the ladder of success. We’ve all found ourselves in situations where we blame our failures due to a lack of focus.

            Learning how to focus better doesn’t have to be too complex. Here is some information to help you get started.

            Focus Is Not About Paying Attention

            What if I tell you that you’ve been doing it all wrong this whole time?

            Focus isn’t just the attention span of giving 20 minutes to a task. It actually goes far beyond that.

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            The real reason why we focus is because we need to do something that exceeds our existing capability. We need to devote large amounts of time and energy to move the needle in life, to make that progress and positive change.

            And why do we want to do that? Because we want to spend time becoming a better version of ourselves!

            At the end of the day, the reason why we stay focused on any task, project, or goal is because we want to succeed. With that success comes progress in our lives, which means we eventually become better than what we were a month ago, or even a year ago.

            Let me give you an example:

            Say you’ve been tasked to manage a project by your boss. You have targets to meet and favorable outcomes to achieve. Your focus and attention has to be on this project.

            Once the project has been completed, your boss is happy with the results and your hard work. She rewards you with praise, a promotion, or maybe even a year-end bonus.

            That’s your success right there, and you feel good about your achievements. Looking back at who you were before and after the completion of this project, wouldn’t you say you’ve become a better version of your previous self?

            Focus Is a Flow

            This is what focus is and how where learning how to focus better starts. It’s not a one-off, task-by-task mode that you jump into whenever needed. Rather, focus is a flow[1].

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            Focus is the way in which you deliberately target your energy to push progress in something you care about. Because focus takes energy, time, and effort, whatever it is that you need to focus on should be something meaningful to you, something that’s worth shutting down phone calls, text messages, and social media for.

            So, why is it that we sometimes find it so hard to focus?

            Usually, it’s because we’re missing two major elements. Either we don’t know where we want to go—in that we don’t have a clear goal—or we do have a goal, but we don’t have a clear roadmap.

            Trying to improve your focus without these two things is like driving to get somewhere in a foreign country with no road map. You end up using a lot of gas and driving for hours without knowing if you’re getting anywhere.

            Let’s go back to the example of your boss assigning you a project to manage. The company is opening a new office, and your boss wants you to oversee the renovations and moving-in process of this new location.

            Now, if you didn’t have a clear goal or end result of how the new office should look, you could be busy arranging for contractors, interior designers, or movers to come, but have no clue what to assign or brief them on.

            The second scenario is that you know exactly how the new office should look and when it should be up and running. However, because you don’t have a clear roadmap to get to that end result, you end up working all over the place; one moment you’re arranging for the contractors to start renovations, the next moment you’ve got furniture coming in when the space isn’t ready. What do you focus on first?

            The Focus Flow

            Without a clear goal and road map, things can turn out frantic and frustrating, with many wrong turns. You also end up expending a lot more mental energy than needed. But, having a Focus Flow when learning how to focus better can help.

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            Let me show you how theFocus Flow works.

            1. It starts from a clear objective.
            2. This becomes a clear roadmap.
            3. Then it manifests into a state oftargeted attentionand effort.
            4. This results in pushing your progress towards your ultimate destination.

            Setting a Clear Objective

            To start off, you need to set a clear focus objective. If you don’t have an objective, how can you decide on which things are worth focusing on? You can’t focus on everything at the same time, so you have to make a choice.

            Like driving a car, you need a destination.

            In this case, you don’t want to drive around aimlessly. You want to arrive at your destination before you run out of gas.

            A good focus objective, therefore, needs to be concrete. This means that it should be something you can visualize, such as determining how the new office is going to look after you’ve completed the renovation and moving in. If you can visualize it, that means you have a clear enough picture to know what’s needed to achieve it.

            Drawing a Focus Roadmap

            The second step is to lay out a practical focus roadmap. Once you have your ideas, setting an objective is easy. The most difficult part is determining how you’re going to achieve your objective.

            There are lots of things you can do to work towards your goal, but what comes first? What’s more valuable, and how long will it take?

            That’s where having a roadmap helps you answer these questions. Like driving, you need to have at least a rough idea of which major roads to drive on, and the order in which you need to drive them.

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            Yet, creating a roadmap can get tricky because you have absolute freedom on how you’re going to achieve your objective.

            To create a good road map, you should include major milestones. These are targets you need to hit in order to achieve success. Your roadmap should also include feasible and realistic actions that you can achieve as you learn how to focus better.

            Need a little help in drawing this Focus Roadmap? The Full Life Planner can help you. It’s a practical planner to help you stay focused and on track with your most important goals and tasks in an organized way. Get yours today!

            Power Up Your Productivity

            I hope you now have a better understanding of how focus truly works. By harnessing your focus using the Focus Flow, you’ll be able to work on a task more productively, not because you’re able to concentrate, but rather because you know exactly what your end goal is, and you have a game plan in place to make that happen.

            Once there is clarity, I can assure you that you’ll be less likely to get distracted or lose focus on your tasks at hand.

            You may think it’s going to take you extra time writing out an objective and setting out a roadmap. You may believe that you are better off getting right down to the actual work.

            However, as I’ve mentioned, there’s no point in rushing your efforts that lead you to nowhere or cause you additional detours. You’ll end up expending more mental energy and time than needed.

            Once you’ve made your roadmap and found your focus, follow it up with unbreakable determination with Lifehack’s Actionable Motivation On Demand Handbook.

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            Featured photo credit: Paul Skorupskas via unsplash.com

            Reference

            [1] Very Well Mind: The Psychology of Flow

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