“It’s about drive, it’s about power…Put in the work, put in the hours and take what’s ours.”

“It’s about drive, it’s about power…Put in the work, put in the hours and take what’s ours.”
Photo by Eden Constantino / Unsplash

Hey there–

Happy new year! I should probably apologise for the late wishes. The email service I usually use would just not cooperate, and the holiday season did not allow me to work. But guess what, my dad would not let it slide. He asked me to be consistent. So here I am, with the tenth issue of my newsletter where I’ll primarily be talking about productivity.

Well, I like being honest when I write this newsletter. So, I am gonna tell you something straight up. I have had a lot of productivity slumps in the past year. In fact, the longest one I’ve had lasted 16 years and I’m still waiting for it to get over :) I am sure you’ve also had several periods of unproductivity, days where you’ve just felt like watching your favourite sitcom on Netflix. We studied online the past year– and eh, it wasn’t the best experience. Let’s be honest, all of us ended up doing our assignments 5 minutes before the deadline. But some days we really took The Rock seriously and followed his mantra “It’s about drive, it's about power…put in the work, put in the hours and take what’s ours.” Yeah, we had days where we ended up working tirelessly. Over the course of 2021, all of us have shifted to the online realm of classes and work. Even now, we often find ourselves distracted by our laptops and phones. We always plan to change that, but most of us don’t use the right tools. We just end up using the most complicated solution out there, and then we struggle to get work done because we are overwhelmed. So I am gonna help you with just that! Introducing the best apps to supercharge your productivity in 2022 for students.

Oh also, I am gonna keep this edition simple and sound because the key to overcoming productivity resistance is simplicity and optimisation. You’ve probably heard of most of these apps but never used them effectively. That's exactly what I will cater to.

Google Calendar

This is probably the most used tool in the corporate world. You must be wondering how students can utilise this. It’s pretty simple actually! Management of deadlines, tasks and planning your study sessions. Google Calendar is simple and free to use. Just head over to calendar.google.com to get started. Now, you need to understand that you can plan your days here. Keeping it uncluttered is the key. All you need to do here is log on and block the time period where you want to study; undisturbed. All you have to do is double click on a time slot and enter the event details: the date, time and place. Make sure it doesn’t overlap with any events. Basically, managing your time. As for me, I have scheduled all my classes and personal events (I have hidden them in this screenshot) Plus, all the red colours you see are my assignment deadlines. This way, I am always on top of my work! Overwhelmed? Wondering where to start? It’s not that complicated. Just double click anywhere you want to create an event, schedule it and follow the timetable. I particularly like Google Calendar because of its fluidity and versatility. However, you have to make sure you stick to what you have created. You can use an infinite number of apps, but at the end of the day, you have to be conscious about the choice you are making. Whether to study or to not study. Go check this tool out extensively here.

Task Manager

This is probably the most spoken about type of application on the internet. Task managers! Plenty of them too- a never-ending labyrinth. Apps range from complex all-in-ones like Notion, to simpler task managers like Google Tasks. I have tried way too many for my own liking and have never made peace with any, but I have two personal favourites. Both of them are paid; TeuxDeux and Things 3. Things 3 is probably the world’s best-looking to-do list application with an incredibly magical UI and sync. The unfortunate part is that currently, it is only available for Apple users. And it is very expensive! Things 3 has quite a lot of features that do the job perfectly and help you plan your schedule. I would recommend Thing 3 for anyone who is working on various projects and needs a centralised app to manage everything. The other app is TeuxDeux. At TeuxDeux, they have a simple philosophy of creating a web-based application as simple as paper. And they have succeeded. They are probably the simplest to-do app that allows you to get things done with ease. It is simple, sleek, inexpensive and gets the job done with minimal effort. If you are wondering why I like TeuxDeux, it is because it allows me to plan all my tasks based on the day of the week. This streamlines the whole process and makes it so easy to use. One of the most underrated features of this app is that it emails you a list of what you need to get done every morning or whatever time you like. To me, that is remarkable and so helpful. Well done Team TeuxDeux, you have created a compelling product!

A simple note-taking and documents application

You may have heard Ali Abdaal and other productivity YouTubers talking about how they take notes of their 12.9 inch, top-of-the-line iPad Pro. Well not everyone has that sorta tech right? That doesn’t mean you can’t be productive. You just need to find an app that works right for you here. But please, regardless of what you do, don’t end up with Microsoft Word. It's trash :) No lies, it's ugly and is really slow. Many YouTubers recommend Notion. Well yeah, it may be one heck of an app but are you sure you want to use Notion? According to me, Notion can be overwhelming for beginners because of the number of features it offers. Don’t get me wrong, Notion is beautifully crafted. But it may not be the best solution for you. I would recommend something more fundamental and better looking. Apple notes to the rescue! Apple Notes stands out because of its modern and functional design. I love Apple Notes because I can just open the app quickly, jot down a random point from class and shut my laptop. The whole note will save and sync onto my other Apple products. So I can pick up exactly where I left off. It is so simple and yet unique. Doing homework? Need to open .docx files? I personally recommend Pages. Pages offers a simple yet functional design just like Apple Notes. You can open Word files, edit them and then export them back to Word, which is so convenient and underrated. Plus, the app is free! Pages also has a unique design language with really good inbuilt SVG type illustrations that make your document look a whole lot better. Pages also allows you to have some really cool customisation options! Check it out!

Oof, that was a lot of content to digest. But I’m if guessing you made it to the end because you liked this issue. Consider sharing this issue with your friends and family if you liked it :) I know the ending seemed kinda abrupt but I’m supposed to be a tech guy, after all. So cut me some slack, cool? I’ll catch you next time! Until then, stay safe and make sure you update your tech.

Guess whose Dad got pissed when I didn’t publish on the due date?