The beginning of a New Year is such a wonderful time. It’s an opportunity for renewal, reinvention, and re-focusing. This year I took to my iPhone / iPad to organize my goals, thoughts, and plans for the upcoming year. Here are the top 5 Apps that can do the same for you!
Mint is a fantastic tool for organizing your money, spending and setting budgets. We’ve been an avid user of Mint for over 5 years. We have many budgets setup and log in frequently to categorize our spending to see how our budgets are doing. We re-evaluate our budgets every quarter for trends and do a full budget refresh at the start of the year by analyzing our spending over the entire previous year. This gives us a much better picture of what our actual spending is like vs. an idealized version. It also allows us to see if there are areas of spending that we need to work on for the upcoming year.
Pinterest is great to spend time on to take a look at pretty things, but my favorite use of it goes back to the original inspiration for the site – a Pin Board. When they introduced Secret Boards and then removed the limit, that is when it became a super powerful planning tool. I have had nearly 20 different secret boards. I use them frequently for party planning so that my inspirations don’t spoil the event for anyone that follows me, it also relieves the pressure of having to do the cool thing that I pinned because no one else knows about it. More secret boards are for Things to Make This Month & Things to Make Soon. I re-pin fun ideas to these boards in hopes that I’ll actually get around to making it – and it really does help with the planning of my crafting endeavors. The last category of secret boards that I have are for the Home. These include organization, decoration, and meal planning. These are the ideas that either are something that I actually will be doing or are so far in dream land that it feels silly to have them on the public board. Secret Boards on Pinterest can really be for anything, you could keep a joke board to share with your spouse, or plan for your next vacation.
There are so many things that I want to do to take care of my body but I have such a hard time finding the right places to go. Using MINDBODY I was able to find a curly hair dresser which has revolutionized how my hair looks and feels. Seriously, I’ve never received so many compliments on my hair since going there and using the salon products, which I swore before that point would never be me since I’m not “high-maintenance”. The other thing that I book frequently are 15 or 30 minute massages. It’s the perfect relaxer and pain reliever for the cost of a movie and some popcorn but lasts a lot longer. One more thing that I stare at every week, but haven’t taken the plunge yet, are the group fitness classes at my gym. I really want to go but have a hard time making the time for it. However, what is awesome is that the future times are all there so that when I finally get my act together I can make the time and plan for it. These are all things that were not at the top of my priority list before, but as time goes on, I see how important it is to take care of my wellness especially as a working Mother.
P.S. Full disclosure – I have ties to MINDBODY, but this is my personal opinion and I was not asked to share nor compensated to write this.
This is THE best Bible app for reading plans period. There are hundreds of fantastic reading plans. Every month or so God impresses upon my heart a word or idea for me to dig deeper into his Word about. I’ll go on the Bible app and search the reading plans and find one that is relevant. It’s been a really great way to have a quick bite of the Word every day when I don’t have the time to do an in-depth study. There is now the ability to make Bible verse images which I’ve used for the Bible posts. It’s really great for continuing to meditate on scripture and have a picture in your head for the verse that is on your heart. I accidentally stumbled upon a feature today which is to hear the audio of the Bible passages that are on your reading plan. I thought the audio would have only done the first passage, but it was so exciting that it kept going. This would be great for morning walks!
This is my new favorite app. I was looking for a goal tracking app since there are always so many things that I’m trying to work on at one time. Strides is super simple to add and track a goal. They even have an Apple Watch app to mark when a goal has been completed. The goals don’t have to be time bound, or they can be as specific as having a due date. Most of mine are amounts that I want to accomplish in a week, like Getting up Early every weekday or Exercising 3 times a week, or Blog Posting 3 times a week :) It makes tracking goals something fun and rewarding and think it’s going to be a great tool for kicking off the New Year!