Productivity gets derailed by two virtues of modern living: technology and options. All the communication choices we have can hurt our efficiency - even if their purpose is to give us more hours in the day. Enter the time management app. This abundant category can help you track hours, spot inefficiencies, and even block distractions.
The only problem: Trying to sort through which one works for you can be itself a waste of time. "I find people are struggling with getting all these applications from these sources and they're trying to figure out how to integrate them into their world. People are overwhelmed," says Alix Longfellow, an organization and productivity consultant and member of the National Association of Professional Organizers. According to Longfellow, every person has a different organization style that works for them and that the best way to choose a time management app is by finding something that you find simple and efficient. She generally recommends programs and apps that offer big solutions, rather than having an app for every different task, like these ten great productivity apps.
The Pomodoro Technique is a favorite of many people determined to better manage their time. The basic concept revolves around setting a timer for 25 minutes, taking on a task for that whole time, then taking a 5 minute break. This chunk of time is called a "pomodoro" for the Italian word for tomato (because of tomato-shaped kitchen timers). After every four pomodoros, the breaks get longer and every time you finish a task, you can mark it off. The Focus Time app has timers that can be set to any work/break time schedule. It also gives you a star for every finished pomodoro and lets you look back on stats for your previous days. [$4.99; iOS]