10 Apps for Improving Personal Productivity

If you’re struggling with maintaining the self-discipline to stay focused, follow your goals and stay on track with your tasks, then these apps for personal productivity may really help.

Do you find that you need more time to complete your tasks?

You’re not alone–in the current era of high-speed Internet connectivity and instant-gratification, there are perpetual distractions that threaten to significantly restrict our potential.

The reality is that if you’re not productive then you’re working in an inefficient manner, thus losing both time and money.

Bill Gates swears by his precise diary which he manages by paying extreme attention to its detail. With it, he maximizes each hour of the day.

If you are struggling with maintaining the self-discipline to stay focused, follow your goals and stay on track with your tasks, then using productivity apps may really help.

Read on to discover how you can finally convert those abstract, good intentions into achievable and actionable items in your daily life.

 

Related: 8 Simple Productivity Hacks for Ambitious Teacherpreneurs

List of Personal Productivity Apps

Here are some of the top apps for personal productivity – try some of them right away and see how much you improve:

1. Daily To-Do List

daily to do list

Our Recommended App – Todoist

Todoist is the best productivity app to manage your to-do list. It is very easy to use and you can quickly sign up using either your Google or Facebook account.

Setting up your tasks is also very straightforward–just type in the details and press enter. You can even set deadlines, assign priorities to the tasks and also group together similar items.

Benefits

  • Easy-to-use and add new tasks whether by voice or text.
  • Todoist offers task reports and even a chance to earn “Karma” points for all of your efforts.
  • Todoist has custom filtering settings that can help customize your workflow.
  • Location-based notifications can link certain tasks to a specific geographic location and send a reminder for you to complete that task when you are in that vicinity.

Alternatives: Wunderlist and Clear for iOS

 

2. Goal-Making and -Tracking

Our Recommended App – Habitica

If you’ve ever played a role-playing game, then you will find Habitica to be quite interesting to use.

In this app, you get goods, gears and the ability to level-up after completing tasks, similar to what you find in RPG games.

You can use Habitica to teach yourself new habits, whether you want to integrate something positive into your life, such as exercising or get rid of negative habits like smoking.

goal making

Related: How Adam Llevo Devoted His Career to Modern Teaching Methods

Benefits

  • The RPG game aspect of Habitica makes it more enjoyable to use.
  • The in-app rewards are very motivating and can help you with constantly checking things off of your daily to-do list.
  • Most importantly, Habitica can punish you if you don’t finish your tasks in time, by reducing your in-game experience and health!
  • The app also has a vibrant community where users can join challenges or quests, where a group of people works towards achieving the same goal.

Alternatives: Taskful and TickTick

 

3. Note-Taking

Our Recommended App – Simplenote

While other apps like OneNote and Evernote aim to offer extensive features and multimedia support, sometimes all you need is a digital notepad with syncing services included.

Like its name, Simplenote seeks to keep things simple. It is the best productivity app for people who work best when there are no extra whistles, bells or multiple distracting menu options.

Benefits

  • The lack of extra features, including the inability to add multimedia files, is actually one of the benefits of using Simplenote: you cannot get distracted with trying different text styles, colors or audio features.
  • Simplenote is also completely free to use and supports both iOS and Android devices.
  • It has a clean interface and is more responsive when you need to access it quickly to note down something.
  • It supports collaboration where you can share notes with others and work on them together.

Alternatives: Evernote and OneNote

 

4. Project Management Apps

project management

Our Recommended App – Asana

Asana is an efficient project tracking, task management and collaboration app built to help teams become more productive.

It addresses an important team management issue: which is to allow members to clearly see what they should be doing and by when.

Various features for projects, conversations, tasks and other key tools allow users to work together seamlessly and move forward to achieving their mission.

Benefits

  • Asana enables a team to control and manage a project from the conception point all the way to its implementation. It’s easy to create and assign tasks, which can also be assigned to multiple members for collaboration.
  • The app features real-time collaborative communication where team members can post questions or comments directly to the assigned tasks for instant clarification.
  • Users can use the Follow feature to stay updated on certain projects and tasks as well as for collaborating with external partners like contractors and vendors.

Alternatives: Trello, Podio

Related: The Tech Behind a Membership Site

 

5. Accounting & Bookkeeping

Our Recommended App – Xero

Switching to a cloud-based accounting app like Xero offers several benefits like accessibility, real-time data, and collaboration.

Xero also seeks to simplify how you manage your finances by making it easier to quickly pull off the information and reporting you need whenever you access the app.

Benefits

  • Banking details, including bank statements and PayPal data, are automatically synced into the app, allowing for an up-to-date view of the status of your business.
  • It is user-friendly and supports unlimited collaboration opportunities with your team along with the ability to seamlessly integrate with other tools like Google Drive, Shopify, etc.
  • Xero gives you clearer insights into your business processes and can help you identify where you need to improve.

Alternatives: Freshbooks and Receipt Bank

 

6. Team Collaboration Apps

Our Recommended App – Slack

Slack is an excellent team collaboration app, especially for teams that are spread out over multiple continents or time zones.

It offers a centralized internal communication system allowing for real-time messages, archiving all information and effortless searching and maneuvering through it.

Benefits

  • All team communications can happen in Slack and you can manage the conversations by creating a Channel for each topic.
  • It integrates with popular web services ranging from GitHub and Trello to Google Drive, for added customizability and efficiency.
  • It has several smart filter options that allow team members to narrow down the searches to any information within a certain channel.
  • It provides transparency in team communications with archives being great for catching up on past discussions, especially for new recruits.

 

Alternatives: Teamwork Projects and Azendoo

Related: 25 Productivity Apps to Explore in 2018

 

7. Virtual Meetings

Our Recommended App – Zoom

Zoom is the video conferencing app that, mainly, just works.

Whether you have a bad Internet connection or your device isn’t the best, this app will keep your call going–although sometimes at a lower quality level.

On the free version, you can talk for up to 50 people simultaneously, while the paid version supports up to 500 people, which is more than plenty for even the biggest teams.

 Benefits

  • You’ll experience a reliable connection with high-quality audio and video calls.
  • Zoom allows users to send answers and questions anonymously when having a virtual team meeting.
  • It can also record and save every virtual meeting for future sharing or download.

Alternatives: Skype and Amazon Chime

Related: A Simple Guide to Choosing the Best Webinar Software

 

8. Staying Focused

Our Recommended App – Forest

If you are one of the many people who constantly check their phone – whether it is on social media or playing games – then you should consider using Forest.

It works by offering you the chance to plant a virtual tree by setting a time for how long a session should last.

That is, once you click the “plant” option, the time will start counting down and you are required to get back to your work and give the seedling time to become a tree.

In other words, productivity allows your seedling to grow!

Exiting the app causes the plant to die, hence the need to refrain from constantly checking on your phone in the middle of a focus session.

Benefits

  • Forest helps keep you motivated by visually representing the success you’ve achieved from focusing for a certain amount of time.
  • Setting up focus sessions throughout the day and only taking breaks after each session can help you regain control of your life.
  • Forest also donates money to Trees for the Future, an organization that helps in tree planting programs across the world. Therefore, by growing and maintaining your personal productivity, you are simultaneously helping the environment and providing opportunities for farmers.

Alternatives: Cold Turkey and ClearLock

Other apps for better focus: Self-Control, Concentrate, TrackTime, and FocusBooster

 

9. Meditation

meditation

Our Recommended App – 1GiantMind

1GiantMind teaches you how to meditate using sessions that gradually grow and improve your meditation technique.

It is considered one of the best meditation apps and its aim is to help more people start this useful and peaceful practice.

Benefits

  • It is less intrusive than other meditation apps as it will only prompt you at the start and end of each session.
  • It is great for beginners as the instructions are straightforward and easy to apply in your life.
  • It has background music and voice options to encourage a better meditative state.
  • With just enough guidance from this app, you can make your own customized meditation session.

Alternatives: Calm, Headspace

 

10. Social Media Management

Our Recommended App – RecurPost

RecurPost is a social media management app that offers you the chance to create repeatable content libraries.

In addition, you will still need to boost your social media marketing with email marketing for better results. (ActiveCampaign is the best email marketing tool that will help you track and nurture your leads.)

Benefits

  • It saves time, especially if you just cycle old inspirational quotes and blog posts in your social media content.
  • The content libraries allow you to store your posts according to specific categories and schedule their post times accordingly.
  • You can also create RSS feeds to fill in your content libraries.
  • Scheduling your posts is fairly straightforward and you can choose the desired frequencies you need for every library and profile.

Alternatives: Coschedule, Hootsuite, Buffer

Related: Top 20 Small Business Tools for Productive Online Entrepreneurs

 

Key takeaway

  • These apps will help you gain a clear vision for your goals and will offer you daily steps of how you can achieve them.
  • They will also help you gain better control of your time (hence, your life!) which will make you feel liberated, productive and very accomplished.
  • The end result is that they will eliminate busyness in your life and will increase efficiency and an overall satisfaction with your work ethic and output.

The benefits of improved productivity are well documented, including an improvement in overall efficiency, effectiveness, achievement and ultimately happiness.

For best results, try gradually combining some of these apps for personal productivity together and check out which ones are your favourite and which pair greatly together!

Want to learn how to automate, delegate, be more productive, enjoy life and boost your profit? Check out our high-level mastermind for educators.