Writing is difficult for many reasons. It’s hard work, takes real skill, and it is easy to lose sight of the goal. There are hundreds of thousands of barriers out there that will keep you from finishing your book, but none of them are as hard to overcome as poor time management. As a writer, time management is essential if you want to finish any book, ever.
Here are three simple tools that anyone with a smartphone can use to significantly increase their productivity by better management of their time. By downloading and actually using these tools you will never forget to return emails again, create to-do lists seamlessly, and keep a record of everything you do each day.
1: Mailbox: This is my new favorite app, and the most useful one that I have found for managing email. It has many advantages over the standard email app that comes with an iPhone, but here are my three favorites.
First, you can \”snooze\” any emails that aren’t top priority. This will let you concentrate on what needs to be done now without fearing you will lose track of other emails. This may not seem that important to you right now, it didn’t to me at first. Download it and try it, it will help immensely.
Second, you can easily add content to custom made lists. I sign up for multiple blogs to keep updated on business, writing, books, and more. It’s very easy to save content in custom lists now, and you can do it right from your phone.
Last, you can easily delete or archive emails with a simple swipe now. Keeps your inbox clean and free of any junk mail. (This app is free, but there is a waiting list for it. May take you awhile to download it.)
2: NudgeMail: This tool is not an app, and is extremely easy to sign up for and use. Whenever you send an email, if you want to be reminded that you sent it and have it bounce back to you at a certain time, you just add a simple address in the BCC part of the email. For instance, when I send communication to an author for the first time, I will add \”[email protected]\” in the BCC. Three days later, nudge mail will send it back to me. Use this, and never have another sent email get lost in the shuffle. There are endless options for when you want it kicked back to your, from two hours to 3 weeks to any date in the future. Check out more info here.
3: IDoneThis: It’s easy to lose track of what you are actually getting done each day, or prioritize the wrong thing. Sign up for this free service at IDoneThis.com. (Hint: make sure you sign up for the personal service, which is always free). Once a day, whenever you want, they will send you an email asking what you got done that day. You simply take 30 seconds to reply, and I Done This creates a calendar of what you are doing each day. This will provide some personal accountability to make sure you are writing and will give you an idea of what you are really spending your time on each week.
Bonus tip #1: Too techie for you? We have an article on the 5 best non-tech tools for authors here. My favorite analog tool is a [amazon_link id=\”B0006SVBO0\” target=\”_blank\” ]multipen[/amazon_link] – use it everyday, huge time saver.
Favorite Productivity Boosting Books:
4. [amazon_link id=\”1433513188\” target=\”_blank\” ]Leaders Who Last[/amazon_link]
Would love to know what tools you use as well, just add some ideas in the comments.