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Productivity

10 Apps You Should Try to Boost Your Productivity in 2017

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10 Apps You Should Try to Boost Your Productivity in 2017

Eliminate distractions. Secure passwords. Manage projects. Save articles. View highlights. Boost your productivity in 2017 with these tools!

In his helpful book “Do More Better: A Practical Guide to Productivity,” Tim Challies explains why productivity matters – it is about stewardship and God's glory:

“Productivity is effectively stewarding your gifts, talents, time, energy, and enthusiasm for the good of others and the glory of God.”

This is why Christians should be interested in productivity. Not doing more for the sake of it, but to do good for others and to make much of God.

“Don’t try to do it all: Do more good. Better.” – Tim Challies

I'm an early adopter and I enjoy trying out new tools and refining them down to find the best. As we approach a new year, here's 10 that I recommend you try in 2017 (and most of them are free!).

You can explore more like this in ‘Recommended Tools for Christian Ministry‘.

1Password

I have been using 1Password for years. It helps me create secure passwords, and then saves me hours each year by making it simple to log-in to my numerous accounts with just ‘one password'. It's not the only password manager out there, but I've used it for a long time and it keeps getting better. Even if you don't use 1Password, get yourself a password manager in 2017.

1password

Price: From $2.99 per month.

Asana

I’ve been using Asana for more than 3 years to manage projects at work. I’ve tried many other collaborative tools for project management, but I keep coming back to Asana. It's a great tool for churches, too.

asana

Price: Free! Paid accounts also available.

Bookcision

If you highlight books in Kindle and want an easy way to access these highlights, get Bookcision.

Price: Free!

Canva

Canva is a tool that makes it really easy for you to create quality graphics. Posters, invitations, brochures, infographics – if it can be designed, you'll probably be able to design it with Canva!

canva

Price: Free!

Freedom

Do you find yourself easily distracted when you're online? I do. Freedom helps you block distractions and get work done. And if porn is a distraction, take a look as these 5 tools for accountability online.

Price: From $2.42 per month.

Grammarly

Remember when spell check in Microsoft Word seemed like magic?! We've come a long way since then and Grammarly is one of a new batch of tools that can help improve your writing.

Grammarly

Price: Free! Paid accounts also available.

Highly

In a similar category to Bookcision, Highly enables you to highlight snippets from around the web and easily find them again.

Price: Free!

Meetingbird

I haven't tried Meetingbird yet, but I'm adding it to my toolbox for 2017 to help me organise and run better meetings.

meetingbird

Price: Free! Paid accounts also available.

Notion

Notion is difficult to describe because it is so flexible and so powerful. I continue to find uses for Notion both at home and at work and it will be a big ‘go to’ tool for me in 2017. A similar tool (that I haven’t tried yet but it looks promising) is Nuclino.

Price: Free! Paid accounts also available.

Paperform

I just discovered Paperform today – an intutive way to create beautiful forms – including forms to receive payments. Typeform is also a wonderful tool for creating user-friendly surveys, forms and more.

Here's a quick survey I created using Paperform to demonstrate how it looks (and to get your feedback!).

Price: From $9 per month.

Polymail

There are many different email clients out there, but Polymail has some unique and helpful features that sets it apart from the competition. And while we're talking about email, Unroll.Me is a useful tool too!

Price: Free! Paid accounts also available.

Raindrop

Where do you save all those links you come across throughout the day? I have Raindrop is an ‘All in one bookmarks manager’ that looks great and is easy to use.

Price: Free! Paid accounts also available.

Speaker Alert

This one sneaks in at #11, but as it doesn't fit the theme of productivity, I added it in as an extra! Speaker Alert is a speech timing application inspired by Toastmasters to keep your speeches (or sermons) from running overtime. And saving the time of your listeners is good for their productivity, so maybe it does fit after all!

Price: Free!

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Jeremy Sarber

    December 8, 2016 at 12:47 am

    I can hardly imagine life before Grammarly. I can’t underestimate its usefulness to bloggers and writers. (Excuse me while I let Grammarly check this comment for mistakes and improvements.)

  2. Jarrod

    December 8, 2016 at 11:57 am

    Thanks Steven! With Asana, do you work in a team environment? Is it too much for an individual? I’ve tried SO MANY task lists over the years and I’m currently with Todoist (multi-platform, clean look, plenty of options without being cumbersome).
    Another good app for productivity is Toggl. It’s a timer that can be used for tracking client- and project-based work. However, I find the power is having the timer sitting on my computer screen showing how much time I’ve spent on the current task. It helps me stay focussed on the current task rather than going from one thing to the next and forgetting what I intended to do.
    Thanks for all your work!

  3. Steven Kryger

    December 9, 2016 at 2:31 pm

    Hi Jarrod,

    Yes, I use Asana in a team environment and it works really well there. I think it would be overkill on a personal level. I’ve tried lots of these tools – Omnifocus, Wunderlist, Things, Nozbe, Todoist, etc. I’m actually now using Apple’s ‘Reminders’. It’s so simple – but it’s working!

    Thanks for the Toggl tip – I’ll check it out!

  4. Steven Kryger

    December 9, 2016 at 2:31 pm

    Thanks Jeremy. What other tools have you found useful as a blogger?

  5. Dan

    December 9, 2016 at 3:42 pm

    I’ll second Polymail for Mac, I’m always trying out new email clients and I think it’s the current front runner. I use Spark on iOS though.

  6. Steven Kryger

    December 9, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    I’ve tried Spark too, and it’s really nice, but the extra features of Polymail (meeting invitations and templates, in particular) move it to the top.

  7. Kevin Chan

    December 12, 2016 at 12:43 pm

    For those whose main craft is working with words, I’ve found that the Hemingway Editor (http://www.hemingwayapp.com) is a must-use. Similar to Grammarly, it also grades the readability of your prose, and so I’m always using it to check my clarity, whether for sermons, online content, etc.

    Well worth a look.

  8. Pingback: DBG Spotlight (12-7-16) - Christian Blogs - Delivered By Grace

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