Resolutions require only words. Results require action.
It's that time of the year again when resolutions abound. From my experience, many of the reasons our resolutions fail is because they are too generic They lack specificity, accountability and time deadlines. A resolution to "lose weight" is so open ended that it's hard for your brain to process how to do it. How much weight? By when? What are the steps I would take? Who keeps me accountable?
One of the reasons why I started this blog was to keep myself accountable for all of the personal projects I was doing. My goal was to complete a monthly project related to optimal health, the environment, minimalism and so many others. So today, I want to go over the top 8 apps that have allowed me to complete a lot of projects. I hope they will help you live more optimally in the New Year. These apps allow a lot of tracking and make reaching small incremental goals more of a game. The data also encourages you to analyze which action is going well versus not. Without further ado, here are the Top 8 Apps I currently recommend. For less than $50 for the New Year, you can find
This post contains affiliate links. See Disclosures for details.
Goal: Be Healthier
Through my personal reading and experiments this past year, I really started believing in the power of fasting. To keep me accountable, I use an app called Zero which simply tracks the hours I've fasted. It's an easy to use Start Fasting - Stop Fasting app. I've used it for over 4 months now and while it's a very simple app, the simple act of watching the fasting hours count up keeps me motivated to hit my goals of 16 hours.
If one of your goals is to be healthier in the New Year, check out some of the recent studies showing how fasting helps your cells grow and get rid of old cells. See the two posts to the right for more resources, books and videos.
My friend Lauren uses the Vora app on Android and is pretty happy with it. Again, another simple app to track something small. Fasting creates emotional, physical, spiritual and psychological stress so doer beware, but after doing 16 hours and a 57 hour fast, my goal in the New Year will be something for at least 5 days of fasting. It will be a great way to detox and get into a new plane.
Goal: Be More Mindful & Focused
App: Oak or Headspace
No doubt that meditation has a lot of benefits, but we don't need to all be sitting gurus to take full advantage of a clear mind. With apps like Oak and Headspace, you'll have the opportunity to participate in some guided meditation. While there are some people out there who can meditate with a clear mind, for many of us, the goal of meditation is to learn to coral our thoughts. Our thoughts are more powerful than we think and what we think has huge impact on our well being.
Oak is a FREE app on meditation and breating. It was built by the same person as the Zero fasting app above. Simple to use and it tracks how often you've meditated. It will sync to Apple Health for a greater picture of your overall Health. I watched how Oak got built as Kevin Rose provided full transparency to the creation via Slack and Facebook groups and was awesome to see an app build in process. I also like the breathing component because we take for granted our breathe sometimes and this one forces you to take a lot of good, deep breaths to help calm your nerves and get good old oxygen pumping into your system. Check it out! (This one is only available on IOS, sorry Androids.)
Once you're ready to move on to the big kid club, check out Headspace. It's a subscription based meditation app. Similarly provides guided meditation with lots of different topics to choose from. Training for a marathon, planning to have baby, stressing out at work, this app has many different meditation options to focus your mind. Each meditation session will build on each other so you'll have some fundamentals before you get too advanced. Similar to Oak, it also tracks your progress along with the hours you've taken to be more mindful. Can you imagine taking a look at the end of year and seeing that you've purposely taking a few hundred hours being mindful instead of rushing around? Headspace is around $8 a month for a year long plan. That's the price of 3 espressos. Great gift overall and an easy win for the New Year! Also, check out if your work health plan will re-imburse you for the subscription since it's related to health.
Goal: Be More Stylish and Save Money
This is for both men and women. If you've been feeling like your closet is bulging, yet you still find yourself exclaiming "I have nothing to wear" OR you keep wearing the same thing, then Cladwell is for you. This app has tenets in minimalism which is why I love it. Spend more time doing more exciting things, than organizing and searching through your closets. I mean seriously. Take those fancy clothes out to somewhere fancy, don't let them suffocate in your closet.
Cladwell is an app that allows you to take inventory of your closet and clothes. It provides outfit recommendations and allows you to log your outfits. Logging outfits allows you to get data on what specific items you use most often, which ones make you feel good and ultimately informs how you make buying decisions on the future. The goal too is to start buying quality pieces that last long, fit well and pair with everything. Not convinced yet? Check out the post to the right to see how I'm using it.
Cladwell is around $4 a month for a year's subscriptions. That's like the price of a well made, long lasting t-shirt that you can get away with wearing almost everyday. ;) Either use it for yourself or gift it to a fashionista who needs some closet help. In the end, you'll probably save more money as it will dissuade you from buying trendy, fast fashion items that don't pair well with the rest of your closet or break down on the first wash.
Goal: Be More Intentional and Thankful
App: Five Minute Journal
We absolutely take for granted what we have because we see it everyday. The Five Minute Journal is another simple app that allows you to take time throughout your day to be intentional and be thankful for all that you have. Sometimes, I fluctuate between actually writing in a notebook versus using this app to record events, images and generally track some of my days.
The Five Minute Journal prompts you a few questions at the start of your day and the at the end of the day. Prompting you for things you are grateful for, things you will do to make today great (keeps you focused), things that made today amazing and a retrospection how to make things better. It's basically your personal diary. Great way to track your days and remember what you've witnessed, experienced and call up memories. It's $5 flat cost to download and use the app. By appreciating the small day-to-day events, won't need as much to buy or do to make you happy. This is what most of us need in our ever busy world.
Goal: Be More Financially Stable
App: Personal Capital
I read somewhere that one way to start thinking about money in a completely new way is to replace "money" with the word "freedom" in any context where money is the subject. I can write about minimalism and zero waste and optimal health until I am blue in the face, but I think I would do a disservice if I don't mention money as a core component of this. For many of us, we are caught in the cycle of eat, work, spend. We work long hours to buy things we don't need even though we already have a house full of stuff we can't even close our closets and garage. This is one of the reasons why I have Personal Capital here. It is a service that links ALL of your financial accounts into one place. Their app provides a great view of your current Net Worth. Your Net Worth is important because it show if you've been taking care of yourself. I love this app and the service because of the holistic view it provides. It even has a view into the investment fees you are paying. If your goal this year is to wrangle your finances, this could help you keep an eye out on your spending, saving and investment.
Personal Capital does offer financial services which I do not use. You don't need it and are not forced to use their wealth management service, but keep that in mind that with a freemium model comes certain attachments. I continue to those their platform and encourage others to do the same at it gives a very good overview of where you are financially. Understand that money means freedom and security for you and your family. Get $20 bucks if you open a Personal Capital account and link an investment account. It's worth it to see how your investments are being distributed.
Oh and get that Travel Fund started!
I hope this has been helpful. If you interested in making 2018 your best year yet, sign-up for the monthly newsletter and read more about some of the projects I have going to help you live more. When you enter your information below, you'll get your hands on my "Guide to More Life".