“There’s an app for that.”
Anymore there is truly an app for everything! I’ve downloaded many in the past, most that had the potential to be very useful, but like everything for me, out-of-sight, out-of-mind. And even more that that, again it comes down to the habits we create…or don’t. An app is only as useful as you make it be.
Well, I’ve stumbled upon a few in the past couple of months that I think are going to be very helpful for me going forward in 2017, and I wanted to share them in hopes that they can also be useful for you!
A few bloggers and I started a Facebook group to support each other in our blogging endeavors, and it is from one of those lovely ladies that I learned about Trello. I’m sure that I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of how much this little baby can do, but if you have a job or your own business where you need to plan projects, or if you need a good place (besides a notebook) to really outline your goals and the steps you need to take to reach them, then you should try Trello!
Their website describes a Trello board as “a list of lists, filled with cards, used by you and your team. It’s a lot more than that, though. Trello has anything you need to organize projects of every size.”
The above pic is just a Google image that I found that’s a simple view of what you can do. I am currently using Trello for planning blog posts and other work. I have a board titled “Blog Posts”, for example. The first list on that board is “Post Ideas”. Second is “In Progress”, followed by “Need to do”, and finally “Done”. You can slide the little cards around to reorder them or move them from one list to another, making it a great place to keep track of any goals.
If you took my inspiration the other day to post your goals where you can see them every day, Trello would be a great place to keep track of the specific tasks and steps that you need to do to accomplish those goals. For example, I want to lose 15 pounds. My Trello board could be “fitness goals”. The first list could be “healthy eating” and cards in that list could include increase water intake, eliminate sugar and processed food, and to pack my lunch for work. The second list could be “exercise” and the cards might say Jazzercise four times a week, and stretch and tone for 10 minutes every night. The final list could be where I mark successful milestones, or where I list rewards for different achievements. The possibilities are endless!
I also have boards for listing my daily routine, daily work I need to do on the blog, and a master to-do list (which needs to be a post all of its own!).
Within a card you can add due dates, file attachments, checklists and my favorite, labels! You can add people to a board, have discussions with your team, and there are power-ups available, like the Calendar, which allows you to have a calendar view of all your projects and due dates!
Like I said, I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface, so check it out yourself! Oh, and did I mention that it’s free? (The version I’m using, anyway. An upgrade is available.)
If you’re a fan of Dave Ramsey, you might already know about Every Dollar. If you’re on a debt-slaying journey as we are, then you might want to learn more about it. Every Dollar is a budget app where you can tell every dollar where to go. If one of your goals is to be intentional about your money, this is a great app for you!
My husband and I are finally trying to work together to slash our debts. I won’t get into a lot of detail today (maybe soon), but like many Americans we have debts that are adversely impacting how we want to live. I’m not talking about having a bigger house and newer cars and two boats and a Caribbean vacation every year. I’m talking about getting to choose a career we love, not a job we have to take because of financial need. I’m talking about the inability to bless others in every way that we want to. And yes, we’d like to make some upgrades to our small home as well and maybe take a vacation more often.
In addition to reading Dave Ramsey’s book and this one, we started utilizing Every Dollar. This budget app allows you to plan and track your income and expenses, download transactions from your bank and then categorize as you choose (or you can manually enter transactions), and since you can have it on your phone, you and your spouse can both have it available when you need to see it.
This app is also free but in this case I did upgrade to the Plus version to be able to have our bank transactions automatically download (though I’m still hitting a few snaffoos getting that to work). I figured that the time saved and the insurance that I’d be able to stay on top of the app and our budget was worth the investment (I think it was $99 for a year).
I learned about eMeals through Dave Ramsey’s site and it was also mentioned in the book I’m currently reading. While not a free app, this was another area that I thought my money would be well spent. In a lot of ways for me, time is money. And if I don’t have time to do the things that will ultimately save me money and there’s an app that can help me along, I’m all for it. Meal planning is another one of those areas.
I know that we will both save money and be healthier if I plan our meals each week. Even more money is saved when I take time to scour the ads, check for coupons and online deals, and utilize other money-saving apps like Ibotta. But all that takes time and if you’re a busy working mom like me (even if you stay home…I’ve been there, too!), time just never seems to be our friend. So instead, we don’t get to plan and then suppertime rolls around and everyone’s famished and cranky and you don’t have anything in the kitchen and no time to cook anyway so you give into fast food even though you gave up both eating out and eating crap all in the name of your New Year’s goals. Can I get an “amen!”???
Well, if that sounds like you, then maybe try to welcome eMeals into your life. With eMeals you choose what meal plan you want (you can even customize by diet preference, like Clean Eating, Paleo and Gluten Free), as well as customize it for your family size, and each week you will have new meal plans created for you, complete with grocery list and recipes! Depending on what store you use, the list may even be coordinated with your store ad! Choose the meals that appeal to you (I choose a couple and then use some of our tried-and-true favorites or use up what’s in the freezer/pantry/fridge for the other days), add the ingredients to the automated grocery list, and then the time you would have spent planning meals can now be spent looking at ads and coupons so that you can save a bit when you go to the store!
These apps are still new to me but so far I’ve been very happy with each of them and the potential they have for making my life easier! If you have used any of these apps (or have a suggestion for another), please share in the comments below!