Recently, I had a conversation with a friend about the tools and resources I use in every day life. He seemed intrigued and asked if I would write down all of the tools and send them to him. I figured if he was interested in these tools, perhaps others would be, too. Which is why I wrote this post.
I’m no top-level executive or a technology guru, but I love using tools that make life easier and more efficient. Below you can find some of them.
[callout]Note: None of these are affiliate links. I don’t make money if you buy or click on any of the links in this post. [/callout]
I love listening to podcasts and I love this app. It’s not free, but I think it’s worth every penny.
This is what I use to write all of my articles, though I’ve also heard good things about ByWord. I like Ulysses, though it’s kind of hard to mess up a writing app. All you need is, well, a keyboard and a screen. Where writing apps go wrong, I think, is when they’re too cute — when there’s too many unnecessary features. I like Ulysses because of its simplicity. I’m glad I bought it before they moved to a monthly payment system.
You Need A Budget (Budgeting)
I tried Mint and didn’t like it, which is probably somewhat my fault. It just felt like Mint kept calculating things incorrectly, and it sort of promotes passivity, which doesn’t keep me accountable and help me as much as it could. I like YNAB because of its excellent mobile app, and the many financial lessons and ideas they have on their site. I also appreciate how they force you to update numbers regularly, a process that doesn’t take up that much time.
Evernote (Information Storage)
With all of the technological innovations we’ve seen in the past several years, Evernote might be one of my favorite things. This is what I use to store and track information. I refer to it several times a day.
This is where I get most of my photos for my articles. The photos are free and they don’t require attribution. It’s helpful if you ever need a free, beautiful photo of anything.
Google Calendar (Scheduling)
I’m sure you probably use it, too. This is where I schedule my meeting, appointments, and events.
I got the idea to use Todoist from Tim Challies’ excellent book, Do More Better. Like many of these tools, there is an upfront time commitment that you need to make before you’re able to use it well. At first, you may have to watch a few tutorials or read Todoist’s knowledge base for more info, but if you commit to learning how to use it well, it can be a powerful tool. It’s free, but I recommend the premium version (which is only $3 a month, or something like that). The reminders that come with the premium feature are worth the price alone.
Feedly (Blog reading)
I only follow a few blogs via email, and the rest via RSS. Feedly allows me to quickly scan the 100+ blogs I follow. If the title of the article gets my attention, I may read it. If not, I’ll just keep scanning. As opposed to being bombarded by hundreds of emails from bloggers, Feedly allows me to read their blog without usually having to visit their site. It’s an efficient trade-off.
Pocket (Online reading)
Sometimes I come across an article that I want to read, but time fails me to read it in that moment. Instead of emailing it to myself (which would be too cumbersome), I just save it to pocket and pocket saves it for me. Then, whenever I’m ready to read the article, all I have to do it visit pocket and it’s saved for me.
Where my wife and I save important files.
Buffer (Social Media)
What I use to schedule many of my social media posts. I think Co-Schedule might have more advanced features, but it’s a little too expensive for what I use social media for. Buffer gets the job done.
Logos (Bible Software)
I use the free version, but will switch to a paid version when I’m done with seminary (Lord willing). Lots of my classmates use Accordance, and I’ve also heard good things about BibleWorks. Some sort of Bible Software is extremely valuable, especially if you’re a pastor.
I use this to edit some of my writings. It’s not perfect, but it’s better than nothing.
Venmo (Sharing Money)
If you’re out with a friend, and they pick up a tab because you forgot your wallet, you don’t have to wait a few days to pay them back. With Venmo, you can share money right away. I’ve even heard of a landlord allowing their tenants to use this as a payment method. It’s safe and super easy to use.
I hope you find a tool or two that willno benefit your life. Of course, there’s more tools I can name. But this should provide a good start. We should praise God for the common grace of technology and seek to use technology to the benefit of our lives and the glory of God.
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