We’re all busy these days; trying to squeeze work, exercise, a personal life, and sleep into 24 hours is pretty much a full time job in and of itself. Often, to save time and sanity, we end up letting a few things fall through the cracks because we don’t have enough energy to get everything done. Sometimes it’s our fitness goals, our health, or even our personal life. But as we all know, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. We need to get on top of our personal lives, or inevitably our work will suffer too. If only you had the funds and prestige to hire a personal assistant to take care of all the little things for you.
Actually, thanks to the wonderful powers of technology, everyone can have a PA in their pockets. There are even apps to enhance interior design, so why not use apps to get your life sorted. They might not actually be able to cook your dinner, pick up your dry cleaning, tidy your house, or meet all your deadlines for you, but there are a few apps that can sort out the little things for you, leaving you more time and energy for the things that really matter.
It’s tough to find an app that works with any device, and still manages to keep all your goals on track. If you’ve recently made the switch from an iPhone to an Android, or vice versa, sometimes all your schedules, deadlines, and important meetings get lost in the shuffle. This is definitely not the case with the “Remember The Milk” app. Whether you use Siri or Google to run your life, anyone who has difficulty with goal-setting, prioritising, time management and/or organisation needs this app in their lives. It’s easy to use, and it helps you juggle long to-do lists, complicated schedules, and multiple project deadlines. You can organise your tasks by name, list (work, home, fitness etc.), priority, due date, and time. If you ever forget an appointment or deadline, a cow bell will ring loudly to remind you. You might never have an excuse to forget things again.
Fitbits are all well and good for tracking your steps, but they do have one major flaw; they can easily be tricked. When this smart pedometer reminds you that you’ve been stationary for too long, all you have to do is frantically wave your arms for a few minutes, and it’s convinced you’ve completed a few more steps. If you can trick your fitness app, it’s not doing its job and you need to find something else. Some people do better with fitness when they have something to gain. Yes, gaining your dream body and a healthier lifestyle are ideal goals, but what if you could get paid? Pact lets you put your money where your gym bag is; every time you commit to a fitness goal for a week, you stand the chance of earning money, or paying out when you fail to do so. The app says, “Pact’s proven incentives have helped our members hit over 92 percent of their goals, to the tune of over 5 million healthy activities.” For anyone who’s ever been short on cash, now you can actually get paid to workout. It’s amazing what you’re willing to accomplish when there’s money involved.
With apps to do your weekly grocery shopping online, you rarely have to complete your own errands anymore. Most major supermarkets now offer online shopping and delivery, many with free delivery on your first order. You can make this job easier by using Hiku in your kitchen; this device scans barcodes in your kitchen cupboard, creates a shared shopping list on your phone, and lets you know when you’re running low on something. If you’re concerned about the upcoming cold and flu season, there is a price comparison site for online pharmacies so you can just find what you need and go. No need to waste time reading labels and finding the best deal when you’ve done your research beforehand. If there are errands you genuinely don’t have time to complete, TaskRabbit will match you up with someone who can assemble your furniture, do minor repairs around your house, and even help you move out.
Commuting to work is one of the most time-consuming tasks anyone has to do on a daily basis. A single unexpected traffic incident can make you late for work, which in turn sets you back from your schedule, and might even make you late getting home. Fortunately, there is a solution to even the most unpredictable traffic jams. Waze provides you with real time directions for the fastest route from Point A to Point B. Think of it as a Facebook or Twitter for all road users; if anyone sees an incident on the road ahead, such as road works, hidden police cameras, or accidents, they can add it to their route and warn drivers behind them. You can benefit from other people’s travel notes to find a quicker route to work.
Trying to fit everything into your schedule is time-consuming and stressful. Sometimes all you need to unload is to come home to someone who will listen to you vent over a cup of tea. But what if you live alone? What if your friends and family live too far away? The best way to take care of yourself after a busy day is to reach out to someone. “7 Cups of Tea” is an app that offers free online therapy and counselling with trained listeners, online therapists & counselors. It’s also anonymous, so you don’t have to feel judged for picking up the phone and asking for help.
Smartphones have become a necessity to function in the modern working world, and it’s clear to see why. Instead of using your phone to browse social media or get to the next level of Candy Crush, use it to make your life a little easier.