Take your personal and work life to the next level for FREE using this set of apps.
A good productivity system can help you get more done in the same amount of time.
It also reduces anxiety, stops you from forgetting things, and overall just helps you feel calm as you get your work done.
If you have been in the productivity space for a while now, I am sure you already have a personalized system that works for you. In that case, I don’t think you will get a lot of value out of this blog post. Feel free to skip this.
If you are new, however, this is the perfect post for you. I will help you create your first productivity system FOR FREE.
Let’s get started.
What Makes A Good Productivity System?
There are a couple of MUST HAVEs in a good productivity system:
- Task Manager
- Email Client
- Habit Tracker
- Note Taking App
You can also add a bunch of other things to this list, such as a Pomodoro timer, a time tracker, or even some kind of project manager. However, in this post, I will keep it simple.
The goal is to have a simple and efficient productivity system that is FREE.
Hands down, the best FREE task manager you can use is TickTick
.I used TickTick for the better part of 2 years and absolutely loved it. Granted, I did have the premium version, however, that only gave me one feature that I actually used.
The free tier is more than enough for most people.
I will list a couple of features that you get with the free tier.
- Quickly add tasks using voice input, keyboard shortcuts, widgets, and Siri integration
- Smart date parsing when adding tasks
- Location-based reminders
- Customizable smart lists based on tags, priority, and due dates
- Full search functionality
- View tasks in the calendar view
These are some awesome features you are getting for free. If you don’t have a system yet, this is a great starting point.
The simple choice that works across all platforms and OS is Google Calendar.
Personally, I use Apple Calendar which is free as well. However, if you are not in the Apple ecosystem, I would recommend using Google Calendar instead.
Google Calendar will also seamlessly integrate with your Gmail.
There is no premium feature of Google Calendar, so you pretty much get everything from scheduling to setting work hours to creating meeting notes.
Spark Mail is the best free email client that you can use. Period.
It’s superior to the more popular Gmail in every way.
All the features that you need in an email client are available in the free tier. There is a premium Spark 3.0, however, it’s not necessary.
Some features that I use regularly:
- Smart Inbox
- Pin important emails
- Snooze to remind you of an email later on
- Schedule future email sends
- Email templates
Since I moved to Spark Mail from Gmail, I have absolutely loved it! It’s also available on all platforms with no feature compromises.
Habitifyis a really good FREE habit tracker.
You don’t really need much from a basic habit tracker. You just need the ability to tick off habits as you do them and see how you have been doing. You also need the app to remind you when it’s time to perform a habit.
Habitify will give you all that for free.
The only limitation though is you will be limited to a set number of habits. If you are a starter, most probably you won’t want to start a bunch of new habits anyway.
If you do want a habit tracker that has no limits, you can also check out Habitica which has some good reviews.
Note Taking App
Notion is one of the best note-taking apps out there. It’s insanely versatile.
Notion does have a paid premium tier, however, the free tier is more than good enough for most. I have been using the free tier for over 3 years now, and I am yet to hit any limits.
One caveat: If you are uploading a lot of photos in your note-taking apps, you will reach the limit fast. In that case, I would recommend using Google Docs.
As I mentioned before, Notion is very versatile. You can create tables and databases, along with plain Google Docs-like document files.
The app is beautifully designed, easy to use, and very customizable.
There you go, folks! That’s the best FREE productivity that I think can really help take your personal and work life to the next level.
I will summarize things below:
- Task Manager → TickTick
- Calendar → Google Calendar
- Email Client → Spark Mail
- Habit Tracker → Habitify
- Note-Taking App → Notion
I hope you found this a valuable read and have some takeaways that you can go ahead and implement in your wonderful lives.
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