5 Apps Helped Me to Take Control of My Time!

Technology is like a knife; it can be very good and can be very dangerous, and as someone living in front of his laptop and digging into what technologies are out there for almost two decades, I can tell you there are good in Technology... If you look closer.

But also there is the bad! And it's not a secret that many of us struggle today to organize our day because of so many distractions and interruptions to our daily activities that we didn't plan for it! Just take a minute and think about your day today or yesterday. Have you achieved what you would love to achieve? Why is that?

Those are the exact questions I kept asking myself, and I always conclude that the answer is Technology.

It's the mobile in my pocket, the smartwatch in my hand, or my laptop at home or work! They are all connected, making our lives much easier and less complicated. Still, at the same time, it creates frustration and distractions, simply because we are always connected and ready to get notified by our friends or followers on Twitter or our colleagues on Slack or just those emails that keep popping up while you are walking; trying to think in peace!

That was the case for me, and then I started noticing that Technology was my problem and, to be specific, it's the way I use technology. It is taking my attention and time! So I decided to fight back, take control of my day! so I decided to Fight Technology with Technology ;)

I started using these Five apps to take control of my day, and here is how:

Block Apps

It’s a free app that helps you create a group of apps and block them from opening or sending notifications to focus on your mental wellbeing.

So, I put all my social media-related apps into one group, my work-related apps into another group, and then configured both to work only when needed. The workgroup works only while I'm at work, and the social group works only for less than an hour a day to avoid distractions for a long time.

Reclaim

It's a Smart time blocking for your calendar. It connects to your calendars and creates blockers for specific habits you want to follow, such as meditation or reading! It’s a brilliant app that makes blockers based on your availability during the day and keeps moving and changing if something comes up!

So, I created blockers in the morning for my habits before work and replaced all my morning meetings with planning and thinking blockers at work.

Fellow

It's a tool to make you create productive meetings and actionable tasks & follow-ups to make sure nothing slips while you are in any meeting or during your day.

So, I started using it for my journal (Meetings with myself) and any personal or work meetings to create tasks & follow up on them every day.

Google Tasks

From the name, it's a tool from Google to manage your tasks.

I tried every task management tool out there, and I returned to Google Tasks for two simple reasons … "Simplicity and Convenience."

If I don't have my Gmail open, I have my Google Calendar open, or Google Docs or Sheets open. We live in "The Google" era, so having Google Tasks that integrate with all these Google tools seamlessly is very covenant, And with that very simple user interface they have, I'm sold.

So, I started connecting my fellow tasks to Google Tasks and creating new tasks on the go from anywhere literally by using the Google Tasks widget on my phone.

Google Calendar

Is the master of everything …

So, I use Google Calendar to create blockers for all my tasks from Fellow, Google Tasks or my habits tasks from Reclaim, the meetings from work, the reminders, personal celebrations or birthdays … all in one place, Google Calendar! The master of everything.

This way, I managed to organize and visualize my day from the moment I woke up until I finished my work (based on my calendar) or even until I went to bed! It's all on the calendar.

After using this flow for more than 6 months, I can share that my productivity and confidence are up high and the measurment is that now I have time to write! and do all the things that I always wanted to do and I didn’t have time for! :D

You may have different tools or approaches, and that is fantastic! You must choose wisely and pick the tools that help upgrade your life and improve your mental wellbeing, not those that distract you and increase your stress level!

The important message here is that the Internet and the advance in Technology gave us everything, the good and the bad. Now it's your responsibility to pick. #StopAllYourNotificaion

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Also, if you like books, podcasts, and articles but have not much time to read an entire book, you can check my blog managernotes.com where I share all my notes from books, podcasts, videos, and articles for FREE!

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Rashid Shobaki

Rashid Shobaki

An entrepreneur and a leader! A dreamer and a music lover! a writer and founder of managernotes.com (Navigation for Managers & Leaders)