You’re speed-walking through your home grabbing everything you need for the day. Then you’re hopping in your car or getting on public transit. You’re working, meeting friends, trying to squeeze in some time at the gym, figuring out what to eat, volunteering, using any left over time to do your hobbies, taking care of pets—and maybe squeezing in an episode of TV at the end of the day if you’re lucky. This is the pace of modern life, and while your individual schedule and obligations will vary, we can all relate to the feeling of being too busy to take a breather.
When you’re living at hyper speed, it’s easy for things to slip through the cracks. Raise your hand if you’ve ever realized around mid-afternoon you’ve barely eaten anything today. Can you relate to the feeling that you’re forgetting something but can’t quite put your finger on it because your attention’s split in multiple directions? If so, you’re certainly not alone in doing your best to manage a chaotic life.
The good news is that you’ve got a pretty smart device right in your pocket, with you all the time. Taking full advantage of smartphone apps can help you outsource certain tasks, set reminders for yourself and streamline your life.
Here are helpful apps to consider, many of them free.
Todoist: To-Do Listing
Are you scared to even make a to-do list because it will probably turn out like a winding scroll? Have no fear, apps like Todoist are here. Popular Science highlights a few of the most helpful features, including:
- The ability to prioritize each item.
- The ability to rearrange and nest items.
- The ability to set recurring tasks and chores.
Keeping a running to-do list is a great way to stay on top of your obligations, big and small. You’ll feel accomplished when you check things off, whether it’s a personal item like “call Grandma” or a logistical item like “pay rent.”
Clarity Money: Money Management
There’s a reason so many people resist budgeting, or fall behind on it: It takes a lot of will-power and free time to sit down and manually keep track of your expenses! But consumers today can outsource much of this “bookkeeping” with an app to manage money like Clarity Money. An added bonus is that Clarity Money also helps users cut down on their subscriptions, freeing up some extra money to go toward savings goals.
AnyList: Grocery Listing
Say goodbye to the days of pulling out a wrinkled scrap of paper from your pocket full of borderline illegible ingredients you handwrote before leaving for the store. Better yet, bid adieu to the realization you forgot your list and are now blanking on what to buy.
Good Housekeeping recommends AnyList to revolutionize how you grocery shop, praising its ability to “intuitively organize [items] into categories.” It also allows you to share your list via email with your family and friends as needed, making dinner parties and family meals breezier.
Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock: Sleep Cycling
Sleep is the basis for mental health. But it can be all but impossible to get the shut-eye you need to keep it together. The American Sleep Association considers Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock to be a useful tool, namely because it can wake you up during the optimal time within your sleep cycle. This helps users avoid jolting awake when their pre-set alarm goes off; instead it works with the body’s natural cycles depending on when you go to bed and what your window of time is in which you must wake.
Stop, Breathe & Think: Mindfulness
Humans aren’t machines. We all need rest. An app may be the best way to give yourself permission to slow down, relax and achieve mindfulness. Think of it as a much-needed oasis in the middle of any hectic day. Stop, Breathe & Think helps users check in with themselves regarding mind and body. It then recommends meditations, yoga videos, acupressure videos based on your answers.
Get the most from your mobile phone by using apps to help manage your chaotic life.