“Tools to Organizing Your Life”

Intro

Write a goal. Write a to-do list. Write any damn thing on your mind so that your brain has more energy for other things!

There is a study that says that writing down a goal will increase the chance that you do it (along with accountability and commitment).

http://www.dominican.edu/dominicannews/study-highlights-strategies-for-achieving-goals

There are also a lot of tools that can help you do this.

What are they? How are they?

Here is a small summary:

Oldies – Sticky notes and more

  • Sticky Notes
  • A Notebook/Notepad
  • Bulletin Boards w/ thumbtacks
  • Calendar

Why use these if smart phones and laptops are readily available?

There is a benefit to writing notes by hand in a sticky note or notebook. The biggest benefit… it’s foolproof.

You don’t have to worry about a dead battery getting in the way.

It’s not as portable as electronics but it works.

Calendar Applications

Google Calendar is a great example of this. You just write something down and your phone/computer will remind you.

This works perfectly for tasks with a deadline or for simple off hand notes and reminders.

google-calendar

Here is a screenshot of Google Calendar. Perfect for tasks with a specific date/deadline.

Lists Applications

These include things such as sticky notes for Windows, Google Keep, and Evernote.

You can write pretty much anything you want; such as as a list, class notes, a shopping list, a goal, a to-do list, and so on.

My personal favorite is Trello.

Trello allows you to place multiple lists on a single “board”. This lets you make more streamlined lists or very complex lists.

Let’s say you take a class. The topic is entrepreneurship skills. You use a board on Trello and divide each chapter into a list.

Then you write important notes on each list. Whenever you need a refresher, take a look at the board.

Here is a picture of a list app called Trello. This "board" is being used for notes.

Here are some notes that I took from a video lecture. Go to http://www.trello.com and check it out!

Apps With a Motivator

There are list apps that have a method to keep you engaged.

Let’s use Habitica as an example.

It’s a list app with 4 lists (Habits, Daily, To Do, and Rewards).

Habitica keeps things interesting because your actions affect an avatar that you control.

Failing to do something or succumbing to a bad habit makes you lose Health Points.

Finishing a to do list or performing a healthy habit gives you “xp and coins” to spend on new things.

There are “Dungeons” and you can team up with other people (friends or random strangers) to explore these dungeons.

There are monsters and the only way to proceed is to do whatever you wrote down as well.

It’s an interesting spin on a list app.

A picture showing the website Habitica.

A list app with RPG game elements. Go to www.habitica.com and try it out yourself.

Conclusion

So, which app should you stick with?

Sorry, I cannot answer that. You have to try them out and see for yourself.

I happen to use Trello regularly since I believe it’s very open ended, but you might happen to like Evernote or Habitica more. Or maybe a notebook and pen will work just fine for you.

The most important thing to make sure is:

Are you going to use your organization tool regularly?

Are you going to take a look at it everyday?

That’s the only way to get anything out of these tools!

These tools are there to keep yourself organized and focused in life. Make the most of what’s out there.

P.S. I will upload a few of my notes on Trello soon. Keep an eye out for them(Update: Here they are.). Cheers.

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