I’m a huge advocate of using technology to improve your life. I personally have a circulation of mobile apps that I rely on to improve the quality of my day and interactions with people. One of my favorite discoveries is this app called Headspace.
This year, I finally got to start writing for my blog. It’s something I’ve been meaning to do for quite some time now. So far, it’s been really insightful. I think it’s an amazing way to share my life with family and friends while developing skills I need for work.
I’ve had some great hits as well as some epic flops in the 20+ stuff I’ve written so far. Maintaining my blog has been a really important part of my personal growth this year. I feel like I’m still crafting my writing style and finding my voice.
I understand now why people hire copywriters or why authors take long to finish a book. Writing looks easy but it’s not. There is so much that goes into a single page or paragraph. It really is an art form that takes years to master.
I’m just about about to wrap up my second year of teaching. I’m happy to say that it is still what I want to do for the rest of my life. However, just because I love it doesn’t mean it comes easy.
Like many other professions, teaching has its own set of challenges — many of which people don’t realize or truly appreciate. I certainly did not learn of these things until I got into it. Here are some of the biggest challenges that come with the job:
“Go and chase your dreams” is a popular piece of advice heard in many toasts, workshops, and speeches. It is also reckless and disconnected with the reality of life.
We all aspire to be or do something extraordinary. We all want to make our own money, win a championship, or perform and live out an art. There is no shortage of dreams. There is however a lack of empathy when you fault someone for being unable to do what they are most passionate about.
Chasing your dreams is a privilege — one that many people don’t have or will ever be able to afford.
You are the average of the five apps you spend the most time with. Yes, it’s the wrong quote but it still makes a lot of sense!
There are millions of apps available at your disposal. Having the right ones can help you live a more productive life. Here are my favorite ones:
Asana – My team just recently moved to this new project management app (RIP Wunderlist). It was a little confusing at the start but I’m learning to love it. I can see what everyone on my team is working on and how far off we are from finishing a given project.
Slack – Slack rounds up the apps we use at work. It’s intuitive and very powerful. The best function for me is being able to seamlessly create channels for specific functions or projects. We’re getting the paid version soon.
Wally – When I want to feel bad about my spending habits, Wally is my guy. This is my go-to personal finance application. The functionality suits the way I like tracking numbers. I also especially like how easy it is to use and how simple the categories and breakdowns are.
PayMaya – The future of finance is online and PayMaya is leading the charge here in the Philippines. PayMaya allows you to make many financial transactions online — from shopping to paying bills. Load up your card, save up time, and watch your productivity skyrocket (while your wallet cries in Spanish)
FOR PERSONAL GOALS
Productive – This is one of my all-time favorite apps. Productive has helped me track and build good habits the last two years. It allows you to track up to 5 things on its free subscription. For example, you can track how many times in the week you read a book or went to the gym. Tracking these things can help you turn them into permanent routines.
Google Docs – Who would’ve thought Google Docs would still be saving my butt after college. I use Google Docs for all sorts of typing and note-taking. The most prominent document being my Life Tracker. I slightly sorta have a tracker of my life neatly organized and laid out on a spreadsheet. Finances, personal goals, timelines, and calendars. Yes, I have one of these things. You don’t?
Penzu – I never thought I’d ever get into journaling yet here I am with three years worth of entries on my favorite private journal. I talk about anything and everything — from major conquests to my silly woopsies.
FOR MY DAD BOD
MyFitnessPal – I’ve dropped a significant amount of weight this year primarily through counting my calories and my macronutrients. MyFitnessPal helps me keep tabs on what I’m eating. I don’t have to think twice about that ice cream sandwich.
Nike+RunClub – I’m a frustrated athlete. I really wish I had the physical gifts to dominate a sport. However, the most I was given was a huge bum for watching sports instead. Good thing there’s this amazing app by Nike that allows me to track how great I am at doing 7-minute runs!
FOR MY PEACE OF MIND
Medium – I’ve fallen in love with writing because of this app. There are so many great articles here on every subject you can think of. When I need to understand a topic better or find rebuttals to preexisting beliefs, I turn to Medium.
Podcasts – Everyone close to me knows how much I love my podcasts. I’m happy I discovered it because my life has never been the same since. There’s no excuse now for learning something new because podcasts allow you to learn something on the go.
About two years ago, I wrote down all the excuses I made for not completing a task or project. It was a short 2-day experiment. Yes, I was that bored.
Initially, I just wanted to see what excuses I made most often. What I learned however was much more profound than “how many times do I blame the weather”.
My list of excuses changed my life forever.
Back in college, I found myself in an environment where sleeping less than six hours a day was a source of pride. I thought studying longer meant increasing my chances of success.
I happily paraded my ability to study or write a paper until after midnight because hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard. Or at least, that’s what I told myself.