Jan 5, 2018

The new year always comes with hope for changes. When we enter a new year, the very first question we might receive is: “What’s your New Year’s resolution?” Often, it’s a change in one aspect of our lifestyle. And even more often, we end up doing our resolutions only in the first few months of the year before going back to our miserable state the rest of the year.

It’s difficult to change habits, but technology can help us stick to our goals. Although these apps aren’t exactly new, we can use them to help us through the year.

Pillow for those who want to sleep better

Let me start with something close to my heart.

During the last few months of 2017, I always woke up feeling sluggish. I felt like I forgot what a good’s night sleep was and I can’t even remember my dreams. To be honest, we are all taking sleep for granted.

At the start of the year, I decided to install Pillow on my iPad instead of just relying on my phone’s alarm clock feature. The app’s interface is pretty simple. It first asks you about the time you wish to wake up and on the side, it shows you how much sleep you’re getting. Then, you can opt to add an ambient noise that automatically stops once you’re asleep. When you wake up, it plots the stages of your sleep in detail and rates the quality of your sleep. For those who are curious if they snore or talk in their sleep, Pillow also records sound.

With this app, you can compare your sleeping patterns and assess the factors affecting it.

Spendee for those who want to manage their finances well

The first step to saving is keeping track of your income and expenses. While good old tickler and a clear book for your receipts may still work, budgeting app Spendee can guide you in managing your finances.

Spendee simply asks you to input your income and every expense. Then, it gives you an overview of how much you’ve been spending versus your earnings. With a multiple shared wallets feature, the app comes in handy for families or people with shared income.

Handpick for those who want to eat better

Eating healthy is another popular new year’s resolution. However, it’s also one of the most difficult to keep. While schedule is often the challenge, the lack of recipes in accordance with the available ingredients also makes it difficult.

If that’s your case, Handpick app allows you to cook meals according to the main ingredients you have. You simply have to click all the available ingredients in your pantry and the app will give you suggested recipes.

For those who wish to throw a dinner minus the hassle of building a menu, Handpick also has meal kits that help you build you three meals with a certain number of ingredients. For example, their Mamma Mia! meal kit allows you to make a three-meal Italian dinner with just 20 ingredients.

Forest for those who wish to be more productive

It’s hard to stay focused when your phone is right beside you as you work. When you receive a notification and open it right away, chances are you’ll take an unintended long break from whatever you’re doing to check it and without knowing, you’re already looking through your Instagram stories.

If that’s also your problem, productivity app Forest might be helpful. The app follows the Pomodoro technique. Before you dive into work, there’s a certain amount of time allotted when you won’t be allowed to check your phone. What makes it interesting, though, is the fact that you’re planting a seed every time you use the app. As you work while the app is on, the seed grows into a tree. However, if you decide to leave the app while it’s still running, the tree withers and dies. As you build your forest, Forest’s partner organization Trees for the Future also plants trees in real life.

Plant Nanny for those who want to drink more water

I downloaded Plant Nanny thinking that it will help me with keeping my plants hydrated. However, the app actually keeps its users hydrated instead. The app is similar to Forest as it requires you to nurture a digital plant. Each time you register every glass of water you drink in the app, the plant grows. When you don’t drink enough water, the plant grows slowly and may even wither.

Header image courtesy of Pixabay

Read more:
Five habits and mindsets we need to leave in 2017
How to save over P50,000 by the end of 2018
I had planner commitment issues, but I’m changing
Ten time management hacks I wish I’d known sooner

TAGS: apps Forest handpick health leep new year New Year's resolution nolisoli.ph pillow plant nanny PRODUCTIVITY spendee