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There’s no doubting the incredible advancements of computer technology: You can instantly connect with friends and relatives, get the latest news, and have immediate information access to research to educate yourself. The downside, however, is that there are more options for distractions – think of the thousands upon thousands of cat videos that pervade the internet now.

Thankfully, developers have taken it upon themselves to develop ways to keep you productive.  Apple’s “Handoff” feature uses Bluetooth to sync your iPhone, iPad, and Mac computer so that you can pick up wherever you leave off.  For example, you can begin typing an email on your iPhone, and finish and send it on your Mac. Another similar feature is “Reminders”, which allows you to create projects, grocery lists, appointments, etc. on any Apple device, and you can access them all and be reminded of them across all of your devices.

 

Third party developers have also created some apps that help improve your productivity, keep you on task, and manage your time more efficiently so that you can get your projects done faster and reclaim more time each day.  We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite productivity apps for mac, so download these and you can start being more productive than you are now:

#1 Rescue Time

https://exist.io/blog/time-tracking-apps/
Photo Courtesy of Exist

Carpe diem and seize the day, as they always say. What if you don’t have enough time in the day to seize in the first place? Everyone gets 24 hours each day, but it’s up to YOU to use every second to your advantage.  That’s where Rescue Time comes in. With this web-based software, you can track the time you spend on applications, websites, and other activities. You can then review the biggest time sucks later.  It’s good to get a baseline to see where your time is being spent.  

Do you browse Reddit and Facebook too much?  Do you spend more time reading and responding to emails than you realize? With Rescue Time, you can view percentages of where you spend time the most, set alerts to set a time limit on activities, even block websites outright to help prevent you from wasting time. How many times you end up watching more videos on Youtube than you need? Darn “Related Videos” and “Auto-Play” features…

#2 Evernote

http://lifehacker.com/5989980/ive-been-using-evernote-all-wrong-heres-why-its-actually-amazing
Photo Courtesy of Life Hacker

If you only start using one app to boost your productivity, make this one it.  Evernote won Inc.com’s company of the year for 2011, and has become such a cult status in Japan, Japanese bookstores literally have whole sections dedicated to it.

Evernote’s flagship icon is an elephant, and as the saying goes, “An elephant never forgets.” With this app, you can create and archive notes and lists, consisting of everything that you come across, from web excerpts to hand-written notes, and organize and access them in a more efficient way like never before.  If the thought of creating a smorgasbord of notes and links seems daunting, the beauty of Evernote is that you can tag important notes with keywords that hold significance to you, like “dog,” “work,” or “dinner ideas.” You don’t need to tag every single note, but, for example, searching for “dog” can pull up everything from your dog pictures to results of their last vet visit. You can even create to-do/follow-up lists so you can remember to get their annual rabies shot. You can even find the dog related notes that you’ve saved, like useful articles about flea and tick season, and dog parks nearby.

#3 Postbox

https://www.postbox-inc.com/get-started
Photo Courtesy of PostBox

 

Are you one of those busybodies that gets inundated with hundreds of emails? Is it difficult to sift through spam and non-time-sensitive emails to get to the important ones? Perhaps you have multiple email accounts across different platforms such as Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, and AOL. Postbox is designed to help alleviate that weight by consolidating and organizing all of your email. Like Evernote, you can tag emails to categorize your to-do and follow-up emails into smaller batches so you can prioritize and tackle them as you wish. You can even customize your views so you can view emails in a certain way, such as seeing only work-related emails from a specific team, or viewing all unread emails involving family.

 

#4 CheatSheet

https://www.postbox-inc.com/get-started
Photo Courtesy of Cheat Sheet

 

We all know the keyboard shortcuts for copy and paste (Command + C and Command + V), but do you know other super useful shortcuts to do things like taking a screenshot, emptying your trash, or looking up the definition of the currently highlighted word? CheatSheet stands at the ready to show you all available commands, including ones that you’ll discover and start using. The cool thing about this app is that it is application-specific, meaning whether you’re in Adobe Photoshop or Microsoft Word, holding down the Command key (a.k.a. the -Key) for a few moments will display a list of all keyboard shortcuts available at your disposal.  It’s incredibly useful for menu-heavy applications.

#5 PasswordWallet

https://www.intego.com/mac-security-blog/8-password-manager-options-for-mac-and-ios/
Photo Courtesy of Intego

 

You know that you need to come up with secure passwords, a different one for each account, but with so many caveats such as requiring special characters, numbers, and combinations, it makes it that much harder to remember them all.  Never fear, PasswordWallet is here!

 

Easily store and backup all of your passwords in one convenient place. The software can even remember the myriad of usernames you own, and auto-fill forms on websites for you. PasswordWallet even includes a password generator to give you the strongest, most secure passwords like T$l1mo8?# and C&$h#3_2, and you don’t even have to remember them.  All you have to do is remember the one master password (or fingerprint scan) that you set to unlock your entire PasswordWallet.

 

These apps for your Mac should rejuvenate your productivity and help you save time. Don’t miss out – take advantage of them and optimize your time.  Impress your boss, impress your friends, impress yourself.  Of course, there are hundreds more apps that can boost your productivity – what are some of your favorites?