- The Complete Guide to List and To-Do Apps
- Daily Quote: Better Three Hours Too Soon Than a Minute Too Late
- How To Deal with Other People’s Negativity
- 30sec Tip: Batch Related Tasks into a Single Chunk
- How To Be Successful In Life: 13 Tips From The World’s Most Successful People
- How to Turn Off Negative Thoughts in Your Mind
- How to Survive Unemployment and Become Better, Not Bitter
- Daily Quote: The Beauty of Simplicity
Posted: 21 Dec 2012 08:00 AM PST
Are you a list-maker? Probably. Do you make to-do lists? If so, do you also make other types of lists such as reading lists, checklists, shopping lists, and reference lists? Undoubtedly. Do you find it difficult to find the list app that best suits your method of list creation? There are many different tools out there that help you to create lists: most of them are focused on “to-do” checklists, and each have their own specialties to match the different ways in which we create lists.
I’ve spoken with approximately 200 people so far, and have discovered both a wide range of different techniques that people us to create and manage their lists, and a variety of tools that are used. This is a breakdown of some of the most popular tools, and how they are used, so you can determine which list-creation app is best suited to your needs.
Wunderlist is a straightforward, uncomplicated task management to-do list app that works on multiple platforms, and syncs seamlessly across them all. It’s ideal for people who make task lists and check lists, as you can create notes for each task if you need to add a more detailed description, prioritize, share the main task list, and even set deadlines. It’s one of the few tools out there that has a downloadable Mac and PC app as well as web, android, iphone, ipad and blackberry versions. This is a great tool for task management.
Asana is ideal for more complicated projects and collaborative task management. You can create different projects and assign many tasks to them, and each task can be assigned to an owner who will then see it under their list of responsibilities. Deadlines can be set, tags can be created for easier searching, files can be attached, and you can create sub-tasks for each responsibility. Tasks can even be set to be repeated as needed. Essentially, it’s a highly effective collaborative task management tool.
Remember the Milk provides pre-built list categories such as inbox, personal, study, work, with options to sort your outstanding tasks by due date. You can add notes to each task, and can easily postpone an assignment with a tap of a button. Tasks can be prioritized, set to repeat, or moved to different lists. The main feature from the mobile app is its ability to see what tasks are due by day, whereas the website version is a lot more difficult to navigate, with many features that are hidden and difficult to find. This is another app that is highly focused on task management and to-do lists, and is available on Android, iPhone, and iPad, as well as the website.
Any.do is set up to help you organize when your tasks need to be completed. You list tasks under headings such as today, tomorrow, this week or later, with different lists categorized in various folders, and then create sub-tasks using the notes feature that lives under each task. By default, any task created in a folder is set to today and you have to switch to the timeline view to change the date. It’s an aesthetically pleasing to-do task management app that’s available on Android, iPhone and a Chrome Extension.
Todoist focuses on projects instead of lists: tasks are created under different projects and you can create reminders, tags, repeated tasks and all the usual to-do features. Tasks are prioritized using color coding, can be moved across projects with due dates, and adding notes to a task is a premium feature in this app. There are some preset views where you can see which tasks are due today, or see tasks arranged by their priority level. Todoist is also available across most platforms.
Evernote is not limited to to-do; it’s a note taking app that lets you create many types of lists. You can consider each list as a personal notebook: inside each notebook, you can create multiple notes/list items with the WYSIWIG editor that helps you create different types of formatted notes for a wider variety of lists. On the free plan, you can attach up to 10 files to each note—up to 25MB in total. Available across most platforms, this is more flexible than a to-do list app and definitely a great one to help you remember and store details, but it’s not the simplest app available if you’re just looking for something to help you create lists.
Listible is still in beta: it’s a list-making app, and in its current form, is not only about creating to-do list apps, but also for a wide variety of different lists. This tool comes with a bookmarklet that lets you clip text, URLs and images into your lists. There are some to-do features available such as archiving (i.e. completing) a list item, but currently it does not have due dates, reminders or repeating tasks. Currently there is a web version available, with mobile apps in the pipeline.
Workflowy takes list creation in a different direction: it’s aimed at people who like plain documents, nesting and bullet points. When opening the app, you are presented with a blank sheet, similar to a piece of paper. From here, you can start creating lists and indenting list items to create sub-lists, and when you complete tasks, they’re marked as finished by being struck through. It’s great for jotting things down quickly as well. This app is still under development, so some to-do related features are still being polished up. Currently it’s web only, with mobile apps in the works.
Google Tasks is a web app that’s built into Gmail. To see it, click on Mail in the top left corner of the Gmail screen, and a drop-down menu will appear from which you can select Tasks. It’s a simple task management tool in which you can create different tasks, check them off, and organize due dates for each assignment. It’s a basic task management tool—the main bonus being that it integrates with Google calendars quite easily to synchronize your tasks that have due dates assigned to them.
Reminders is a default to-do app that comes with your Mac, iPhone, iPod or iPad. It’s a task management tool that integrates with the alarm system of your device. It’s easy to use and simple to create a list of tasks that need handling, with a default view for today, and the ability to create repeating tasks. This app is only available on Apple devices.
Toodledo is another one of the task management app specialists. Focused on productivity, it has 5 levels of priority for your tasks and has most of the same features as the other task management tools listed earlier. Like some of this others, this app uses folders for different lists, so you can move tasks into different folders to organize the assignments you have to complete. It provides multiple views that you can select to organize your tasks by due date, calendar, folders, or priority. This app also has a notebook feature in which you can create different types of notes, but unlike Evernote, it uses HTML markup for formatting the notes. It’s available on iOS and web, and there are a bunch of third party apps on Blackberry and Android that integrate with Toodledo.
Which App is Right for You?
If you only ever create task lists, there is a plethora of apps beyond those listed here that you can use. Most of them accomplish the job quite well, so your preference will depend a lot on your existing task-making habits and the aesthetic of the app itself. The features that most have in common are generally due dates, and task prioritization. There are some slight differences in them, however, as some apps will use numbering for prioritization (like Toodledo) whilst others will use color (Remember the Milk, Todoist, any.do). Due dates are also used as method of prioritization ( by Wunderlist, Reminders, Google Tasks, and Asana).
Task sub-lists are another feature differentiation: Workflowy is particularly optimized for nesting and creating sublists, as are Asana and any.do. In terms of collaboration and assigning tasks to team members, Asana is specficially designed with this in mind and is much more convenient for group projects.
If you want to create a wider variety of lists, then Listible and Evernote are your best bets. Evernote isn’t strictly a list-making, app so it’s not as easy to create lists, but its great for adding a lot more detail into your lists. Toodledo also has note-taking features, so if task management and note taking are your main needs, Toodledo would be your best choice. Listible is particularly useful and easy for creating a wide variety of lists clipped from around the web due to its bookmarklet, and also because it can display the images and links in your list.
Each of these list apps has its own group of fans, because we all create different types of lists in different ways. There are a bunch of different techniques you can try to optimize how you organize your lists… but that’s an article for another day. Feel free to share any list-organizing tricks that you use, and what you favorite list-making app is.
Featured photo credit: Office desk via Shutterstock
Hoi Wan is a mobilist who blogs about smartphone trends and analytics. Hoi has lived and worked in the UK, Japan, Hong Kong and USA and holds a BA in Sport and Recreation and an MBA. You can see his profile on LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter.
Posted: 21 Dec 2012 06:30 AM PST
Better Three Hours Too Soon Than a Minute Too Late. by William Shakespeare
Here are the negative effects caused by late arrival:
Posted: 21 Dec 2012 05:00 AM PST
Sometimes you may genuinely be in a situation when, due to no apparent fault of yours, the other person is negative, indifferent, a little too critical, a bit too insensitive and so forth. If you know how to deal with such people and tackle situations like these, your state of inner joy and peace will remain unaffected. Before I share my thoughts on the present subject, let me elucidate my core philosophy with the help of an example: Imagine you are a pedestrian who is out on a morning walk. A skateboarder comes up from behind, loses control, and rams in you. As a result, you fall down and suffer injuries. Clearly, you were not at fault, yet you are hurt, and you are the one in pain. Even though you are the victim, it is you who needs first-aid, medical attention and time to recover. Regardless of whether it was an accident or a deliberate act on his part, giving medication to the skateboarder is not going to cure or heal you. Keeping in mind the above, what they do, why do they do, how come they are like this, when will they change, etc. is not my focus: my focus is not on them, my focus is on you. We cannot change them—we can change you. They may be wrong, they may be bad; the fact is that if you are hurt, we have to understand how to heal you, protect you and make you strong. Whatever undesirable things happen to you, it is you who has to take action if you wish to avoid them in the future. When you are surrounded by those who drain you emotionally, tire you out mentally, pass on their negativity to you, make you feel low, insignificant, unimportant and a whole heap of other downing emotions, somewhere, it is a reflection that you are not protecting yourself: you are not watching out for yourself, and are allowing yourself to be taken for a ride; for granted. If you leave yourself exposed in such a manner, the consequence will be feelings of vulnerability and weakness. Here are three things you can do to avoid such situations:
1. Express yourself
Make it clear to the other person, as politely as possible, that you do not appreciate their comments, criticism, or their demeanor. Tell them that you wish to remain positive and that for the relationship to prosper, you require a certain degree of respect, acceptance and personal space. If the other person really loves you, they will certainly take a note of it. And, if they continue with their old methods, it is you who has to decide if you wish to persist and endure, or, move on—they are unlikely to change.
2. Remove yourself
If you have expressed yourself multiple times in the past and that has not changed anything, physically extracting yourself from the situation may help you. While it may not be feasible to call it quits and break the relationship, it may be possible to simply get up and go for a walk to change the scenery and situation. It may give the other person a message. I am not suggesting you adopt this approach in every unpleasant conversation—sometimes they are natural and necessary—but if you are facing constant criticism and negativity, a physical change in the circumstances may be the only choice.
3. Insulate yourself
Think of the safety features in a car: the traction control system forms part of active safety, and seat belts, passive safety. Insulating yourself is like the passive safety system—it does not require an impact like the airbags do to swing into action. Insulation from another person’s criticism, comments, and negativity, is one of the finest, albeit not the easiest, ways to be yourself; to protect yourself. (A while ago I wrote a post on how to deal with criticism: you may want to read up on it again.) When you tackle any negativity or criticism by insulating yourself, not only do you gain great strength, you practically render the other person powerless. Their failure to solicit a response from you, their inability to alter your state of mind, gives you a definitive edge; a certain conviction; a blanket of peace; a sense of fearlessness. Putlibai, Mahatma Gandhi’s mother, once expressed her concern to Gandhi when she found him befriending wastrels. She was worried about her son as Gandhi was a teenager at the time. “I don’t want you to become like them,” she said. “I don’t think you should play with those kids, lest you become a loafer yourself.” “Have faith in me, Ma. I hang out with them so I may transform them. They can’t change me. I’m mentally tougher and emotionally stronger than them.” She stood there speechless and Gandhi lived by his words for the rest of his life. People can only ever relay their negativity to you when they are stronger than you. This is why the journey of turning inward is about transforming yourself; strengthening yourself so you may remain unaffected. The emotions you allow to sprout in your heart, the thoughts you harbor in your mind, the responses you choose in any situation, are your private affair. These may be interdependent, connected, or relative, but it remains a personal matter. Be careful, be mindful. Featured photo credit: Depressed Businessman In Undeground Parking via Shutterstock
Posted: 20 Dec 2012 07:00 PM PST
Batch related tasks like emails and phone calls into a single chunk. Finish them in one single session.
Featured photo credit: Queensboro Bridge spanning the East River via Shutterstock
Posted: 20 Dec 2012 02:00 PM PST
No matter how old you are, where you’re from or what you do for a living, we all share something in common—a desire to be successful. Each person's definition of success is different, however, as some may define success as being a loving and faithful spouse or a caring and responsible parent, while most people would equate success with wealth, fame, and power.
We all want to achieve success so we could live a comfortable life—have financial freedom, drive a nice car, and live in a beautiful house. However, although success can be achieved, it does not come easy.
There are a lot of tips and strategies out there on how to be successful in life, but I am still a firm believer that there is no better way to succeed than to follow that footsteps of those who have already done so. Here are 13 success tips from some of the world's most successful and renowned people:
From Michelangelo Buonarroti, Great Renaissance Artist: "The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark."
2.Find what you love to do and do it.
From Oprah Winfrey, Media Mogul: “You know you are on the road to success if you would do your job and not be paid for it.”
3. Learn how to balance life.
From Phil Knight, CEO of Nike Inc.: "There is an immutable conflict at work in life and in business, a constant battle between peace and chaos. Neither can be mastered, but both can be influenced. How you go about that is the key to success.”
4. Do not be afraid of failure.
From Henry Ford, Founder of Ford Motors: "Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently."
5. Have an unwavering resolution to succeed.
From Colonel Sanders, Founder of KFC: "I made a resolve then that I was going to amount to something if I could. And no hours, nor amount of labor, nor amount of money would deter me from giving the best that there was in me. And I have done that ever since, and I win by it. I know."
6. Be a man of action.
From Leonardo da Vinci, Renaissance Genius :"It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things."
7. Avoid conflicts.
From Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of America: "The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people."
8. Don’t be afraid of introducing new ideas.
From Mark Twain, Famed Author: "A person with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds."
9. Believe in your capacity to succeed.
From Walter Disney, Founder of Walt Disney Company: "If you can dream it, you can do it."
10. Always maintain a positive mental attitude.
From Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of America: "Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude."
11. Don’t1 let discouragement stop you from pressing on.
From Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of America: "Let no feeling of discouragement prey upon you, and in the end you are sure to succeed."
12. Be willing to work hard.
From JC Penny, Founder of JC Penney Inc.: "Unless you are willing to drench yourself in your work beyond the capacity of the average man, you are just not cut out for positions at the top."
13. Be brave enough to follow your intuition.
From Steve Jobs, Co-founder of Apple Inc.: "Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."
Featured photo credit: Portrait of smart young business executive via Shutterstock
Posted: 20 Dec 2012 11:00 AM PST
Barring psychological illness, we are all largely responsible for our own emotional health and well-being. What does that mean? That what we say to ourselves over and over for days, weeks, months, and sometimes years, has a dramatic effect on how we see ourselves. This also contributes to many of the mental health disorders we see rampant today: what we choose to have continually playing in our brains stays there, and there’s a real problem when we start buying into the negative thoughts we have about ourselves.
I discovered how powerful the effect of conditioning is firsthand when I was listening to some oldies the other day on the radio—I was amazed at how quickly I could belt out the words to songs I hadn’t heard in decades. How could I remember all those lyrics from so long ago? Because I was conditioned by them. I listened and sang those words day in and day out for what seemed like forever, until they were burned into my brain cells, and some of those old songs even provoked strong feelings in me as I took a quick trip down memory lane.
The mind is a powerful thing, and in a nanosecond, it can elevate or crush our mood because of the beliefs lurking behind our feelings.
If you think I'm kidding, try it yourself: think of an old song, or even the lyrics to one of your favorite television shows. Those of us who are old enough can belt out the opening line to The Beverly Hillbillies in our sleep.
So, what does all this have to do with our emotional health? Everything.
Many of us have problems with negative thoughts playing on the channel of our minds, but if you're engaging in it consistently, and you believe it, it could be eroding your sense of self-esteem. Here are a few beliefs that indicate you may need to switch the station:
Negative thoughts conjures up bad feelings and hooks you into believing that what those old tapes in your head are playing is actually true. In short, it brings your focus to your failures, and that gets you nowhere.
What can you do?
Here are some suggestions:
Notice when that same old song starts playing, and switch the channel
Self-talk is so subtle that we often don't notice its effect on our mood and belief systems—as previously noted, one song can conjure up an entire series of thoughts and memories. Key things to notice are "if only or "what if" statements: the former keep you stuck in the past with regret, while the latter keep you fearful of the future. There is nothing you can do about the past, and the future isn't here yet, so stay in the present moment.
Visualize the good things
Three scoops of ice cream: chocolate, vanilla, strawberry. Fresh crushed pineapple and strawberries, warm luscious hot fudge. Ripe sweet banana. Fresh whipped cream and a juicy red cherry. Get the drift? By now, you're not only thinking of the banana split, you can taste it. If we want to change the negative tapes playing in our heads, we have to visualize ourselves positively—that means seeing yourself non-judgmentally. Picture accepting yourself. How would that look? Draw a picture in your mind and expand on it.
Recognize that actions always follow beliefs
Whatever you believe, you'll experience more of, and you’ll also find yourself behaving in ways that are congruent with your beliefs. So, start believing the best about yourself: act as if you believe that you're a valuable and worthy person.
Pay attention to triggers
Triggers are anything that can start the old tapes playing. If a certain person is a trigger for you, set boundaries with them.
Develop positive counterstatements to refute negative self-talk
Instead of always putting yourself down in your head, think of some things you actually like about yourself. What are your strengths, what are you good at? Developing counterstatements requires you have some degree of belief in their veracity. Keep your counterstatements in the here-and-now, instead of saying "I'm not good enough" try saying, "I am capable. I'm good at ______. I accept myself the way I am."
Thinking poorly about ourselves gets us nowhere and is extremely self-limiting. Decide today to turn off the negative self-talk channel in your mind and develop your true potential.
Back at you: If you've struggled with negative thoughts, how did you overcome it and go on to reach your full potential?
Featured photo credit: Portrait of the young woman close up via Shutterstock
Posted: 20 Dec 2012 09:00 AM PST
In todays world, it can easily happen to anyone. Unemployment can be a stressful period of your life and some people do not know how to cope. They are unable to get themselves back on their feet and start to tackle the process of transitioning from working, to not working, and to get into the mode for job hunting. This Lifehack Lesson is specifically about getting yourself into the right frame of mind to adjust your lifestyle in preparation for the job hunt ahead. This Lesson is free for the first week, if you sign up and add this lesson within these 7 days, you can access whenever you need.. You can subscribe and access all our other lessons and any future lessons for only $4.99 per month.
Here’s an execrpt from this lesson-
Featured Photo Credit : Beautiful morning scene in the forest with sun rays and long shadows via Shutterstock
Hoi Wan is a mobilist who blogs about smartphone trends and analytics. Hoi has lived and worked in the UK, Japan, Hong Kong and USA and holds a BA in Sport and Recreation and an MBA. You can see his profile on LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter.
Posted: 20 Dec 2012 06:30 AM PST
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