By Averri Liggins, CEO of Black Women Moguls
When you are a savvy entrepreneur who wears multiple hats, it is easy to become overwhelmed and frustrated. Using the right tools and resources is essential in keeping you on track to achieve your goals. Using systems has allowed me to manage my business and personal life using my phone. And you can do it too. Here are five apps I use to keep my sanity when organizing my day-to-day life.
A recent app I have added to my phone is Prism, a bill tracker that enables me to manage my expenses and track my upcoming bills. Before Prism, I would manually write each bill and the due date in my planner. Looking back, that was not the most efficient way to keep track of my financial operations. Daily, I found myself checking to see what bills were due and whether they were paid. It also became a hassle to write my bills each month and make sure I did not overlook any in my planner.
Now with Prism, all I have to do is input my recurring bills once. Instead of checking my planner manually, an automatic reminder notifies me when a bill comes up. Once the bill is paid, I click the “mark as paid” button instead of crossing it out in my planner. If a bill is not marked, the app sends a friendly reminder to ensure it is paid. Talk about a time saver.
2. Daily Planner
Daily Planner is a goal and habit tracker that reminds you to accomplish specific tasks. I use the free version of this app, which allows me to set three goals for the day. When I achieve my goal, it marks the time I accomplish it. If I do not complete my goal, the app gives me several reminders throughout the day until I do. Sometimes all I need is a regular reminder to keep me motivated and hold me accountable. When you want to start a new habit, such as journaling, exercising, or even taking a daily nap, you can easily create your action plan with Daily Planner.
3. Google Docs
If you are not using the Google Suite products, you are certainly missing out. I use Google Docs to draft, edit, and store my content, marketing calendar and business information. Now that the Google Docs app is downloaded to my phone (you can also download Google Drive), I can access any vital information I need without lugging my laptop around. Last week, I was working on writing my book while waiting for the doctor to see me. It is a handy app to maintain notes and jot down any spur-of-the-moment ideas.
Trello is my favorite tool to use for project management. While I mostly use the laptop version, the app is fully capable on the go. Along with my CRM system, I use Trello to keep track of my client’s progress, deliverables and business processes. I also like to use this platform for my “brain dump” to capture the many tasks I need to accomplish. Therefore, if I am away from home, I have no excuse not to have consistent results even when my computer is not with me.
This app is a new addition to my systems management, and so far I love using it. In Timebloc, you schedule your daily tasks by the hour. Before this app, I would delegate my time using Google notes. However, it would be overwhelming to see the many tasks for the day in this format. I found myself repeatedly checking my notes to see what was next. Once I completed a task, I would erase it in order to only show my remaining to-dos. This was problematic if I ever wanted to see what I had already accomplished.
With Timebloc, I manage my time more efficiently and stay on track. When it is time for my next scheduled task, the app reminds me of when to move on. You can add your daily routine, and it automatically populates your tasks each day based on your specifications. I also like that I can refer back to the previously accomplished activities, which makes me feel motivated and productive.
Building systems to manage your life is a process. But even small changes can make a significant difference in how you organize your time and business. Now I want to hear from you. What apps do you use to help manage your life and which app do you think you will add?
About the author: Averri Liggins is the CEO of Black Women Moguls, a consulting agency that helps women entrepreneurs increase their visibility and connections to generate profit and multiple streams of income.