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6 Best URL Shrinkers You Should Start Using

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6 Best URL Shrinkers You Should Start Using

URL shrinkers

    URL shrinkers are an absolutely essential tool in today’s internet. URLs are getting longer, attention spans are getting shorter, and places like Twitter have strict character limits. The internet is just not built for long URLs anymore but websites like Dropbox and Google Search results continue to generate URLs that are longer than this paragraph. The solution is the URL shrinker. Would you like to know the best ones? Read on to find out!

    1. cli.gs

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    URL shrinkers

      First up is cli.gs and this is a powerful shrinker. It clocks in at 20 characters per URL. One of the features it includes is click tracking, so you can see how many people have clicked your link. Even better is that you don’t need an account to check the analytics. You just need the original link and you can see how many times it’s been clicked and which websites the clicks came from.

      2. goo.gl

      URL shrinkers

        Google’s shrinker is called goo.gl and if you have a Google account that you actively use then this is the URL shrinker for you. You can see various analytics, much like cli.gs above, with the exception being that you need your Google account to keep track of them. You can use it without an account but you can’t otherwise manage it once you move away from the site. The best feature is that it keeps a detailed list of all the links you’ve created for future reference if need be. The links are 20 characters long.

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        3. bitly

        URL shrinkers
          Bit.ly

          is one of the original URL shrinkers and one of the few that the average person recognizes. This is also one of the more powerful shrinkers, as long as you make an account. The links come in the standard 20-character size so you don’t need to worry about length in comparison to others. Some of the features include analytics and browser extensions should you need them. The fact that people recognize Bitly is important because it lends credibility to your links and people won’t feel as much trepidation when clicking on them.

          4. is.gd

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          URL shrinkers
            is.gd

            is a lesser-known URL shrinker but it does have a unique claim to fame. The shortened links generated by this site are a paltry 14 characters long and are the shortest of any on this list. You’ll be missing out on stuff like analytics, browser extensions, and other tools. But if you need something short, simple, and sweet, this is the one you should use.

            5. TinyURL

            URL shrinkers
              TinyURL

              is the original URL shrinker and the very reason this article exists. It’s been doing this the longest and blogs, websites, and everyday people have been using TinyURL for ages. That means practically everyone has seen TinyURL links and trusts them. Unfortunately, the links are a little bit longer at 25 characters. However, on the plus side, you can also preview any TinyURL link to see where it heads by putting the word preview in the URL. For example: http://preview.tinyurl.com/2mgpyg

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              6. SnipURL

              URL shrinkers
                SnipURL

                is the last one on our list and it clocks in a little long at 24 characters. Don’t let that chase you away, because SnipURL has one of the more unique features of any on this list in that it allows you to edit links after you make them. So if you use a wrong link you can fix it without creating a whole new shortened URL. It requires a free account to access the features but you can still make links without one.

                Wrap up

                The bottom line is that you should find the URL shrinker that works for your personal needs. Bloggers like myself appreciate things like click metrics to see if the links we share are getting clicks. People on Twitter may like the URL shrinkers with the smallest links. Those of us who are clumsy may appreciate the ability to edit links after we create them. The options are there and you just need to choose!

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                Featured photo credit: Google via goo.gl

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                Joseph Hindy

                A writer, editor, and YouTuber who likes to share about technology and lifestyle tips.

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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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