5 Productivity Apps and Blogs

Monday, January 6, 2014

Now that the holidays are officially over and done with, I'm trying to go back and find a balance between relaxing and working. Actually, it's more like working > relaxing right now since I relaxed some what over break. 

Keeping Up With Everything

Without further ado, I'm sharing the apps and blogs I use and read on a daily basis that help me stay on task. 

1. Any.do and Google Keep
Both are Android apps ( available for iPhones/iPods as well) and they're both really great. Any.do and Google Keep are task list apps, both with the ability to remind the user something at a specific time and date. I use both, Google Keep for more note heavy things, since Google Keep has the ability to take notes and well as task lists, and Any.do for more short tasks. The great thing about Any.do is that it reminds you at the beginning of the day to plan your day. Also, it's great because you can sort your tasks into three categories: today, tomorrow and someday. 

2. Google Calendar/iCalendar
I love Google and Apple but for me, my phone needs to run on Android and my computer on Mac. Needless to say, it creates some problems for my calendar apps but I've synced my iCal to my Google Calendar. 

Calendar apps are great for keeping track of what classes, deadlines and test days you have ahead. At the end of the day, I like to view what things I have planned for the day after and the entire week so I can work my schedule around it. I do not use this to plan my day, though. I only use it to keep track of appointments, deadlines and tests I have. 

3. Asian Efficiency 
I read their newsletters, which has great tips to increase your productivity and efficiency, decluttering your life. It really doesn't have anything to do with being Asian, trust me. One of the best tips it ever gave me at a great moment in my life was to let it go. If there's emotional baggage weighing you down, talk to someone about it, write it down, and let it go. You've done enough thinking about it. Easier said than done sometimes but it really does help. 

4. Study Hacks
It's blog with a lot more than studying hacks. It's a productivity and efficiency blog and the tips are quality. Seriously. Hands down one of my favorite blogs ever. I always find new things to learn and the tips that Cal Newport (also author of a bunch of really great books) gives are simple and usable. 

5. Planner
Before there were phones and computers, there were planners. Great things to have and easy to use. Plus, you don't need to charge it. 

Honestly, a pen and piece of paper works fine, too. Just don't lose it by the end of the day. Jot down whatever things need to get done and do it. 

Also, don't forget to give yourself a break

How do you plan your day? How do you organize your life? Honestly, do I try too hard and am I making my life too complicated?

For more blogging tips, check out the tip archive here.


  1. I recently started using Any.do (finally found something new after another program I used shut down) and I'll take a look at Study hacks. Thanks for sharing your tips :D I don't plan my days. Most of the times I just write a schedule down so I can stripe things off, but most things just happen and it works :p

  2. I'm going to start using a planner again, I just discovered someone who came up with an ultimate book blogger planner and I'm going to purchase it. UBER excited. Thanks for sharing Alice, I'll check out these options!

    Best xoxo,

  3. Love this post! I've been dying to get some productivity these days! I use a planner yearly but I haven't gotten one for 2014 yet so I'm losing track of my plans!

  4. I'm going to have to check out Any.do! I use (and really love) ToDoist, which sounds really similar, but I'm a sucker for organization apps and like to try everything.

  5. I keep meaning to install Any.Do on my phone but your post reminded me to do so!

    I really like the point about just letting it go, definitely going to check that website out! Thanks so much for sharing :)

  6. Isn't Any.do great? Sometimes I just let things happen but after a while I get a little fidgety and go back to planning. I think it's at a 50/50 right now in terms of planning and letting things happen but who knows if it'll change in this new year.

  7. OHHHHH that sounds good! Do you have a link to it?

  8. Yes I have the link! Here it is: http://www.readsleeprepeat.org/product/the-official-book-blogger-planner/
    It's printable so you can be more creative with it and put it in a large binder so you have more space and room! It's only $5.00. I'm in love with it!

  9. I like your willingness to try new things! :) Have you used Evernote before?

  10. I'm glad I helped you remember. :) Any.Do is really great.

    Asian Efficiency gives out really great tips, even if sometimes they're simple ones. It gives me the extra push to actually go through with it.

  11. HONY! I'm such a huge fan. I saw him on the subway one time and tried to look interesting, so he'd take a picture of me, but it didn't happen. NEXT TIME THOUGH.

  12. Can I say how jealous of you I am? I can't believe you saw him in flesh and blood. UGHHHH. Hahah, and I'm sure you'll definitely get on the HONY page next time! :)

  13. I'm so scatterbrained, I don't have a central organisation planner. I do jot things down but they're on my phone under reminders and notes (thankfully iCloud syncs those things to my Mac), in a small notebook I carry with me everywhere and lose sheets of paper flying around on my desk. Once in a while I remember that I have a block of weekly planning sheets. When I do, I use these. Maybe I should try some of your methods and see if I can get everything sorted in one place.

  14. Google Calendar is a life saver when it comes to the blog! Since there are three of us, we have a meeting once a month and create an editorial calendar on Google Calendar, then we can all access it and easily know who is posting what and when. I also have a planner for my personal use to keep up with my crazy schedule and also so I can remember what I plan to cook every day (otherwise I forget and we might end up eating fast food). But one of my favorite things to help me be productive is to write the top six things I want to accomplish on a sticky note and cross them off as I go. I read somewhere the idea of writing down your top six to-dos, and it definitely helps! Having a game plan encourages me to actually do those things instead of wasting time on Pinterest or something.

  15. I think using whatever system is good, as long as you get things done. My desk is a mess occasionally, too. :)

  16. Oohhh that's a good idea to create a editorial calendar. I wing it with the blog, but I think I should try to stick to a schedule.

    Yep, writing down the things you need to do definitely helps and fends off procrastination. :)


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