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6 Tools to Help You Save Time Writing

6 Tools to Help You Save Time Writing

When several professors assign you papers at the same time and you have lots of other studying to do, time-management skills become essential. The Internet is an environment full of distractions, but you can make it work to your benefit if you know which tools and apps to use. Now more and more tools and apps are emerging and it’s silly not to use them. Of course you should not forget about traditional ways of education. But adding modern tools to this process will bring a lot of benefits.  Using the tools in this article will help you write more efficiently and effectively.

1. Writinghouse.org

Being forced to pay attention to the required reference style can be tormenting and time consuming when writing papers. Citation generator Writinghouse.org will save you a lot of time and stress by enabling you to automatically implement APA, Chicago or MLA style for free.

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    2. Focus Writer

    This is the site to turn to if you have trouble staying offline while working on academic papers. Being able to write in a clean space with a subtly hidden user interface will make your brain sharper and more creative, and help you write more quickly.

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      3.  Tutorsclass

      We all know that studying can be difficult sometimes. So it may be better to ask for help than waist time trying to understand the subject yourself. And there is no doubt that studying and communicating with a tutor online is much more convenient than going to teachers or schools outside. Because this way you save your time, you study in more convenient environment for you and you have more information about the teacher you choose. Also you can use this tool to teach other student if  you think you are an expert in some subject.

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        4. Write Monkey

        If you don’t like using the mouse while working on a paper, you will love Write Monkey. By enabling you to use keyboard shortcuts, this tool makes the writing process up to 30 percent faster. Not having to move your hands away from the keyword while writing increases your effectiveness as soon as you get used to the shortcuts.

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          5. Omm Writer

          As its name implies, this is a zen environment that keeps the mind focused on the task it performs at the moment. Omm Writer is useful for students, no matter what type of paper they are working on. The free version is enough, although the paid version provides more calming theme alternatives.

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            6. Q10

            Keeping your mind free of interferences during the writing process is not an easy. The simple user interface of Q10 creates a clean environment that eliminates unnecessary distractions. All functions are accessible through keyboard shortcuts, which allow you to write faster and follow the flow of your thoughts.

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              7. WriteRoom

              WriteRoom will calm your fears that you could lose everything you have written. It includes safe and reliable backup and synchronization options that end your paranoid thoughts during writing. Besides those cool features, WriteRoom is also a great environment for writing, which keeps all distractions away and helps you stay focused on your work.

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                Students have a lot of plans and tasks, and time-management is not a skill most of them are good at. All these tools are free so there are no obstacles to use them. All the student need to advance his or her educational process is to have access to the Internet and  to be patient and hard-working.

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                With the help of these tools, students can save a lot of time on their academic writing tasks. This time then can be used for studying for exams. When you use the tools listed, you will find that you can find time for every academic challenge you face.

                 

                More by this author

                Melissa Burns

                Melissa is an entrepreneur and independent journalist. She writes about communication, entrepreneurship and success on Lifehack.

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                1 10 Reasons Why You Should Chase Your Dreams 2 How to Become Goal Oriented and Achieve More in Life 3 What the Road to Success Actually Looks Like in Reality 4 How to Be Organized: The Ultimate Guide to Get (and Stay) Clutter Free 5 19 Best Mac Apps for Productivity You Need in 2020

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                Published on August 3, 2020

                How to Be Organized: The Ultimate Guide to Get (and Stay) Clutter Free

                How to Be Organized: The Ultimate Guide to Get (and Stay) Clutter Free

                With all the inputs, information, and clutter that come into our lives today, just staying on top of it all creates so much stress and frustration, and it can often lead to feelings of helplessness and anxiety. Most of the time, you simply don’t know where to start when you want to learn how to be organized.

                However, it is, in fact, something that can be learned.

                By developing a few strategies and methods, and having a system in place that quickly deals with all these inputs, you can finally get control of your clutter and, more importantly, stay clutter-free.

                Here are a few rules that can help you on your path to a clutter-free life.

                1. Don’t Use Your Computer’s Desktop for Storage

                Your computer’s desktop was not designed to store your files. Your desktop should be clean and file free. Not only does a cluttered desktop slow down your computer, but it also makes finding things painfully slow.

                Instead, as you’re learning how to be organized, create a basic folder structure inside your documents folder. Now, this needs to work for you, but try not to make things too complicated. What you can do is think about the kind of files you will need to keep, and categorize them between your personal and professional ones. For me, I have two basics folders inside my documents folder, one called “work” and one called “personal.” Inside of these, I have subfolders organized according to my different roles or categories.

                It’s simple, and it allows me to quickly find what I need when I need it.

                Now, I do understand that during the day, when you are doing your work, you may need quick access to certain images and files, and it’s okay to hold them on your desktop temporarily. However, make it a habit to clear your desktop at the end of each day as part of your closing down routine (more on that later).

                2. Learn to Use Your Computer’s Search Features

                It surprises me how few people know how to find documents on their computer with a simple keyboard shortcut, but it’s one of the easiest things to do as you’re learning how to be organized. On a Mac, for instance, CMD + Space bar brings up the spotlight search, and you can type in a date, a file type, a keyword, or a file name.

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                On a Windows computer[1], open the start button, and begin typing the file you are looking for.

                In both cases, you do not need the exact name of the file. Just type a few letters, and within seconds you have the file you need.

                When you learn how useful your computer’s search features are, you will be much more comfortable removing all those files scattered around on your desktop and putting them in an appropriate folder on your computer.

                3. Keep Your Desk Clear of Clutter

                Just as with your computer’s desktop, your desk’s desktop should also be file and clutter-free. Use your drawers for those paper documents that habitually hang around on your desk—a cluttered desk does not encourage inspired work[2].

                Also, take a look at your workspace, and ask if what is on your desk is necessary. Often, we have stuff on our desks that serve no meaning and has no sentimental value to us. It’s just something we have always had on our desk. If you don’t need it or it does not inspire you, remove it.

                And while we are talking about your desk, make a decision this week that you will go through your desk drawers and clear out all the old pens, cups, and other debris that has accumulated over the years. Trust me on this one, the act of cleaning out your drawers and removing all the clutter on your desk will give you renewed energy and ignite a lot of creativity that has been pushed into the background. You will love working at your desk again.

                Pictures of your loved ones and a few inspiring mementos are fine. Just don’t go crazy with them. Keep them to a minimum.

                4. Create a Closing Down Routine

                This is such a great way to make sure you keep your files and other stuff organized, so make it an essential skill to adopt when learning how to be organized. Give yourself ten to twenty minutes before you finish your work for the day to clean up your desktops.

                Move your files to their rightful place, and delete anything you no longer need. I often accumulate a lot of screenshots throughout the day, and if I am not removing them, at the end of the day, they soon start building up.

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                Before I shut my computer down for the day, I clean these up, delete the screenshots if I no longer need them, and leave my desktop file free. It’s a beautiful way to start the next day with a clean desk and a clean computer desktop.

                5. Incorporate a To-Do List Manager Into Your Life

                Writing your to-dos and commitments down on post-it notes just encourages clutter. Sure, it might seem like a great idea to stick these to your computer so you don’t forget things, but over time you become numb to them. They just become a part of your desk, and you ignore them.

                Remove them. Take your tasks and commitments, and put them into a to-do list manager. Whether you use Windows or Mac, they both come with to-do list managers. Make good use of them.

                You do not need to create an elaborate to-do list structure. All you need is an inbox for quick entry and the ability to date tasks for when they need doing.

                I use a simple structure in my to-do list manager. I use a system I call the Time Sector System[3] where I create six folders:

                • Inbox
                • This week
                • Next week
                • This month
                • Next month
                • Long-term / On-hold

                Then, whatever I collect, the only decision I need to make is: when am I going to do the task? I can then drop the task into its relevant folder.

                One of the biggest causes of clutter on desks (and in bags) are all those little bits of paper you use to write down critical information and telephone numbers or email addresses. When these accumulate, they are easy to lose, and you waste a lot of time searching for them.

                Use your digital devices for these. You can take a photo of a written note. You can quickly add a telephone number or an email address into your to-do list manager (or notes app), and if you have syncing set up between your devices, you will have access to the information on all your devices. And what’s more, it will be searchable.

                6. Set a Weekly Time to Declutter Your Devices

                This is an area that can quickly creep up on you, so take time to develop this habit as you’re learning how to be organized. Taking photos and videos on our phones is too easy these days. We take a picture, and we just leave it in our photo album.

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                Over time we end up with thousands of photos in our electronic photo albums that are not worth keeping. I spend around ten minutes on the weekend (usually Sunday evening) deleting all the images I no longer want to keep. It keeps my digital storage needs down—which saves money—and it means all the photos in my photo album are photos I want to keep.

                I do the same with my downloads folder. We often download a PDF intending to read it later, and then we completely forget about it. As time passes, we end up with hundreds of PDFs and other documents we are no longer interested in or no longer need. Delete them or file them. Just don’t leave them in your downloads folder.

                If you want to stay clutter-free, this habit will reward you. Doing this weekly means you will spend around thirty minutes each week cleaning up and filing. Not doing so means you will end up having to spend a day or two just dealing everything, which will leave you feeling like you’ve wasted those days.

                7. Do an Annual Clean-up

                One of my annual rituals is to clean out all my folders and notes. I take a day off from work and spend the day going through everything on my computer and delete anything that no longer has any value.

                I choose the winter holidays for this. Not only is it the end of the year, but many companies are on holiday, and things are generally quieter.

                I go through all my work and personal folders and clean out anything I no longer need. I also archive a lot of files onto an external hard drive—just in case they are needed later.

                It’s also a good time to clear out your email folders, too. Email can become a bottomless pit of emails you no longer need. Go through and purge those. You will feel so much better when you do this.

                With email, you can also declare yourself email bankrupt and just delete everything in your inbox (or if you are not comfortable doing that, declare a ‘soft’ email bankruptcy and you move all your emails into a folder called “Old Inbox”).

                Doing this might seem like a radical step, but it is incredible how much clearer you become. You get to see what you have been holding on to, what you may have missed, and you find yourself with a lot more space ready for the year to come.

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                8. Do a Little, Often

                I learned this a long time ago. Many years ago, I tried becoming a salesperson. I failed miserably at it, but during my training, I shadowed an experienced colleague. On one of the days I was shadowing her, she had to complete and file her expense report for the month.

                I vividly remember her opening the glovebox of her car and pulling out handfuls of receipts and then painstakingly adding them to an expense report—we did things on paper in those days. Four hours later, she finally finished the report.

                I remember at the time thinking this was not a great way to do this. When I got my chance to go solo, I began stopping my car in a car-park on the way home and added that day’s expenses to my expenses sheet. It took me a few minutes, and as I was doing it on the same day, I remembered exactly what each receipt was for.

                When you’re learning how to be organized, you can use this principle for almost everything. Clear out your email inbox every day, delete screenshots from your desktop and empty your bag at the end of the week, and throw away anything you no longer need.

                Doing a little often makes things so much easier, and you do not have that mental backlog creeping up on you where you have that nagging feeling in the back of your mind telling you you have to do something—only you can’t remember what that something is.

                Final Thoughts

                If it doesn’t come naturally to you, learning how to be organized can take time and effort, but it’s ultimately worth it. Becoming clutter-free helps you in so many ways. You have a more pleasant work environment, and de-cluttering your environment also helps to declutter your mind. On top of that, finding stuff is easier, and that means your overall productivity goes through the roof. Choose the strategies above that will help you in your daily life and start getting your life organized today.

                More Tips on How to Be Organized

                Featured photo credit: Jeff Sheldon via unsplash.com

                Reference

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