9 Must Have Apps to Maximise Your Productivity

Updated: Apr 12, 2020

9 Apps that will help you kick ass in your professional and personal life.

 
 

All you need to do is invest in one word: Apps.

That is how simple it is.

In order to become more efficient and productive, all you need are the right apps. The apps that suit your particular profession/occupation/hobby/goal.

Here are a list of the apps that keep me on top of my game.

 

1. Productive

Summary:

A way to list, track and tick off your ‘to do list’.

Features:

  • Provided list of common daily/weekly habits and tasks

  • Varying levels of reminders (notifications)

  • Statistical analysis on how well you complete tasks

  • Habits and tasks split into Morning, Afternoon, Evening and All-Day categories

Why you should get it:

If you were born after 1990, then you were subjected to a dramatic global shift in educational reform and paved the way for something called ‘positive reinforcement.’ Just like me, you love proof and acknowledgement of meeting small tasks and goals, which I think is completely fine. This app delivers exactly that.

It has a truly satisfying interface that provides easy accessibility and readability. It also provides a gratifying sound, vibration and animation for each task you tick off. I have the premium version and have been using it consistently for two months now.

Price:

Free, unless you want to list and track more than 5 daily habits, in which case the Premium version costs around $39 (look, it’s costly but so worth it).

 

2. Grateful

Summary:

An app with an easy-to-use interface that provides prompts, helping you to be grateful each day.

Features:

  • Journal entry style

  • No login or account required

  • Ability to show entries by date, prompt, tags or other

Why you should get it:

Practising gratitude is reportedly shown to have incredibly benefits for your well-being, especially in our contemporary society where the expectations are ever-growing. I love to be able to respond to simple prompts such as ‘What are you looking forward to?’ and ‘What made you laugh today?’ to realise just how wonderful he world can be.

Price:

Free, unless you want to be able to make more than 15 journal entries (without clearing them all and starting again fresh), in which is costs a one-off payment of $7.99.

 

3. Sleep Cycle – Sleep Better

Summary:

Set alarms to wake you up at the most appropriate segment of your sleep.

Features:

  • Sleep analysis, providing a detailed breakdown of how well/badly you slept

  • Sleep aid (meditation soundscapes or guided meditations to help you get to sleep)

  • Customisable wake-up window (choose a 30+ minute window to wake yourself up in)

Why you should get it:

This app, simply put, should replace your alarm clock app on your phone. The ability it has to wake you up at the optimum time means that you aren’t shocked into waking up and remain lethargic throughout the morning. I have found waking up with this app that I have more energy in the morning and it is interesting to see how my sleep compares to others I have had during that week.

Another positive aspect is that the calming alarm tone is yet to wake up my girlfriend who sleeps next to me, so I haven’t copped any flak from her about waking up too early yet (bonus). I have the premium app.

Price:

Free, unless you want the premium features such as enhanced sleep aid, ability to track your wake-up mood, online backup, and a simulated sunrise lighting feature (which is pretty darn cool), in which it will cost you around $39 (again, pricey, but totally worth it).

 

4. Forest – Stay Focused

Summary:

An app that cuts off access to all other social media and distraction applications/phone features to make sure you commit to the work you have set out.

Features:

  • Customise the time you set out for intensive work

  • Plant a tree function, every time you are successful and plant a tree, a real tree is planted somewhere in the world (an awesome sustainability feature that puts this app in the upper echelon of focus applications)

  • Build a forest (watch as your productivity and focus takes the shape of a small interactive forest)

Why you should get it:

Everybody should have one of these apps. It helps us to develop the capacity to work with our phone present (rather than having to drop our phone into another room entirely in order to stay off it). The feature that allows you to plant a physical tree every time you complete a block of intensive work is such a beautiful spin on such an app.

Price:

Free.

 

5. Headspace: Meditation and Sleep

Summary:

An arsenal of meditations (guided, soundscapes, etc.)

Features:

  • Meditations categorised by need (sleep aid, restorative workouts, mindfulness, performance mindset, stress and anxiety, personal growth – the list is far too long to continue on with here.

  • Suggested meditations, based on previous engagement

  • Buddy up feature to complete virtually with a friend anywhere in the world

Why you should get it:

The data is increasingly suggesting that meditation is one of the foremost processes responsible for stress and anxiety alleviation. Not only that, this app will help you fall to sleep in minutes. I love the guided mediation stories – spoken in such a resonate and deep voice that you cannot help but drift off seamlessly and sleep well throughout the entire night.

Price:

Free for teachers and students (big win for myself, as I am a teacher). If you are hoping for a free and similarly awesome app that you don’t need to pay for, try: Smiling Minds.

 

6. Podcast Player: Castbox

Summary:

Free podcast service.

Features:

  • Stream podcasts

  • Download ahead of time

  • Choose how many episodes ahead it will download

Why you should get it:

Not necessarily this particular podcast app, but any podcast app. Podcasts are an excellent way to pass time and are perfect for long commutes. The aim for all productive people and anyone hoping to accelerate their professional or personal growth should be to remain a life-long-learner. That means

Price:

Free – do not pay for a podcast app, ever.

 

7. 86 400

Summary:

Places all your bank accounts into one, user-friendly place. Tracks and lets you know when upcoming bills are headed your way.

Features:

  • Consolidate your expenses

  • See all bank account values in one place

  • Predicts your expenses


Why you should get it:

Having your finances under control is an excellent way to alleviate stress and pour your attentions into more creative avenues.

Price:

Free. The only thing is that they will provide you with 86 400 accounts. You don’t need to activate them to be able to use the app, though, so I still suggest this app for anyone wanting to take the reins on their finances.

 

8. Canva

Summary:

Create professional standard images/designs/graphics from pre-made templates

Features:

  • Logos/Graphics and more, ready-made to upload to all social media platforms

  • Business quality templates including resumes and brochures

  • Free image editor, ability to upload images of your own

Why you should get it:

I would only suggest you download this app if you are active on social media and/or need to create advertisement graphics for your business. I use for both my teaching and my writing; my teaching, for creating certificates, social media posts, information pamphlets; and in my writing for titles, cover pages, an author C.V and more.

Price:

Free. There is a premium version; however, I have been using this app for four years now without the Pro version and have gotten by just fine.

 

9. Notes

Summary:

Take down notes.

Features:

  • More than you would know about, I’m sure.

  • Ability to upload photos and brainstorm around it

  • Automatic upload and sharing with you MacBook

Why you should get it:

It comes with the purchase of your iPhone; however, I feel that most people tend to overlook it. Notes is an awesome way to make to do lists on the go, and have it register on your MacBook and iPhone simultaneously.

You can upload photos to it and brainstorm concepts for free (most competitive apps will charge you through the teeth to be able to do this).

Price:

Free. The only thing is that they will provide you with 86 400 accounts. You don’t need to activate them to be able to use the app, though, so I still suggest this app for anyone wanting to take the reins on their finances.

 

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