2017_10 Lifehacking

Care to contribute to this list? Visit http://bit.ly/Lifehackapps and leave a comment with your favorite app(s)

There are personal elements you can address through apps that will support your professional growth.

  1. Exercise (CNBC, Biz Insider, Keep Inspiring Me, Success, Lifehack)

    “In a study done at the University of British Columbia, researchers found that regular aerobic exercise, the kind that gets your heart and your sweat glands pumping, appears to boost the size of the hippocampus, the brain area involved in verbal memory and learning.” (Harvard Health Letter, Nov 29, 2016)

    my fitness pal screenshot 
    App available via iTunes or GooglePlay
    Screenshot of google fit
    7 Minute Workout

    Exercises in the 7 minute workout
    Image courtesy of New York Times, May 9, 2013

    App screen for the 7 minute workout App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

    “In an interview with O Magazine, Winfrey’s trainer said her workouts include “45 minutes of cardio six mornings a week, four to five strength-training sessions a week, incline crunches, and stretching.” (Business Insider, April 2016)

  2. Sleep Well (CNBC) / Wake up Early  (Keep Inspiring Me, Lifehack)

    “There seems to be a sweet spot for sleep — about seven hours, give or take, depending on the individual — and too far outside of this window, in either direction, can indicate underlying problems.” (Forbes, Nov 13, 2015)

    Never thought about sleep apps? The Sleep Association has reviewed several.
    Sleep as Android
    Screenshot of Julie's sleep cycle     Screenshot of the snoring recordings

    White Noise
    White Noise App Screenshot
    App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

  3. Meditate (Biz Insider, Lifehack)

    “About 18 million Americans meditate, including some very bold-faced names like Jerry Seinfeld and Clint Eastwood.” (CBS News, Jan 3, 2016)

    Brain scans pre and post meditation
    Image courtesy of Fast Company, Sept 4, 2013

    This is the most highly evolved part of the brain, responsible for reasoning, planning, emotions, and self-conscious awareness. During meditation, the frontal cortex tends to go offline. (Fast Company, Sept 4, 2013)

    This part of the brain processes sensory information about the surrounding world, orienting you in time and space. During meditation, activity in the parietal lobe slows down. (Fast Company, Sept 4, 2013)

    The gatekeeper for the senses, this organ focuses your attention by funneling some sensory data deeper into the brain and stopping other signals in their tracks. Meditation reduces the flow of incoming information to a trickle. (Fast Company, Sept 4, 2013)

    As the brain’s sentry, this structure receives incoming stimuli and puts the brain on alert, ready to respond. Meditating dials back the arousal signal. (Fast Company, Sept 4, 2013)

    Insight Timer App
    Screenshot of meditations available on Insight Timer App
    Headspace for work
    (visit https://www.headspace.com/work for more info)


    Calm is an app that is solely dedicated to getting you to sleep – check it out here. Special thanks to Chris Sax from Mid-Atlantic for this suggestion!

    To learn more about mindfulness apps, visit mindful.org

  4. Keep a journal (Biz Insider, Lifehack)

    I am not a journaler, so I’ll direct you to a website that reviews journaling apps. Check out Gizmodo’s field guide of best journaling apps.

  5. Learn something new each day

    “A 2016 University of Edinburgh study that assessed 33 students aged 18 to 78 who had taken part in a one-week Scottish Gaelic course found an increase in several aspects of mental alertness — regardless of age — in students, when compared to a group who had taken a non-language course and a group that had not taken a course at all.”(Business Insider, Feb 3 2017)
    Duolingo screen shot 
    App available via iTunes or GooglePlay
    Ted Talk screenshot
     App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

    While not an app, Harvard Business Review posts a tip each day that you might find valuable to start reading. Visit HBR to read them!  Another shout-out to Chris Sax from Mid-Atlantic for this suggestion!

  6. Just get it together already…

    Mint (see where your money goes)
    Screen shot of a mint goal App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

    Google Photos (automatic backups of your device’s photos)
    Screenshot of Julie's google photos App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

    OurGroceries (share the grocery list with your spouse/partner/travel buddy)

    Screen sot of the Our Groceries App App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

    StoCard (Keep those store cards off your key ring and in your device!)
    Screenshot of stocard
     App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

Care to contribute to this list? Visit http://bit.ly/Lifehackapps and leave a comment with your favorite app(s)

Now that you’ve got your personal life in order, let’s create some positive work habits using apps!

  1. Reading (CNBC, Biz Insider, Success)

    Successful people are readers (Lifehack, n.d.)
    “Reading can also make you more effective in leading others. Reading increases verbal intelligence (PDF), making a leader a more adept and articulate communicator. Reading novels can improve empathy and understanding of social cues, allowing a leader to better work with and understand others — traits that author Anne Kreamer persuasively linked to increased organizational effectiveness, and to pay raises and promotions for the leaders who possessed these qualities. And any business person understands that heightened emotional intelligence will improve his or her leadership and management ability.” (Harvard Business Review, August 15, 2012)


    Feedly screenshot App available via iTunes or GooglePlay – has Chrome extension too!
    Pocket screen shot App available via iTunes or GooglePlay – has Chrome extension too!
    FLipboard sc App available via iTunes or GooglePlay
    Blinkist library screenshot
    Blinkist book screenshot 
    App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

  2. Make Goals – Don’t break the chain (CNBC, Keep Inspiring Me, Success, Lifehack)

    On average it takes 66 days to form a new habit (forget the myth of 21 days or 30 days) (Huffington Post, Apr 10 2014).
    Fun Theory Principles and Gamification provide incentives towards better choices. (Daily Mail, Oct 11 2009)

    Streaks, Goal Tracker and Habit List, Habitica
    Habit screenshotApp available via GooglePlay

  3. Don’t waste time (CNBC, Success)

    Waze screen shot of saved locations  Waze directions App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

    IFTTT Screenshot App available via iTunes or GooglePlay

  4. Password Manager
    You probably need a password manager. To see how the various apps stack up, visit PC Magazine’s recent roundup of password managers. All of these password managers require either a one-time or annual fee. Before you grumble, think about how much password security is worth to you!
    You’ll probably want to check out LastPass, KeyPass and OneSafe (Another thank you to Chris Sax from Mid-Atlantic for this suggestion)

Now let’s consider how you interact with others – creating a great work environment

  1. Remote work, coordinate projects and teams  (Biz Insider, Success, Lifehack) – these apps can be used in your personal life as well!

    “In 2012, Gallup data showed that 39% of employees worked remotely in some capacity, meaning they spent at least some of their time working in a location different from that of their coworkers. In 2016, that number grew by four percentage points to 43%.” (Gallup Business Journal, March 15, 2017)

    Cloud storage/file collaboration: Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Docs
    Project/task mgmt – Basecamp, Asana, Trello, Wrike, Any.Do
    Communicate/Build Consensus -Yammer, Colab, Slack, Confluence, Hipchat, Candor

  2. Organizing Lessons Learned for Future Application (Keep Inspiring Me)

    OneNote, Evernote, Google Keep
    RocketBook – paper notebooks that microwaves/wipes clean with app that executes actions when pages are scanned (integrates with many apps mentioned above) – I have the EVERLAST (which wipes clean)
    rocketbook diagram
    Image and additional description found here: https://www.amazon.com/Rocketbook-EVR-E-R-Everlast-Smart-Notebook/dp/B06ZXWVZ3X
    Rocketbook Executables  Rocketbook scan App available via iTunes or GooglePlay, notebooks & pens available on Amazon

  3. Manage your inbox (and the expectations of others) – (Keep Inspiring Me, Hubspot)

    Batch Check emails
    Canned Responses
    Block time to get to zero

  4. Don’t Multitask (Lifehack)

  5. Make time for deep work – low distractions (Biz Insider, Keep Inspiring Me, Success)

    “Deep work is the ability to focus without distraction on a cognitively demanding task. It’s a skill that allows you to quickly master complicated information and produce better results in less time.” (Cal Newport, 2016)
    Why deep work is more effective than long hours (Forbes, June 8, 2017)
    Spotify ready made playlists
     App available via iTunes or GooglePlay – has web player

    Distraction-free apps
    Find one that works for you (if you need it): https://zapier.com/blog/stay-focused-avoid-distractions/

Care to contribute to this list? Visit http://bit.ly/Lifehackapps and leave a comment with your favorite app(s)