One of the best ways to become productive is to invest your time in building habits. I’ve written about this a number of times. Today, I’ll show you (or, for some of you, give a reminder about) the four stages of competence. This model clearly describes how one can build a habit. Read on to learn more about this model.
Today I am writing about a very concrete challenge I had – remembering resolutions that I wanted to fulfil with apps. This will be a brief post. The idea I want to describe is so simple that I am ashamed I didn’t figure it out earlier!
Imagine the situations below:
- I want study new vocabulary daily. I found a great app for that, so for sure I’ll use it.
- I want to do a workout every day. I have an app that lists all the exercises I have to do and tells me how often to do them.
- I want to record the number of calories I’ve eaten just after each meal. There is this great app that will help me do it.
I’ve been in each of these situations many times. I hate to admit this, but I failed in most of them. In the beginning I was opening those apps every day, and then every few days. After a few weeks I forgot about them. They could have been so helpful… If only I’d used them!
Usually when I install a new app, I put it in a folder with similar apps. I did exactly the same with the apps from the above examples. They were added to the “Education” and “Health” folders. When I wanted to use them, I had to scroll to the screen with these folders and then find the chosen app in the folder. And then I could use the app.
Recently I changed my approach to organizing my apps. Apps I want to use every day, for example for learning new vocabulary, I place in the dock (bottom of the screen, visible from all views). That way I can see the app all the time. It makes me feel guilty if I don’t use it from time to time. Since I’ve place these kinds of apps in the dock, I’ve started using them several times each day. This is a simple and efficient solution to the problem I described at the beginning of this post.
Now I open the Brainscape app much more often and, as a result, I’ve learned many new words lately.
P.S. Brainscape is an app that allows you to create flashcards and study them in a smart way. Its algorithm chooses how often you see each flashcard based on how well you remember it. It’s a very efficient way of learning.