There is a good news. No matter how rich a person is or how smart a person is, he/she has exactly 24 hours, or 1440 minutes, or 86400 seconds everyday just like you do. Having said that, what is the reason you sometimes feel like other people are more successful than you are? In this post, I am going to take a detailed look at what’s behind the curtain and share some of my thoughts and experiences and hopefully to give you some hint. I am also going to share some tools I am currently using to improve my daily work.
As soon as you have goals set up and plans laid out , it’s time to look at your work flow to make sure you are working effectively and efficiently. Many people get confused on the terms, effective and efficient, there is very good article explaining the difference from Daily Blog Tips. I am not going to ask you to choose one of effectiveness and efficiency, because in order to become successful, you need to have both.
I will start with a real life example to illustrate the difference. The way I handle my daily tasks is to write them down on paper (of course you can use your cell phone or computer to type them out and I have been using these devices lately as I go green – Save the trees!), to improve the effectiveness, I prioritize them in orders to ensure the more important tasks to be done first. To improve efficiency, I group tasks together. For example, if I need to go out for grocery shopping, I plan my little trip by thinking the driving routines, and group other tasks that can be done along the way to the grocery store. By doing so, I can effectively avoid delays and save time significantly.
The following are some useful tools I personally use to help me organize my tasks and improve effectiveness and efficiency:
For Mobile Devices (Smart phones or tablets):
– Taskos: An easy to use app. It supports voice search and you can also type in your tasks. It has 3 different categories for high, normal and low priorities. It also allow you to add categories (to group tasks together), set up a date (deadlines), share with other users (good for family use) and add more details (such as notices, addresses and phone numbers). Once the task is done, you can simple move one of your fingers horizontally across the screen (exactly like what you do on paper by using a pen) to cross it over. By shaking the phone, all the completed task will go away. Whenever I share my phone, I feel like I have done a lot!
– Calendar: A very nice app. Android phone users can synchronize the calendar in the phone to google calendar. If you have not tried google calendar before, but you are using google everyday, I encourage you to use it right away, trust me, you will never miss any of your appointments in the futures – as long as you have a gmail account, google calendar should have been available to you already. Apple users, apple has a very nice, clean and easy to use calendar app as well, use it today and get your life more organized.
– Alarm: You might surprise when I bring this app up. Yes, it’s a very common one, but did you use it effectively? Use it as a reminder. I get my boy in bed exactly the same time every night. I can’t tell you enough how important this tool is.
– ebay and paypal: Of course as we are going to talk about how to earn income from ebay in future posts, do not forget to install this apps. They can help me access to your business operations instantly.
For Personal Computers:
– Evernote: available at http://evernote.com.Evernote helps me a lot on improving efficiency. This program is available on smart phones, tablets and computers.
1) The first beauty of it is the ability to synchronize all your devices together. It’s a very very handy tool. I went on a field trip to tour the city of Calgary in Alberta Canada and I worked on my phone by taking short notes during the trip. As soon as I am done, I synchronized all my notes with my other devices and worked on my laptop for more researches back home after the trip.
2) The way evernote designed was to help you create note books and in each book you can create different notes, so it’s easy to categorize your projects.
3) The check box function in the notes can help you keep track of you goals and record the work process.
4) In addition, it allows you to share with other users. My business partners are using this tool to share the information and jobs.
5) evernote also provide a clip function that help you save webpages. If you are like me surfing on the Internet all day long, looking for good articles and would like to keep them for future reference, you need to try this neat function.
I am using a free version of evernote and the paid version has more cool functions to use.
– Google drive: now google is implementing all the documents, presentations, spreadsheet into one tool called drive (It’s used to be called google doc). I will say evernote helps your the smaller tasks, this one takes care of your formal documents. If you have any experience with Microsoft Office, google drive is an online version of it. Of course it’s more user friendly and easy to share. Microsoft Office might have some very comprehensive functions, but who cares, I am running rocket science here. Google drive can save up to 5GB data as an online hard drive.
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