productivity http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/567/all en-US Flashback Friday: 46 Easy Ways to Be More Productive http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-46-easy-ways-to-be-more-productive <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-46-easy-ways-to-be-more-productive" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_working_happy_516982930.jpg" alt="Woman finding easy ways to be more productive" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's incredibly easy to lose focus at work, especially if you wear multiple hats at your company and often have to multitask in order to stay on top of your workload. But with a few simple shifts in mindset, you can become more productive, and a lot less stressed, too!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/man_working_online_000042174160.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-stay-productive-while-working-from-home?ref=fbf">5 Ways to Stay Productive While Working From Home</a> &mdash; Your home has distractions around every corner, so if you work from home, you are constantly trying to resist being pulled away from the work task in front of you. But if you master these tips, you'll be just fine.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-productivity-tips-for-it-professionals?ref=fbf">10 Productivity Tips for IT Professionals</a> &mdash; When you spend eight or more hours a day looking at a computer screen, it's easy to lose focus. If you work in IT, a few task management apps, software updates, and communication tips could turn a day of distractions into a brilliant work day.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/coffee_break_sign_000068533353.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/give-yourself-a-break-the-productivity-secret-thatll-change-the-way-you-work?ref=fbf">Give Yourself a Break: The Productivity Secret That'll Change the Way You Work</a> &mdash; Not everyone can be productive for eight straight hours, and according to recent studies, some can only be productive for three of those hours. But once you understand the way you work and when you're most productive, you can harness that energy and become a more efficient employee overall.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-productivity-apps-for-really-busy-people-like-you?ref=fbf">The 10 Best Productivity Apps for Really Busy People Like You</a> &mdash; We could all use a few more apps, am I right? And these productivity apps will help you stay on track during a workday, at the grocery store, or while organizing things at home. Plus, once you become more productive, you can start pursuing your goals with gusto.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/business-470445829.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-rules-of-creating-a-powerfully-productive-workspace?ref=fbf">6 Rules of Creating a Powerfully Productive Workspace</a> &mdash; It's hard to be productive when your desk is a cluttered mess. Your workspace should always remain tidy and organized so you know what needs to be done, and in which order. Besides, clutter leads to stress, and nobody needs more stress.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-most-productive-ways-to-spend-your-lunch-hour?ref=fbf">The 10 Most Productive Ways to Spend Your Lunch Hour</a> &mdash; Your lunch hour is that sacred block of time that's just yours during a workday. However, most of us spend it thinking about all the things we still need to do before the workday ends. Trade those worried thoughts in for meditation, a nap, or a nice walk and you'll come back to work refreshed and ready to rock.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-46-easy-ways-to-be-more-productive">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-43-easiest-ways-to-become-a-time-management-master">Flashback Friday: 43 Easiest Ways to Become a Time Management Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-more-out-of-business-trips">10 Ways to Get More Out of Business Trips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-need-a-time-budget-and-how-to-create-it">Why You Need a Time Budget — and How to Create It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-single-greatest-key-to-managing-your-time">The Single Greatest Key to Managing Your Time</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Productivity efficient fbf flashback friday more productive productivity stay productive time management Fri, 31 Mar 2017 08:30:32 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1919043 at http://www.wisebread.com This Simple Negotiating Trick Puts Money in Your Pocket http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-513381684.jpg" alt="Man using negotiating trick to keep money in his pocket" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you hear the word &quot;anchoring,&quot; what comes to mind? No doubt something that involves a ship dropping anchor, or perhaps fixing something to a wall or floor. But it's also a known technique used in sales and negotiations that helps people get what they want.</p> <p>The basic premise is not unlike that ship dropping its anchor, only instead of keeping the vessel in one place, it keeps your mind there. Whether it's a price, a salary, a sale, or a goal, this technique anchors your mind at a certain level. Then, all decision-making is based on that first piece of information you were given.</p> <p>Let's take a look at how it can be used to help you get what you want, save money, and even achieve a lot more around the house.</p> <h2>Negotiate a Bigger Raise or Starting Salary</h2> <p>Many people foolishly wait for the other person to make the first move when it comes to salary negotiations. The thinking here is that you don't want to show any of your cards too soon. Well, that's the complete opposite of what you should actually do. Using the anchoring technique, you can choose a salary that sets the starting point for the negotiations.</p> <p>If you're an employer, throw out a figure that is way too low. If you're an employee, raise the bar higher than you'd expect to hit. If you ask for a $180,000 salary, and the actual salary on offer is $120,000, you may actually get a little more than what they originally intended to pay. It's much harder to come down to $120k from $180k than it is from $130k. Similarly, giving an employee an offer of $70,000 for a job you'd be willing to pay $120,000 is just as effective.</p> <h2>Sell a Product or Service for More Money</h2> <p>You don't have to be in a big business to use this effectively. It can work online, at a market stall, or even a garage sale. Here, you will use anchoring as a comparison tool.</p> <p>For instance, let's say you're selling vinyl records, which are very popular these days. Set a few vinyls on the table and mark them way above the price you actually want. Then, further back, put a larger selection of vinyls set at a price slightly above what you would like, but much lower than the other, more expensive records. When the patron comes to peruse the stock, they'll initially get sticker shock. But then, they see a vast drop off. That initial price of $20 per vinyl just dropped to $8. These $8 vinyls seem like a bargain. However, if they had all been marked at $8, or some cheaper ones had been placed first, that initial anchor price would have set the standard. Try it out. You'll be amazed at the results.</p> <h2>Get More Done at Home or at Work</h2> <p>If you're having trouble getting all of your tasks done, either at home or at the office, you can use anchoring as a way to be more productive. In this case, it can be overwhelming to have 20 different things to do when you get home. You are anchored to a task list so large that you simply don't do any of them.</p> <p>Instead of 20, anchor yourself at a more manageable number. How about five? Divide those 20 tasks into five groups of four, and attack them that way. For example, instead of organizing the fridge, doing the dishes, cleaning the stove, and wiping the counters, your task instead becomes &quot;clean the kitchen.&quot; By grouping your activities, and creating a smaller list of tasks, you are anchoring yourself at a much more achievable goal. At the office, it's the same thing. Don't give yourself a massive list of tasks. Instead, divide and conquer.</p> <h2>Get a Better Price on a Car or a House</h2> <p>Car dealerships use anchoring all the time to get you to pay more for a vehicle. The sticker says $18,000, but in reality, they're willing to go as low as $13,000; they just never tell you that. It's time to turn the tables on them.</p> <p>When you go into the dealership, never tell them what you are prepared to pay for the car. Instead, set your price way lower. If you're ready to spend $20,000, tell them the most you can pay is $15,000. It's your hard stop. No more. The salesperson will now be anchored at that lower price, and will do whatever he or she can to get you to go past it by a few thousand dollars. This is good news for you, because in reality, you're going to spend a few thousand less than you actually wanted to pay. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know?ref=seealso" target="_blank">17 Things Car Salesmen Don't Want You to Know</a>)</p> <p>The same goes for buying a house. Your initial offer should be low. Not low enough to price yourself out of a bidding war, but low enough to set the expectations of the seller. And as an aside, if you're selling the home, go high. When you list the home at $300,000 and sell it for $280,000, the buyer thinks they saved $20,000. However, you may well have wanted $270,000 for the house. You just made an extra $10,000 and the buyer is happy with the deal.</p> <h2>Use Your Knowledge of Anchoring to Beat the Sales Staff</h2> <p>Whether you're buying a car, a bag of apples, a new set of wireless headphones, or a few books, anchoring will often come into play. Trained sales staff know how to use anchoring to get what they want. But, if you're prepared, you can become &quot;anchorproof&quot; and pay less. Here are a few techniques at your disposal.</p> <p>First, you can simply ignore their anchor, especially if it's ridiculously high or low. Now, you don't want to say &quot;No way,&quot; as this halts the process. Instead, use language like &quot;I see, that's not quite what I had in mind, let's look at this at a different way and find something we can both be comfortable with.&quot;</p> <p>If you don't want to do that, try an anchor that negates theirs. For example, at a car dealership, when the salesperson gives you the old &quot;We can take $3,000 off this car,&quot; you can reply &quot;Wow, that still puts it $3,000 above my maximum price.&quot;</p> <p>You can also deflect an anchor by offering one from a different company. At that same dealership, you can say &quot;That's a great discount, but it's still $2,000 more than the same vehicle on offer at ABC Dealership.&quot; Of course, to do this you have to have done your research. Make sure you know exactly what the prices are at competitors, and be ready to back it up.</p> <p>So, armed with all of this, you should now be ready to use anchoring to make and earn more money, and save money every time you have to negotiate a price. Go get 'em.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retailers-where-you-can-negotiate-a-lower-price">11 Retailers Where You Can Negotiate a Lower Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-these-8-questions-to-get-a-better-price">Ask These 8 Questions to Get a Better Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-negotiating-skills-everyone-should-master">8 Negotiating Skills Everyone Should Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-shopping-mistakes-keeping-you-from-a-great-deal">The 6 Shopping Mistakes Keeping You From a Great Deal</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Career Building deals goals negotiating productivity raises salaries sales saving money selling strategy Wed, 15 Mar 2017 10:30:19 +0000 Paul Michael 1907105 at http://www.wisebread.com Organize 8 Key Areas of Your Life With These 17 Smart Apps http://www.wisebread.com/organize-8-key-areas-of-your-life-with-these-17-smart-apps <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/organize-8-key-areas-of-your-life-with-these-17-smart-apps" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-540566958.jpg" alt="Woman organizing her life with smart apps" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="142" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's no doubt the phone in your pocket is a great time killer while in a crowded waiting room, but the truth is that smartphones are actually amazing little tools that can really improve your productivity &mdash; both personally and professionally. Here are eight tasks you can do on your phone, with the help of 17 apps, that will help you organize your life and even boost your savings account with almost no effort on your part. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-productivity-apps-for-really-busy-people-like-you?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Great Productivity Apps for Really Busy People Like You</a>)</p> <h2>Track Your To-Do List</h2> <p>Skip the Post Its, notepads, and notes scribbled on napkins. Take your pick of task management apps, depending on how simple or robust you'd like it. Some will integrate with your calendar while others can be shared with friends and family. Find the one that will keep you on task and ditch the pen and paper for good.</p> <h3>1. Wunderlist</h3> <p><a href="https://www.wunderlist.com/" target="_blank">Wunderlist</a> allows you to create to-do lists, set due dates and reminders, and even assign to-dos for others.</p> <h3>2. Todoist</h3> <p><a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/todoist-todo-list-for-organizing-work-and-errands/id572688855?mt=8" target="_blank">Todoist</a> manages all of your projects &mdash; both personal and professional. You can also seamlessly manage all your tasks and events from any device.</p> <h3>3. Any.do</h3> <p><a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/any-do-to-do-list-calendar-reminders-tasks/id497328576?mt=8" target="_blank">Any.do</a> lets you link your calendar and to-do lists, so you always know what's coming up. You can set reminders for both so you never lose track of deadlines again.</p> <h2>Log Your Time</h2> <p>Have you ever wondered how much time you waste every day on things like social media or TV? The first step to managing your time effectively is understanding how your time is currently being spent, and where it's being wasted. Use a time tracker app to determine where your time is going. Some apps will work in the background, automatically gathering data on where you spend your time, whereas others allow you to manually select activities.</p> <h3>4. Awesome Time Logger</h3> <p><a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/awesome-time-logger-free/id663656917" target="_blank">Awesome Time Logger Free</a> features an intuitive interface that allows you to quickly track and log your time throughout the day and get custom reports that you can use to improve productivity.</p> <h3>5. My Hours</h3> <p><a href="https://myhours.com/#features" target="_blank">My Hours</a> works as a stop watch, tracking time you spend on each task. The app also allows you to assign billing to hours if you are a freelancer or contractor.</p> <h3>6. Toggl</h3> <p>While <a href="https://toggl.com/features" target="_blank">Toggl</a> is an ideal time tracker for teams, it's also great for individuals seeking an easy way to track time spent on tasks and bill accordingly.</p> <h2>Take Notes</h2> <p>There are few things more frustrating than needing to jot something down, and not having a pen and paper to do so. But luckily, this is 2017, and you no longer need traditional writing tools to record your thoughts. Note taking apps have moved way beyond just allowing you to type a few words on a file. Some allow you to create useful filing systems, set reminders, collaborate and share with others, and include everything from links to photos to screenshots.</p> <h3>7. Evernote</h3> <p><a href="https://evernote.com/" target="_blank">Evernote</a> lets you create full project to-do lists that can be shared across multiple platforms.</p> <h3>8. Google Keep</h3> <p><a href="https://keep.google.com/u/0/" target="_blank">Google Keep</a> allows you to take quick notes, add lists, photos, and voice memos to track your every thought. Seamless integration with Google Docs makes it easy to turn those quick notes into longer documents.</p> <h2>Organize Your Projects</h2> <p>You're busy. I'm busy. We're all endlessly busy. Sometimes we don't even know where to start, when to stop, and how much to do. Use time management apps that will allow you to schedule your tasks throughout your day.</p> <h3>9. Trello</h3> <p><a href="https://trello.com/platforms" target="_blank">The Trello</a>&nbsp;app helps you create &quot;boards&quot; for all the projects you're currently working on and lets you easily add notes, to-do lists, photos, videos, and even customized workflows for your projects.</p> <h3>10. Asana</h3> <p><a href="https://asana.com/" target="_blank">Asana</a> lets you track projects from start to finish, and easily chat with project collaborators as you go along.</p> <h2>Protect Your Passwords</h2> <p>In an era of cyber security breaches and identity thieves running amok with personal information, protecting passwords has become serious business. You want to make sure your passwords don't all match, are not easy to guess, and are updated frequently enough to protect yourself from data hacks. But you also need a way to remember or access all those secure passwords! There's an app for that.</p> <h3>11. Keeper</h3> <p><a href="https://keepersecurity.com/" target="_blank">Keeper</a>&nbsp;creates, organizes, and auto-fills strong passwords on your behalf for all your accounts.</p> <h3>12. LastPass</h3> <p><a href="https://www.lastpass.com/" target="_blank">LastPass</a> keeps all of your precious passwords in one safe space, and alerts you to any duplicate passwords that may put you at risk for being hacked.</p> <h2>Control Your Documents</h2> <p>Even after signing up for paperless delivery for all our accounts, we still can't escape the daily receipts, business cards, and other documents that we end up collecting on a daily basis. Use an app to quickly scan and file these away.</p> <h3>13. Shoeboxed</h3> <p><a href="https://www.shoeboxed.com/" target="_blank">Shoeboxed</a>&nbsp;lets you scan receipts and business cards, track mileage, and even send expense reports with receipt images attached.</p> <h2>Save Effortlessly</h2> <p>If you've made it a financial priority to build up your savings accounts in 2017, you know it can take time and due diligence to make it happen. Personal finance apps help you manage your money, pay your bills on time, and also effortlessly save money.</p> <h3>14. Acorns</h3> <p><a href="https://www.acorns.com/" target="_blank">Acorns</a> automatically funds your savings for you by rounding up your purchases and adding the change to your Acorns savings account. They'll even invest the &quot;change&quot; for you so you can potentially make much more than what your savings account is currently paying. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-i-learned-about-money-after-using-acorns?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Here's What I Learned About Money After Using Acorns</a>)</p> <h3>15. Digit</h3> <p><a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/digit-save-money-automatically-without-a-budget/id1011935076?mt=8" target="_blank">Digit</a> is the perfect savings sidekick. Once you link the app to your checking account, Digit analyzes your spending and sets aside small amounts of cash to save. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/can-a-robot-called-digit-really-help-you-save-more?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Can a Robot Called Digit Really Help You Save More?</a>)</p> <h2>Schedule Appointments</h2> <p>Tired of having to open up your calendar each time a meeting request comes in via email or text? Integrate your emails and even your text messages with your favorite calendar app to see everything in one place.</p> <h3>16. Gyst</h3> <p>Quickly determine potential meeting dates with <a href="http://gystapp.com/" target="_blank">Gyst</a>, both with friends and business colleagues by linking your text messages and emails with your calendar.</p> <h3>17. Handle</h3> <p><a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/handle-to-do-list-inbox-and-calendar-management/id766063605?mt=8" target="_blank">Handle</a> does just what it says and handles your life by linking your emails, to-do lists, and calendar, so you always know what's expected of you and where you need to be.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Forganize-8-key-areas-of-your-life-with-these-17-smart-apps&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FOrganize%25208%2520Key%2520Areas%2520of%2520Your%2520Life%2520With%2520These%252017%2520Smart%2520Apps.jpg&amp;description=Organize%208%20Key%20Areas%20of%20Your%20Life%20With%20These%2017%20Smart%20Apps"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Organize%208%20Key%20Areas%20of%20Your%20Life%20With%20These%2017%20Smart%20Apps.jpg" alt="Organize 8 Key Areas of Your Life With These 17 Smart Apps" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/organize-8-key-areas-of-your-life-with-these-17-smart-apps">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smartphone-apps-that-can-help-you-in-an-emergency">10 Smartphone Apps That Can Help You in an Emergency</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents">The 5 Best Apps for Busy Working Parents</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-tools-and-gadgets-your-smartphone-can-replace">7 Tools and Gadgets Your Smartphone Can Replace</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-dumb-little-productivity-killers-you-need-to-stop-doing-today">10 Dumb Little Productivity Killers You Need to Stop Doing Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-apps-that-pay-you-to-workout">6 Apps That Pay You to Workout</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization Technology apps apps you need organization productivity smartphone apps tech news time management Fri, 03 Mar 2017 10:30:38 +0000 Kyle James 1901984 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Use the Holiday Quiet Time to Boost Your Career http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holiday-quiet-time-to-boost-your-career <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-use-the-holiday-quiet-time-to-boost-your-career" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-539452034.jpg" alt="using holiday quiet time to focus on your career" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Depending on your office's culture, it can become a barren wasteland starting right after Thanksgiving, and stay that way until after the New Year. Especially if your office is open the week between Christmas and December 31, it's completely common to find yourself as one of the few people in the office &mdash; if not the only one!</p> <p>And while bingeing on Netflix or having chair races with the only other person in the office may sound appealing, office quiet time is a golden opportunity for you. The empty office gives you a chance to prepare for 2017 and build your skills. Instead of whiling away the hours on Candy Crush, try the following ideas to be productive.</p> <h2>Take a Course</h2> <p>Whether you want to learn how to code, dream of graphic design, or think mastering advanced Excel functions will help you in your current work, there are free and low-cost courses available to help you meet your goal.</p> <h3>Coursera</h3> <p><a href="http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=g519OIyP0is&amp;offerid=467035.208&amp;type=3&amp;subid=0" target="_blank">Coursera</a> offers free classes from top universities like Yale, Harvard, and Brown in subjects like psychology, neuroscience, or fundamental programming concepts. While you cannot get credit for the classes you take, these are excellent resources for developing new skills.</p> <h3>Udemy</h3> <p>Similarly, <a href="http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=g519OIyP0is&amp;offerid=323085.8&amp;type=3&amp;subid=0" target="_blank">Udemy</a> offers free classes, but they also have more in-depth classes with a fee, too. Udemy courses tend to be more niche-focused. If you want to learn about the latest in social media, such as how to use Periscope for brand promotion, or how to use Photoshop's editing features, Udemy offers many options and self-paced learning opportunities. While even Udemy's paid classes tend to be very affordable, if the lesson can be applied to your work, check with your manager to see if the company will cover the cost. Your initiative will show a good use of your time during the slow season.</p> <h2>Research Tools That Can Improve Your Work</h2> <p>During the busiest months, it can get so crazy you don't have a lot of time to research ways to streamline processes or make your job easier. So you stick to what you know and what works, even if it is inefficient. The slow weeks can be a great time to find new ways of doing business that can make your life simpler in 2017.</p> <p>There are many free or cheap tools available for every line of work. Below are just five free options that can help you in different industries, but there are hundreds of tools that can improve efficiencies and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance?ref=internal">empower you to be more productive</a>.</p> <h3>Asana</h3> <p>If your company struggles to keep up with deadlines and track who is accountable for what, <a href="https://asana.com/" target="_blank">Asana</a> can be a gamechanger. Asana allows you to create tasks, assign people to each step, and set public deadlines. Asana is free for for teams up to 15 people, so it can be great for individual departments to stay on track and keep projects moving forward.</p> <h3>Canva</h3> <p>If you run social media pages, coming up with images for the different channels can be a major timesink. And if you have to wait on someone else to do them for you, that can make it difficult to capitalize on breaking trends. <a href="http://www.canva.com" target="_blank">Canva</a> allows you to create polished, professional-looking images in minutes, even if you have no graphic design training yourself. There's thousands of free templates, and while you can upload your own photos, they also offer stock photos for just $1.</p> <h3>FullContact Card Reader</h3> <p>Whether you work in sales, procurement, or marketing, gathering business cards is part of the job. And it's all too easy to accumulate a stack and forget about them, or lose them altogether. The <a href="https://www.fullcontact.com/cardreader/" target="_blank">FullContact Card Reader</a> scans the business card and saves the information to a designated place that you can organize and search. You can save up to 1,000 contacts with the free version.</p> <h3>HemingwayApp</h3> <p>If you're a writer, you'll enjoy <a href="http://www.hemingwayapp.com/" target="_blank">HemingwayApp</a>. Not only does it recognize typos and grammatical errors, but it also highlights bad habits like passive voice, excessive adverb use, and overly complicated sentence structure.</p> <h3>Written Kitten</h3> <p>Have you been delaying writing an email or starting on a sales report? Meet <a href="http://www.writtenkitten.net/" target="_blank">Written Kitten</a>, an utterly ridiculous free tool that may get you inspired. After you write 100 words, the site rewards you with an adorable picture of a kitten. Just don't allow yourself to cheat the system and start writing nonsense just to see the next cat.</p> <h2>Take Advantage of Your Time</h2> <p>It can feel like a real drag as the only person in the office. But this time of the year can be a fantastic chance to invest in yourself, learn new skills, and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-productivity-tips-for-it-professionals?ref=internal">optimize your productivity</a>. Dress comfortably, load up your phone with great music, and try these courses and tools to set yourself up for a strong 2017.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kat-tretina">Kat Tretina</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-the-holiday-quiet-time-to-boost-your-career">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket">This Simple Negotiating Trick Puts Money in Your Pocket</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-go-to-college-to-learn">Don&#039;t Go to College to Learn</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-succeed-as-an-online-student">How to Succeed as an Online Student</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-important-signs-that-your-job-sucks">10 Important Signs That Your Job Sucks</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Career Building education holiday break holiday vacation Holidays online classes productivity training Wed, 14 Dec 2016 11:30:08 +0000 Kat Tretina 1853788 at http://www.wisebread.com The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_67204101_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="improving his work performance with these free tools" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>With tight deadlines and heavy workloads, there are never enough hours in a day to get everything done. If you find yourself constantly pressed for time, your work performance can get impacted. Constant stress at work can cause mistakes and delays. But there are free tools that can help improve productivity, stay organized, and catch errors, and improve your output at work.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-sluggish-workday-go-a-lot-faster?ref=seealso">How to Make Your Sluggish Workday Go (a Lot) Faster</a></p> <h2>1. Reduce Typos With Grammarly</h2> <p><a href="http://grammarly.com/">Grammarly</a> is a free grammar checker, more powerful than the standard spell check tools in Word or Outlook. While you can use it to proofread your projects, you can also install the extension so that it will scan your blogs, social media posts, and emails for typos and errors and correct them &mdash; before you send them to your boss (or the public). Unlike other tools, Grammarly uses context clues to identify issues with misused words, such as if you typed &quot;manger&quot; instead of &quot;manager.&quot; It will also highlight grammatical errors, explaining the issues and how to fix them. If you have always struggled with past participles and direct objects, Grammarly is an easy way to get in-the-moment guidance. While there is a premium version that is more detailed, the free option is robust enough to help improve your daily communications.</p> <h2>2. Manage Your To-Do List With Wunderlist</h2> <p>Between work and your home life, juggling errands, tasks and shopping lists can be overwhelming. To-do list apps can help make things simpler. <a href="http://www.wunderlist.com">Wunderlist</a> is a powerful platform that lets you create and share lists, prioritize tasks, and set up reminders for deadlines or recurring projects. It is available on your phone or desktop, so it can be accessed any time, anywhere.</p> <h2>3. Take Notes on the Go With Evernote</h2> <p>If you're the type of person who depends on a notepad and a pen to take notes and stay organized, you know how frustrating it is if you have a great idea and don't have paper in front of you or if you forgot your notes at your desk. <a href="http://www.evernote.com">Evernote</a> is a solution that lets you take notes anywhere. Type reminders to yourself, take a picture of something that inspires you, or save a snapshot of whiteboard drawings to refer to later. The free plan offers 60 MB of storage and can help you manage various projects and long-term plans.</p> <h2>4. Produce Professional Graphics With Canva</h2> <p>Whether you're a social media manager or simply need to make professional looking graphics as part of your job, design software can be prohibitively expensive &mdash; the basic cloud-based version of InDesign alone can cost over $230 &mdash; and cumbersome for new users. <a href="http://www.canva.com">Canva</a> makes it easy to create polished images, even if you have no graphic design training. There are free templates, images, and elements that are fully customizable. Premium content, such as stock photos, can be added for just an additional $1. You can also upload your own images to use to create custom artwork.</p> <h2>5. Simplify Timesheets With Timely</h2> <p>If you need to track billable hours, you know how difficult it can be to manage and reconcile your timesheets. Unlike other tracking platforms, <a href="https://timelyapp.com/">Timely</a> allows you to track hours as you work but also provides a calendar so you can plan ahead. That way, you can compare time you actually spend on a project versus how much time you thought it would take, helping you budget your time more accurately.</p> <h2>6. Manage Emails With Boomerang</h2> <p><a href="http://www.boomeranggmail.com/">Boomerang</a> can completely change how you handle email and increase your productivity. It allows you to hide emails for a certain amount of time and schedule emails ahead of time. If you're one of those people who just can't ignore an email in your inbox, the hide feature can be useful in helping you focus on your tasks at hand. You can set reminders so that when you do need to address the email, it will flag it for you. By scheduling emails, you can write out notes as you think about them, but plan to send them the next morning or when a coworker is back from vacation, keeping it from getting lost in an overcrowded inbox (or you can make your boss think you work long into the night by scheduling emails at 2:00 a.m.). Boomerang also allows you to set up a follow-up feature, so if you have not received a response, it will notify you and ask if you'd like to send a reminder.</p> <h2>7. Automate Tasks With If This Then That</h2> <p><a href="https://ifttt.com/">If This Then That</a> (IFTTT) is a free service that allows to create &quot;recipes,&quot; or actions in response to specific triggers. For instance, you can set it up so that if someone tags you on Twitter, a private message to that user is automatically generated. Or, if you get a new follower on Facebook, ITTT can establish a recipe which saves a photo of that user for your archives. It can help you manage social media platforms around the clock &mdash; and a whole lot more.</p> <p><em>Do you use any free tools to help with work performance? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kat-tretina">Kat Tretina</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-essential-tools-for-getting-work-done-anywhere">7 Essential Tools for Getting Work Done -- Anywhere!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-deal-when-youre-way-behind-at-work">6 Ways to Deal When You&#039;re Way Behind at Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-simple-negotiating-trick-puts-money-in-your-pocket">This Simple Negotiating Trick Puts Money in Your Pocket</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-time-and-money-saving-apps-for-freelancers">16 Time and Money Saving Apps for Freelancers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-46-easy-ways-to-be-more-productive">Flashback Friday: 46 Easy Ways to Be More Productive</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Career Building Productivity apps free free tools jobs productivity tools work work performance Fri, 19 Aug 2016 10:30:15 +0000 Kat Tretina 1775077 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Healthy Habits to Take to Work http://www.wisebread.com/10-healthy-habits-to-take-to-work <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-healthy-habits-to-take-to-work" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_44946184_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="bringing healthy habits to work" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>From weight gain to carpal tunnel syndrome, working a desk job takes its toll. According to the Mayo Clinic, <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/expert-answers/sitting/faq-20058005">sitting all day can cause</a> high blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol, and even increase your risk of developing cancer. But by being proactive and taking some precautions, you can minimize the impact of sitting all day and keep yourself healthy and happy.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-your-desk-from-killing-you?ref=seealso">5 Ways to Keep Your Desk From Killing You</a></p> <h2>1. Drink Water</h2> <p>Many people are so busy at work that they forget to eat, or drink water, and all those cups of coffee can dehydrate you. As your body craves water, you can feel hungry, irritable, or listless, just because you're thirsty. Keep dehydration at bay by keeping a large water bottle at your desk. If you need a boost of flavor, add some fresh fruit to it to give it some extra zing. Having it within reach will encourage you to drink throughout the day and stay hydrated. You might be amazed by how much more alert you feel with enough water in your system.</p> <h2>2. Avoid Sugary Snacks</h2> <p>The best part of any workday when surprise bagels or doughnuts show up at a meeting. But those extra sweets and carbohydrates add up. Not only can they cause a sugar crash, leaving you feeling exhausted, but the extra calories can cause you to gain weight. Instead, plan ahead to have healthy snacks instead. Hard boiled eggs, string cheese, nuts, and peanut butter and crackers are healthy treats packed with protein, so you feel full and satisfied. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-smoothie-bowls-you-want-right-now?ref=seealso">11 Smoothie Bowls You Want Right Now</a>)</p> <h2>3. Walk Whenever You Can</h2> <p>Sitting at your desk not only contributes to obesity, but also to hypertension and other health issues. Get up and walk several times throughout the day to keep your muscles moving. If possible, step out at lunch for a brisk 20-minute walk. Better yet, schedule walking meetings to catch up on status reports and new updates. You'll find yourself more energized after your meeting than if you sat in a conference room.</p> <h2>4. Eat Lunch</h2> <p>With so much going on at work, you may skip lunch or forget about it until you're ravenous at 3:00 p.m. That makes it even more tempting to grab a candy bar from the vending machine. Instead, make eating a healthful lunch a priority. A salad made with vegetables and chicken can give you energy, while a sandwich made with lean meats, tomatoes and kale can make you feel full for the rest of the afternoon.</p> <h2>5. Protect Your Neck</h2> <p>Whether you look down at the computer, or hold the phone against your shoulder to keep your hands free, your job can be hard on your neck. And all of that strain can cause your muscles to tense and tighten up, causing pain later on. Raise your computer to a comfortable height so you can see it looking straight ahead. You don't need expensive equipment; a few reams of copy paper can do the job. And a simple phone headset can allow you to use the phone while typing, without hurting your neck.</p> <h2>6. Prevent Eye Strain</h2> <p>All of that time in front of the computer screen can hurt your eyes, causing headaches, sensitivity to light, and dry eyes. Keep your computer screen about an arm's length away from you. If you can't clearly see the text on the screen, just increase your font size. There are also screen covers you can use to minimize the glare from the monitor to decrease the strain on your eyes.</p> <h2>7. Fidget</h2> <p>Fidgeting and moving can help minimize the effects of a sedentary work life. Whether you use an exercise ball as a chair or have a minibike under your desk, even occasionally moving around can help increase blood flow and circulation. A recent study showed that fidgeting, or just doing small movements every day, could counteract the <a href="http://time.com/4045317/fitness-sitting-work/">negative effects of sitting at your desk</a>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-exercises-to-do-at-work-that-dont-make-you-look-silly?ref=seealso">10 Exercises You Can Do at Work</a>)</p> <h2>8. Invest in Lighting</h2> <p>Fluorescent lights can be brutal on your eyes. If possible, ask maintenance to disable the lights in your office or directly over your cubicle, and bring in a floor or desk lamp of your own with softer light. If that's not possible, a small desk shade can help shield you from the fluorescent light's rays.</p> <h2>9. Focus on Posture</h2> <p>When you're on a tight deadline and typing away, it's all too easy to end up hunched over your computer. But that position can be harmful to your back and joints. At the end of the work day, you can end up feeling sore and stiff due to your work habits. Invest in a good office chair or cushion to help encourage good posture. Apps like <a href="http://www.postureminder.co.uk/">PostureMinder</a> send you reminders throughout the day to sit up straight, helping you break a bad habit.</p> <h2>10. Take Vacation</h2> <p>Most importantly, if you have vacation days, use them! Vacations are physically and mentally important for you to unwind, de-stress, and spend time with loved ones.</p> <p>While office jobs can be hard on your body, you can counteract the effects with some ingenuity and preplanning. By preparing healthy meals and snacks and by reminding yourself to get moving, you can keep yourself energized all day long.</p> <p><em>What other healthy habits can you do at your desk? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kat-tretina">Kat Tretina</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-healthy-habits-to-take-to-work">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-stay-healthy-on-vacation">7 Ways to Avoid Getting Seriously Sick on Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-times-you-should-speak-up-at-work">10 Times You Should Speak Up at Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-unmistakeable-signs-youre-slacking-at-work">5 Unmistakeable Signs You&#039;re Slacking at Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-tips-for-better-workplace-body-language">7 Tips for Better Workplace Body Language</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-to-do-before-your-first-day-at-a-new-job">5 Things to Do Before Your First Day at a New Job</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Health and Beauty cubicle healthy eating healthy habits Office productivity Stay Healthy work work habits Tue, 16 Aug 2016 09:30:31 +0000 Kat Tretina 1773088 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Apps for Busy Working Parents http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother_baby_phone_43606458.jpg" alt="Mom using apps for busy working parents" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Working parents need to maximize their time in order to be most efficient. These apps will help working moms and dads better manage kids' routines, plan family outings, and manage family budgets effectively.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-money-apps-for-kids?ref=seealso">10 Fun Money Apps for Kids</a></p> <h2>1. Happy Kids Timer</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/KidTimer_02.PNG" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Having a hard time keeping kids on schedule, especially in the mornings? <a href="http://www.kidssmartzone.com/">HappyKidsTimer</a> is an app your kids use to help them manage their daily morning routines, like making their beds, getting dressed, brushing their teeth, and so forth. The app features timers and fun incentives to help your kids get on their way.</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-basic-manners-you-must-teach-your-kids?ref=seealso">10 Basic Manners You Must Teach Your Kids</a></p> <h2>2. KidsEatFree</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/KidsEatFree.PNG" width="340" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>Busy parents often don't have time to cook &mdash; and dining out with the whole family gets expensive, fast. Restaurateurs have responded with a variety of kids eat free promotions. Too many, in fact, for busy parents to track. <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/kids-eat-free-restaurant-finder/id933114765?mt=8">KidsEatFree</a> is the free app that helps you find free kids' meals nearby, keeping your family on time &mdash; and on budget.</p> <p>Available for iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-and-delicious-meals-to-make-with-your-kids?ref=seealso">10 Frugal and Delicious Meals to Make With Your Kids</a></p> <h2>3. Mint.com</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Mint_AppStore.jpeg" width="341" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>Speaking of budgets, busy parents need to manage their family's money while they are managing the kiddoes. <a href="https://www.mint.com/">Mint.com</a> remains the gold standard free app for tracking all your spending, paying bills, setting and tracking budgets, and monitoring overall net worth.</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-5-apps-can-fix-your-finances?ref=seealso">These 5 Apps Can Fix Your Finances</a></p> <h2>4. VarageSale</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/VarageSale_01.PNG" width="340" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>If you're keen on sticking to your budget, <a href="https://www.varagesale.com/">VarageSale</a> is great for connecting busy parents with others who want to buy or sell used family and children goods. You can make extra cash off your used stroller or crib &mdash; or you can pick up gently used ones for a great price. Look at all the cute outfits!</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-kids-stuff-at-a-consignment-sale?ref=seealso">How to Sell Your Kids' Stuff at a Consignment Sale</a></p> <h2>5. Trekaroo</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/Trekaroo.PNG" width="340" height="605" alt="" /></p> <p>Finally, even the busiest, most goal-directed families need some downtime. <a href="http://www.trekaroo.com/">Trekaroo</a> helps hardworking parents plan and budget family outings &mdash; everything from faraway vacations to local day trips. The app finds kid-friendly activities when and where you need them. Even better, each destination includes reviews from other busy parents who've already been, so you can get the inside scoop way before you get there.</p> <p>Available for Android and iOS.</p> <p><em>What are your go-to apps for managing life with kids?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/janet-alvarez">Janet Alvarez</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-apps-for-busy-working-parents">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-apps-that-make-budgeting-fun-no-really">7 Apps That Make Budgeting Fun — No Really!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-ways-to-save-on-smartphones">5 Smart Ways to Save on Smartphones</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-manage-your-money-no-budgeting-required">How to Manage Your Money — No Budgeting Required</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-books-that-will-get-your-kids-excited-about-money">10 Fun Books That Will Get Your Kids Excited About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-parenting-mistakes-to-avoid-when-teaching-kids-about-money">4 Parenting Mistakes to Avoid When Teaching Kids About Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Technology apps budgeting managing money money management parenting phone phone apps productivity saving money smartphone Tue, 09 Aug 2016 11:00:11 +0000 Janet Alvarez 1768674 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Powerful Reasons Companies Should Offer More Wellness Programs to Keep Their Employees Healthier and Happier http://www.wisebread.com/5-powerful-reasons-companies-should-offer-more-wellness-programs-to-keep-their-employees-healthier-a <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-powerful-reasons-companies-should-offer-more-wellness-programs-to-keep-their-employees-healthier-a" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_77500397_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="enjoying their employer-sponsored wellness program" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>This post is sponsored by Aflac. For more resources, tools, and insights on small business benefits, visit <a href="https://r1.fmpub.net/?k1=cmx-metric&amp;k2=289%7C820%7C3297&amp;k3=disclaimer&amp;k4=&amp;r=http%3A%2F%2Fad.doubleclick.net%2Fddm%2Fclk%2F300137116%3B126951509%3Bv" rel="nofollow">Aflac.com</a>.</em></p> <p>From gym memberships and on-site massages, to mental health coverage and meal services, according to research by the Society for Human Resource Management, a growing number of companies are boosting the health and wellness benefits that they offer to their employees. In its 2015 Strategic Benefits Survey, the Society found that 69% of human resources professionals reported that their <a href="https://shrm.org/research/surveyfindings/pages/2015-strategic-benefits---wellness-initiatives.aspx">companies offered some type of wellness program</a>. A total of 52% of companies responding to the survey said that employee participation in these programs increased in 2014. There are powerful reasons why more and more companies are doing so &mdash; they&rsquo;re seeing the astounding benefits wellness programs have on their employees, and as a result, on their bottom lines.</p> <h2>Wellness Programs Help Employees Be More Productive</h2> <p>If you're healthy, you'll be more productive. At least that's the thinking of the country's most progressive employers. According to the Division of Population Health and Workplace Health Promotion of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, wellness programs can actually <a href="http://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/businesscase/benefits/">make employees more productive</a>. They take fewer sick days and are more engaged and motivated when at the office. It's not surprising that companies that offer wellness perks continue to do so, and even expand their offerings.</p> <h2>Wellness Programs Save Employers Money</h2> <p>Companies <a href="http://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/evaluation/cost.html">pay less in insurance and workers compensation costs</a> during the year when they offer robust wellness programs, the CDC says. Healthier employees are more alert and careful, preventing accidents and other dangerous incidents. Not only that, but a program that allows employees to get checkups and screenings to monitor their health will be less expensive than treatments after things get serious.</p> <h2>Wellness Programs Retain Talented Workers</h2> <p>These programs affect retention and recruitment, too. The CDC reports that companies that offer perks such as gym memberships, weight-loss programs, and health assessments <a href="http://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/evaluation/organizational.html">attract, and keep</a> the most talented employees. That&rsquo;s not surprising since workers report that benefits, especially ones that contribute to their health and wellbeing, give them a sense of trust and loyalty to their company.</p> <h2>Wellness Programs Boost Company Earnings</h2> <p>A study published in the January issue of the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found hard evidence that employee wellness programs benefitted not just workers, but companies. The <a href="https://www.shrm.org/hrdisciplines/benefits/articles/pages/wellness-corporate-performance.aspx">study tracked the stocks</a> of 45 publicly traded companies that offered robust health and wellness programs from 2009 through 2014. According to the study, the stock of these companies appreciated 235% during this time compared with an appreciation rate of 159% for S&amp;P 500 companies in general.</p> <h2>Supplemental Insurance Adds Peace of Mind</h2> <p>To help support employees during a covered illness that wellness programs can&rsquo;t prevent, supplemental insurance can be an integral solution to the rising costs of out-of-pocket expenses for health care. Rather than pay high premiums or make employees bear the burden of high deductibles, specialized supplemental insurance can help alleviate costs to both the employer and employee.</p> <p>For all these reasons, it&rsquo;s clear that wellness programs that promote health and wellbeing in employees benefit the employers as much (or more) than the workers themselves. It should be powerful motivation for any company to look into offering or even expanding their health and wellness benefits.</p> <script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8" src="https://vc.cdn.fm/video_conversationalist/system/published/opportunity/99116820/289_3297.js"></script><br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-powerful-reasons-companies-should-offer-more-wellness-programs-to-keep-their-employees-healthier-a">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-employee-perks-are-good-for-business">5 Ways Employee Perks Are Good for Business</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-sluggish-workday-go-a-lot-faster">How to Make Your Sluggish Workday Go (a Lot) Faster</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/america-is-the-no-vacation-nation">America Is the No Vacation Nation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-simple-steps-to-discovering-your-true-salary-potential">6 Simple Steps to Discovering Your True Salary Potential</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/does-generous-unemployment-benefits-prolong-the-length-of-unemployment">Do generous unemployment benefits prolong the length of unemployment?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income Insurance aflac earnings employees healthy productivity supplemental insurance wellness programs Thu, 07 Jul 2016 13:23:31 +0000 Dan Rafter 1741534 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Get More Out of Business Trips http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-more-out-of-business-trips <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-get-more-out-of-business-trips" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_business_trip_000015958604.jpg" alt="Woman learning ways to get more out of business trips" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whenever I travel for work, I find the time on planes to be relaxing, and I get lots of work done. For me, recreational Internet use is a major distraction, and with less distraction comes more productivity. This travel work ethic is something that isn't just me either. The Atlantic notes the same phenomenon that occurs at coffee shops, where <a href="http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2011/04/working-best-at-coffee-shops/237372/">most people are more effective</a> outside of their offices, even though it's noisy. But there also seems to be more personal responsibility. Because people can see your screen, you're <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5793436/why-some-of-us-get-more-done-at-coffee-shops">more likely to actually do work</a> and not just scroll through Facebook, as Life Hacker notes. These examples can be equated directly to travel.</p> <p>And while Bloomberg Business <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/bw/articles/2013-03-21/eight-reasons-business-travelers-shouldnt-work-on-planes">doesn't recommend working on an airplane</a>, there is a way to take advantage of your time without causing a headache or stress. Here are 10 ways to maximize your travel time when you fly.</p> <h2>Before You Take Off</h2> <p>Here are little things you can do before you're in the air that'll make flying an enjoyable &mdash; and efficient &mdash; experience.</p> <h3>1. Buy Noise-Canceling Headphones</h3> <p>Planes can be loud. That's where headphones come in handy. I even use them when I forget my iPod (yes, I'm probably one of the few who still uses an iPod). It helps me rest and keeps the distractions out. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-wireless-headphones?ref=seealso">Best Wireless Headphones</a>)</p> <h3>2. Download Podcasts</h3> <p>Don't forget to download any podcasts or songs ahead of time. Planes can be the perfect time to catch up on <em>This American Life</em>, a business podcast, or even a comedy podcast. My friend listens to a lot of inspirational podcasts that have been great for her as she has been trying to start a new business. Find something that works for you and make sure you have it on your phone or other electronic device.</p> <h3>3. Set Your Google Drive to Work Offline</h3> <p>If you do a lot of work in Google Drive, make sure to download your drive on your computer. It lets you make changes online and then loads them when you connect to the Internet again. It's great!</p> <h3>4. Get Your To-Do List Together</h3> <p>To maximize your time on the plane, make sure you have your to-do list together so you can be effective. I have a bad habit of writing down my list on every scrap of paper I can find. I now use Flow on my iPhone instead, which has been more effective lately since I can't remember when I've finished something, and deadlines help make me more productive. Unfortunately, they don't currently have an offline version, so you might have to print your list or save it elsewhere.</p> <h2>On the Plane</h2> <p>Once you're onboard, here's what you can do maximize time in your seat.</p> <h3>5. Meditate</h3> <p>Practicing mindfulness is quickly becoming one of my favorite ways to relax and become centered. On a plane, it can be used to quell those moments of fearfulness, but it's also a great way to get your mind ready for the big trip. If you're <a href="https://www.psychologytoday.com/basics/mindfulness">new to mindfulness</a>, practice it a bit before leaving so you understand how to really take advantage of your time. Also download some soothing music to listen to.</p> <h3>6. Write</h3> <p>As a writer, I get some of my best work done while on a plane. Even if you don't enjoy writing, there are some great observations to be made while traveling. Carry around a little notebook and note every time the toddler behind you kicks your chair or demands crackers. It can actually help you put your mind at ease and make light of a stressful situation. If you love to write, plane trips can relieve writer's block.</p> <h3>7. Read</h3> <p>Because I never make time to just sit and read in my everyday routine, I rarely do it at all. However, reading is one of my favorite things to do. You don't have the pressure of the Internet calling your name or someone texting you while you're lost in the pages of a good book, so take advantage of being disconnected!</p> <h3>8. Brainstorm</h3> <p>Because I work at a nonprofit that provides affordable housing solutions, my mind is constantly buzzing with ideas for projects we can undertake. I also run a nonprofit that conducts classes, which means my brain never gets a break from ideas. I've spent a large amount of time on planes brainstorming and creating a vision for the coming months and I highly recommend it.</p> <h3>9. Budget</h3> <p>I recently had a hospital visit that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-youre-hit-with-a-huge-medical-bill">proved to be very costly</a> and I've had to really sit down and budget how I'm going to spend my money. On a plane ride not long ago, I figured out how to take care of my medical bills, and I've been using the method ever since. While online tools like Mint are great, I prefer using Excel to track my expenses. It really depends on what your goals are and how you want to get there.</p> <h3>10. Sleep</h3> <p>If you're mentally exhausted, sleeping on the plane might be the best option. There are days when I get no alone time, and being an introvert, I really value that time. So sometimes I plan ahead to sleep on the plane. Just make sure you don't sleep during takeoff and landing.</p> <p><em>What do you do to be productive while traveling?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-ways-to-get-more-out-of-business-trips&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%20Ways%20to%20Get%20More%20Out%20of%20Business%20Trips.jpg&amp;description=10%20Ways%20to%20Get%20More%20Out%20of%20Business%20Trips" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Ways%20to%20Get%20More%20Out%20of%20Business%20Trips.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jennifer-holder">Jennifer Holder</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-more-out-of-business-trips">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-46-easy-ways-to-be-more-productive">Flashback Friday: 46 Easy Ways to Be More Productive</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-get-people-to-respond-to-your-email">15 Ways to Get People to Respond to Your Email</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-say-no-at-work-and-still-get-ahead">How to Say &quot;No&quot; at Work and Still Get Ahead</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kill-boredom-with-these-34-fun-and-productive-projects">Kill Boredom With These 34 Fun and Productive Projects</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Productivity Travel business travel business trip efficiency productivity work trip Mon, 28 Dec 2015 10:00:03 +0000 Jennifer Holder 1625937 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Make Your Sluggish Workday Go (a Lot) Faster http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-sluggish-workday-go-a-lot-faster <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-make-your-sluggish-workday-go-a-lot-faster" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_productive_workday_000052836384.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to make her sluggish workday go faster" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>How many times have you looked longingly out the window beside your <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/fitness/Best-Yoga-Poses-Office-Workers-24640282">office desk</a>, wishing you were outside enjoying the fresh air &mdash; or taking a nap at home? We <em>know</em> you're raising your hand right now, and we understand 100 percent! Sometimes, the day feels like it's crawling by slower than a snail, and by the end of it, you're completely exhausted. Here's how to beat that workday rut and ensure that it flies by so quick, you won't know it hit you.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-Career-Advice-38400406">Real People Share the Greatest Career Advice They've Ever Received</a></p> <h2>1. Find a Job That You Love or a Project You Enjoy Within Your Current Job</h2> <p>Ideally, you want to seek a job that you'd look forward to every day &mdash; but all hope may not be lost for your current profession. &quot;If finding a job you're passionate about is tough, then find a task or project area to become an expert in,&quot; recommends <a href="http://www.jenndewallcoaching.com/" target="_blank">Jenn Dewall</a>, a career and life coach for female professionals. &quot;Find learning opportunities to enhance your understanding, set up touch-bases with people who know more, and practice it!&quot;</p> <h2>2. Set Up a Snack Drawer in Your Office</h2> <p>Nothin' like a good old chocolate chip <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/food/How-Make-Homemade-Clif-Bars-37977261">Clif Bar</a> to boost your mood. &quot;[Fill your drawer] with healthy snacks to keep your energy up and some of your favorite things you look forward to indulging in,&quot; suggests Hallie Crawford, career coach and founder of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.halliecrawford.com/" target="_blank">HallieCrawford.com</a>.</p> <h2>3. Have a Five-Minute Conversation With a Co-Worker</h2> <p>Constant corporate jargon gets old, fast &mdash; and drags the day on. &quot;We need to infuse fun into our workday, [because] it reduces stress and can increase team building,&quot; Dewall says. &quot;Ask a question that is unrelated to work and start a conversation. In similar fashion, you can also pick a pop culture topic and talk about it for five minutes.&quot;</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Career-Tips-Introverts-38279445">7 Totally Practical Career Tips For Office Introverts</a></p> <h2>4. Take Walks</h2> <p>Don't be a bump on a log all day; get up and move! &quot;Either walk during your lunch, or take short walks after accomplishing a bigger task,&quot; Dewall recommends. &quot;Walking will give you energy and can also break up stressful work projects.&quot; Want to take it up a notch? &quot;Schedule coffee walks with work colleagues so you can get some caffeine, fresh air, and positive conversation all at once,&quot; suggests <a href="http://www.dallekcoaching.com/" target="_blank">Rebecca Dallek</a>, a career and leadership coach for women.</p> <h2>5. Have a Look at Other Businesses</h2> <p>If you've got a little free time and you're feeling bored, &quot;Research the competition,&quot; says <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/jilljacinto" target="_blank">Jill Jacinto</a>, a millennial career expert for WORKS. It will give you a leg up on keeping your company sharp, and it may spark a few ideas. Plus, it's more interesting than <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Things-Waste-Your-Time-Work-38001474">repeatedly refreshing your email</a>!</p> <h2>6. Work With People You Like</h2> <p>&quot;This is critical to overall workplace enjoyment and to make each day fly by,&quot; Dallek says. Think about it. If you're sitting next to a co-worker who complains about everything from the temperature of his coffee to the new manager, your eyes are going to be glued to the clock.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Motivational-Spotify-Playlist-Work-38401746">20 Songs to Get You Through the Workweek</a></p> <h2>7. Focus on Your Accomplishments, Not Your Never-Ending To-Do List</h2> <p>Don't allow your pending work tasks to submerge you in stress. &quot;The more you focus on what has happened successfully during the course of your day, the faster it will go by, because you're less overwhelmed by the next thing on the list and enjoying a sense of accomplishment instead,&quot; Crawford says.</p> <h2>8. Jam to an Inspiring Song in Between Each Task</h2> <p>Whip out those headphones, stat. &quot;Allow yourself to get lost in the music for a song, and once the song is completed, go back to work,&quot; Dewall recommends. &quot;This is another mental break where the intention is to focus on how the song is making you feel &mdash;&nbsp;it's not just music to drown out your co-workers.&quot; She suggests starting out with coffee house favorites and then amping up to lively, high-energy music (think <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/entertainment/Carly-Rae-Jepsen-Nine-Inch-Nails-Mashup-37226466">Carly Rae Jepsen</a>) as the day comes to a close.</p> <h2>9. Buy Fun Office Supplies and Add Items to Your Desk That Make You Smile</h2> <p>Crawford suggests thinking along the lines of pictures of friends and family, colored folders, and supercute pens. &quot;Keep things professional, of course, but if having fun stuff on your desk makes you smile, go for it,&quot; she says. &quot;You can hide things when a client comes in if you need to.&quot;</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Working-From-Home-Tips-37778375">11 of the Best Work-From-Home Hacks Ever</a></p> <h2>10. Attend a Presentation From Your Colleagues in a Different Department</h2> <p>Jacinto recommends this, because seeing other departments in action provides a unique angle on your company and will maintain your focus. Better focus means faster workday!</p> <h2>11. Sit in Another Location</h2> <p>If you have a flexible workplace design, this one is cake. &quot;Sometimes a new location gives you a fresh perspective,&quot; Dallek says. And if your workspace isn't quite so accommodating or open? Simply transport your laptop to the kitchen for a half hour for a change of environment.</p> <h2>12. Set an End-of-the-Week Reward</h2> <p>You already know how important work objectives are. &quot;Each week, set up five <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/tech/Funny-Relationship-Goals-36598133">goals</a> that you want to accomplish and schedule time to work on them each day,&quot; Dewall suggests. &quot;If you accomplish the goals and fill your day with productivity, reward yourself! This can enhance your confidence and give you a sense of accomplishment when you walk out the door on Friday.&quot; Not to mention, as you center yourself and work toward those goals throughout the week, the days will zip by. And in the end, that's what we <em>all</em> want.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> When&#039;s it gonna be done o&#039;clock already? Make the long workday hours go a lot faster with some shortcuts, treats, and fun ways to be productive. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com" style="border:none;"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" style="height:95px; width:300px" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-Career-Advice-38400406">Real People Share the Greatest Career Advice They've Ever Received</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Career-Tips-Introverts-38279445">7 Totally Practical Career Tips For Office Introverts</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Motivational-Spotify-Playlist-Work-38401746">20 Songs to Get You Through the Workweek</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Working-From-Home-Tips-37778375">11 of the Best Work-From-Home Hacks Ever</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-sluggish-workday-go-a-lot-faster">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-cool-jobs-for-outdoorsy-types">11 Cool Jobs for Outdoorsy Types</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-in-your-office-you-can-throw-out-today">12 Things in Your Office You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-career-tips-your-younger-self-would-give-you">9 Career Tips Your Younger Self Would Give You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/avoiding-grass-is-always-greener-syndrome">Avoiding grass-is-always-greener syndrome</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now">The Easy Way to Cure Chronic Procrastination You Should Try Now</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income Organization Productivity careers desk job distractions jobs office job productivity workday Fri, 02 Oct 2015 09:00:34 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1571506 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Things to Do Before Your First Day at a New Job http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-to-do-before-your-first-day-at-a-new-job <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-things-to-do-before-your-first-day-at-a-new-job" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_wearing_tie_000022506159.jpg" alt="Man doing things needed before first day at new job" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Starting a new job can feel like the first day of school. Sure, you're excited for this new chapter in your career, but the thought of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/got-a-new-job-heres-your-financial-to-do-list">walking into a new job</a> with new faces and greater responsibilities might evoke fear and nervousness. Will you get along with your new coworkers? Will you be able to handle the job? Will your personality match the company's culture?</p> <p>Truth is, the first day (or week) at a new job can be physically and mentally exhausting, and you won't truly know what to expect until you sit down at your desk. Even so, there are things you can do to ensure your first day is as smooth as possible.</p> <h2>1. Plan Your Route a Couple Days Before</h2> <p>You might know the exact route to get to your new job, but given that traffic conditions can be unpredictable, especially during rush hour, it's important to plan your route perfectly.</p> <p>A couple of days before the start of your new job, do a test run of your commute to see how long it takes to get there. It's also a good idea to test your commute around the time you plan on leaving the house each day. This gives you a pretty accurate picture of traffic conditions at that time. Under normal conditions it might only take 10 minutes to get to your job, but during rush hour the commute might jump to 20 minutes.</p> <p>Since you don't want to be late on your first day, it doesn't hurt to have a backup route in the event of an accident or another delay. Also, you might have a friend on standby, just in case you experience car trouble the morning of your first day and you need a ride.</p> <h2>2. Know the Dress Code</h2> <p>The first day at a new job is nerve-racking enough, so you don't need any issues that can potentially add to your nervousness or make you feel uncomfortable. Knowing the company's dress code is another way to make sure everything goes smoothly on your first day.</p> <p>It can be awkward showing up in a three-piece suit while everyone else wears jeans, slacks, or a polo, and vice versa. You might be able to gauge the company's dress code during your interview, but you should always confirm this with your boss after receiving your start date.</p> <h2>3. Connect With New Coworkers on LinkedIn</h2> <p>Search for your company on LinkedIn and read the profiles of your new coworkers &mdash; and don't be afraid to connect with them. If you become familiar with their names, titles, and faces ahead of time, the first day at your new job might be less scary. It'll feel as if you already know them, and it may even reduce the amount of time it takes to learn everyone's name.</p> <h2>4. Practice Introducing Yourself</h2> <p>Some people are outgoing, talkative, and they can make friends anywhere. If this doesn't sound like you, you can practice introducing yourself and making small talk before the start of your new job.</p> <p>Depending on the size of the company, you might meet 10, 20, or 30 new people in the span of only a couple of hours. You'll likely cross paths with a coworker at the vending machine, in the elevator, and you might have lunch with coworkers on the first day. It'll be nice if you're able to say more than &quot;nice to meet you.&quot;</p> <p>Possible conversation starters might include, how long have you been with the company? What do you do here? These questions require more than a yes or no answer, and can hopefully facilitate a back-and-forth dialogue.</p> <h2>5. Know Which Documents to Bring With You</h2> <p>On the first day at a new job, you'll go through training, meet your coworkers, and you'll likely speak with human resources to fill out various employment forms. Make sure you bring the appropriate documents so you won't delay this process.</p> <p>For example, your employer will need to see and make a copy of your Social Security card and government-approved ID, such as a driver's license or passport. You should also bring your bank account information if you're planning to have earnings direct deposited into your account. You'll also complete IRS form W-4 when starting a new job, so think ahead and decide the amount of taxes you want the employer to withhold from your check.</p> <p><em>Are there other tips you'd like to suggest on what to do before the first day on the job? Let us know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-to-do-before-your-first-day-at-a-new-job">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-never-to-bring-up-in-a-job-interview">5 Things Never to Bring Up in a Job Interview</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-do-on-your-first-day-at-a-new-job">6 Things to Do on Your First Day at a New Job</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-healthy-habits-to-take-to-work">10 Healthy Habits to Take to Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-best-free-tools-to-improve-your-work-performance">The 7 Best Free Tools to Improve Your Work Performance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/long-hours-and-other-employer-demands">Long Hours and Other Employer Demands</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building employment first day first impressions productivity work Mon, 15 Jun 2015 09:00:12 +0000 Mikey Rox 1452652 at http://www.wisebread.com The Easy Way to Cure Chronic Procrastination You Should Try Now http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_procrastinating_000037338664.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to cure procrastination" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Some people may wonder why procrastination advice seems to never work for them and if there is a deeper issue at hand. Well, for 20% of the population who are chronic procrastinators, it is a serious problem that needs to be addressed, according to Joseph Ferrari, a psychology professor at DePaul University and a leading expert in the study of procrastination. For those 20%, telling them to just &quot;do it&quot; is like &quot;telling a clinically depressed person to cheer up,&quot; says Ferrari, author of the book <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Still-Procrastinating-Regrets-Guide-Getting/dp/0470611588/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1329440165&amp;sr=8-1" target="_blank">Still Procrastinating?</a>.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Organization-Tips-DIYs-34385347#photo-34385347">41 Insanely Awesome Organization Hacks</a></p> <h3>It's a Serious Problem If . . .</h3> <p>So how do you know if you're a chronic procrastinator? &quot;You find that you procrastinate at home, at school, at work,&nbsp;in relationships. You don't pay your bills on time . . . You miss sporting events, concerts because you never got the ticket,&quot; says Ferrari. &quot;You're late for any social gathering, you'll miss doctor's appointments because you're never there on time, the refrigerator is empty because you never restock it in time, food goes bad because you never eat it on time. If you do all those kind of things, you probably are a chronic procrastinator.&quot;</p> <p>Read on to find out how people become procrastinators.</p> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Ways-Productive-Morning-34975526">7 Ways to Be Productive Every Morning of the Week</a></p> <h3>How People Become Chronic Procrastinators</h3> <p>There are several factors that can lead one to becoming a chronic procrastinator. Here are a couple of them, according to the procrastination expert:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Your dad</strong>: &quot;It's typically cold, demanding, stern fathers that cause boys and girls to be procrastinators,&quot; Ferrari says. Children with strict dads use procrastination as a way to cope because they can't rebel.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>You care too much about what others think of you</strong>: Some people procrastinate because they care too much about public perception. The pressure to seem perfect is particularly strong for these people. The chronic procrastinators prefer people to see them as procrastinators that don't get around to doing tasks rather than simply being incompetent.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Society</strong>: We live in a world where society doesn't reward punctuality. Instead, we're penalized for being late, which doesn't give any of us incentive to complete tasks ahead of time. &quot;We punish people if they file their taxes late. We give them a bill. If we pay off our credit card late, we charge them a late fee. But what if you pay your card on time and what if you've paid your mortgage off? There's no gift here.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Funny-Sick-Day-Excuses-20337003">10 Really Unusual Sick Day Excuses</a></p> <h3>The Cure for Procrastination</h3> <p>For those who have deep-rooted issues with procrastination, it seems that cognitive behavioral therapy, a type of mental health counseling, is the most effective method. This kind of psychotherapy attempts to reroute inaccurate, harmful, or negative thoughts.</p> <p>Ferrari suggests a couple more ways that might help chronic procrastinators:</p> <ul> <li><strong>Surround yourself with doers</strong>: It's healthy for a chronic procrastinator to surround herself with people who are likely to do things. It'll be a good influence on those with a tendency to delay tasks.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Just start somewhere</strong>: Just take a small step at a time. For example, if you're supposed to write an essay, start with a few paragraphs, and if that's too much for you, resolve to write just one. If that's still overwhelming, stick to a couple of sentences or even a few words.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Set up a reward system</strong>: &quot;People like to do things they enjoy doing,&quot; says Ferrari. He recommends rewarding yourself with something you enjoy after you complete something that you've been dreading to do. For example, reward yourself with half an hour of <em>Desperate Housewives</em> after doing laundry.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><strong>Public posting</strong>: Because procrastinators care so much about how others view them, they are more likely to do tasks when they publicly announce it. Take to Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media outlet and state the task you're going to do. Then when you've completed it, let everyone know that you've done what you set out to do. The &quot;likes&quot; and congratulatory tweets will feel very satisfying.</li> </ul> <p>RELATED:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Make-Mornings-Easier-37111300">Start Each Workday Right by Following These 7 Rules</a></p> <h3>So What if I Am One?</h3> <p>If you're reading this and feel that you fit the profile of a chronic procrastinator, you may think that it's not a big deal to be one. After all, your life might be functioning fine, and you've made it through many of the setbacks caused by your procrastination.</p> <p>However, keep in mind that it may catch up with you one day, and it can get to a point where it disrupts your life and negatively impact other people's opinion of your character. Further, it's not exactly comfortable living as a chronic procrastinator. In fact, Ferrari found that procrastinators have more regrets than nonprocrastinators for things that they didn't do. &quot;Stop stressing yourself over it. Life is short &mdash; leave a legacy,&quot; says Ferrari. &quot;There are too many places to see and too many things to do in life to just procrastinate and wait and living in a bubble of fear of getting it done.&quot;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> What are you waiting for? Fix your chronic procrastination now. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com" style="border:none;"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" style="height:95px; width:300px" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Organization-Tips-DIYs-34385347#photo-34385347">41 Insanely Awesome Organization Hacks</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Ways-Productive-Morning-34975526">7 Ways to Be Productive Every Morning of the Week</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Funny-Sick-Day-Excuses-20337003">10 Really Unusual Sick Day Excuses</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Make-Mornings-Easier-37111300">Start Each Workday Right by Following These 7 Rules</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-cure-chronic-procrastination-you-should-try-now">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-sluggish-workday-go-a-lot-faster">How to Make Your Sluggish Workday Go (a Lot) Faster</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-simple-way-to-make-multitasking-actually-work">The Simple Way to Make Multitasking Actually Work</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fifteen-minutes-of">Fifteen Minutes of ...</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-you-addicted-to-the-internet">Are You Addicted to the Internet?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-stages-of-procrastination-read-this-right-now">The 7 Stages of Procrastination (Read This Right Now!)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Organization Productivity confidence procrastination productivity Fri, 29 May 2015 21:00:09 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1424334 at http://www.wisebread.com 40+ Cheap or Free Ways to Make the Most of the Weekend http://www.wisebread.com/40-cheap-or-free-ways-to-make-the-most-of-the-weekend <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/40-cheap-or-free-ways-to-make-the-most-of-the-weekend" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_relaxing_weekend_000006121440.jpg" alt="Woman finding free way to make the most of the weekend" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The weekend is the perfect time to catch up on things you're behind on, get started on tasks you've been putting off, and recharge your body and mind. To make the most of your two-day break, why not start planning for the upcoming week to take the edge off of those Monday morning blues? Here are some ideas for how to be productive over the weekend, and all of them are super cheap or even free!</p> <p>1. Go grocery shopping.</p> <p>2. Try out new recipes, and plan lunch for the week.</p> <p>3. Get all of your laundry done.</p> <p>4. Get rid of <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/30-Day-Declutter-Challenge-34947493">clutter</a> that's been getting in your way.</p> <p>5. Watch an inspirational movie that will get you pumped for new challenges.</p> <p>6. Organize your kitchen so everything is easy to find when you're in a rush.</p> <p>7. Check out a new book from the library.</p> <p>8. Research quicker or cheaper routes for your commute.</p> <p>RELATED: <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/tech/Productivity-Apps-35922167">Apps That'll Make You Feel Like There Are 40 Hours in a Day</a></p> <p>9. Pick out what you plan to wear on Monday &mdash; or for the whole week.</p> <p>10.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/DIY-Projects-Weekend-34786814">DIY</a> a gift for an upcoming bridal shower or birthday so you don't have to go shopping after work.</p> <p>11. Wake up early.</p> <p>12. Get caught up on all of the major news.</p> <p>13. Sleep, so you'll be well-rested when Monday rolls around.</p> <p>14. Clean out your inbox to make room for more emails.</p> <p>15. Try <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Cool-Upcycling-Projects-24338804">upcycling items</a> that may be useful on your commute or at work.</p> <p>16. Meditate or practice yoga.</p> <p>17. Avoid overdoing it if you go out at night.</p> <p>RELATED: <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Stupid-Things-Make-Your-Life-Better-Reddit-37270312#photo-37270312">15 Stupid Things That Significantly Increase Your Quality of Life</a></p> <p>18. Catch up with friends you don't get to see during the week.</p> <p>19. Give your house a deep clean so you don't have to worry about it after work the next week.</p> <p>20. Start a <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Books-Change-My-Life-21195577">motivational book</a> that inspires or challenges you.</p> <p>21. Get in some of the workouts you skipped over the past week.</p> <p>22. Practice new hair and makeup tricks so you don't waste time in the morning before work.</p> <p>23. Pay your bills.</p> <p>24. Make a to-do list for the upcoming week, month, or even year!</p> <p>25. Network and connect with other professionals in your area.</p> <p>26.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/How-Take-Mind-Off-Work-18502206">Detox</a> from everything going on with your job.</p> <p>RELATED: <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Good-Bedtime-Habits-34564273">Life-Changing Daily Rituals For a Better Night's Sleep</a></p> <p>27. Spend quality time with your significant other.</p> <p>28. Sell some of your old things so that you have extra spending money for the week.</p> <p>29. Polish your jewelry with <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/DIY-Jewelry-Cleaner-30499088">DIY cleaner</a>.</p> <p>30. Schedule or cancel any appointments.</p> <p>31. Call your friends or family that you've been meaning to catch up with.</p> <p>32. Update and refresh your <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Things-Remove-From-Your-Resume-28918668">résumé</a>.</p> <p>33. Search and apply for jobs.</p> <p>34. Download useful organizational apps.</p> <p>35. Do something you feel passionate about, like gardening, painting, or volunteering.</p> <p>36. File your paid bills and legal documents.</p> <p>37. Recharge your body and mind.</p> <p>38. Update your finances.</p> <p>RELATED: <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Tips-Saving-Money-Starbucks-3751741#photo-3751741">14 Starbucks Hacks That Will Save You Money</a></p> <p>39. Make a great <a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Songs-Get-You-Pumped-Work-35126829">playlist</a> for your work week.</p> <p>40. Take out the garbage and recycling.</p> <p>41. Paint your nails and toe nails.</p> <p>42. Shop for any home supplies you might need during the week, like toilet paper, dish soap, or shampoo.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com" style="border:none;"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" style="height:95px; width:300px" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/tech/Productivity-Apps-35922167">Apps That'll Make You Feel Like There Are 40 Hours in a Day</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Stupid-Things-Make-Your-Life-Better-Reddit-37270312#photo-37270312">15 Stupid Things That Significantly Increase Your Quality of Life</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Good-Bedtime-Habits-34564273">Life-Changing Daily Rituals For a Better Night's Sleep</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Tips-Saving-Money-Starbucks-3751741#photo-3751741">14 Starbucks Hacks That Will Save You Money</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/40-cheap-or-free-ways-to-make-the-most-of-the-weekend">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-cheap-fun-things-to-do-this-weekend">47 Cheap, Fun Things to Do This Weekend</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-throw-a-fabulous-and-frugal-dinner-party">How to Throw a Fabulous (and Frugal!) Dinner Party</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-start-a-frugal-dinner-club">How to Start a Frugal Dinner Club</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-have-a-frugal-friday">15 Ways to Have a Frugal Friday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-fun-and-libations-brewery-and-winery-tours">Cheap Fun and Libations: Brewery and Winery Tours</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Entertainment Food and Drink productivity things to do weekend Fri, 15 May 2015 17:00:12 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1394046 at http://www.wisebread.com Do This One Thing to Defeat Disorganization Forever http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-to-defeat-disorganization-forever <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/do-this-one-thing-to-defeat-disorganization-forever" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/retro-businessman-messy-office-desk-Dollarphotoclub_72115873.jpg" alt="businessman messy desk" title="businessman messy desk" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Some people are just born to be organized.</p> <p>Labeling and categorizing comes naturally. Itineraries and schedules are seen as welcomed tools. These are the people that can easily lay their hands on a shopping receipt, the water bill, or the warranty on the refrigerator at a moment's notice.</p> <p>I admire these people. I even envy them at times. But I am <em>not</em> one of them&hellip; not even close.</p> <p>It's not that I don't appreciate the benefits of a good system&hellip; I do. But my brain just doesn't work that way. As counter-productive as it might be, I am innately disorganized to my core. And I have been that way for as long as I can remember.</p> <p>Which is why I knew I had to write this post.</p> <p>See, it's easy for an organized person to tell you how to bring order into your life. Throw stuff away, they counsel. And do one thing at a time.</p> <p>But for those of you &mdash; like me &mdash; who have trouble with those concepts, this kind of advice simply won't work. I do throw things away for instance, but one look at my closet or my garage and you'll know it's not nearly enough. And I'd love to focus on just one thing at a time, if only my mind (and my attention span) would cooperate.</p> <p>So, if you and I have this in common, if you too struggle with inherent disorganization in a relatively organized world, then this post is for you.</p> <p>Do this one thing, and defeat your disorganization for good.</p> <h2>Build Your Own System</h2> <p>I spent years trying to work within the commonly accepted model. File important papers alphabetically for example, and if you haven't used something in a year, toss it out. A place for everything and everything in its place.</p> <p>But those rules simply didn't work for me and the more I tried to adhere to that kind of structure, the more overwhelmed I began to feel.</p> <p>I have spiral notebooks full of story ideas that are older than a year, but toss them out? I think not. I also have the megaphone from my cheerleading days &mdash; decades old, I might add &mdash; and certainly not anything I'll be using anytime soon. Does it have &quot;a place?&quot; No. It's bulky and dented and dusty and it doesn't really &quot;fit&quot; anywhere. Is it something I really need to keep? You betcha.</p> <p>Filing things alphabetically isn't a &quot;bad&quot; idea <em>per se</em>, but let's be honest. Asking me to set up (and follow through with) said filing system is like asking me to stash my socks in those cute, individual cubbies they make for dresser drawers. It's a nice thought, but it's probably not going to happen.</p> <p>So, I've created a system that works for me instead, and you can too.</p> <p>Here's how you do it.</p> <h2>Find Your Flow</h2> <p>We all have a preferred way of doing things and finding yours is the key to building your system. So, look around and see what makes sense to you.</p> <p>What items do you most need to find on a regular basis? What items are you most likely to misplace? Do you frequently write down phone numbers or passwords or other important information on envelopes or scraps of paper?</p> <p>I do, and then would have to spend hours trying to find the right &quot;scrap&quot; when I needed that information again. To remedy that, I keep a steno pad handy at all times to record those little tidbits of data. It's not a &quot;pretty&quot; way to organize that information, but I haven't had to hunt down an old sticky note in ages.</p> <h2>Find Your Place(s)</h2> <p>And all those spirals containing my writing? They're in a box that sits underneath my desk. I know where it is, it's easily accessible, and I can take from it or add to it whenever I need. I do the same with receipts I want to keep and all our various warranties go straight into a drawer in the kitchen the moment they enter our house.</p> <p>Warranties also share space with our chargers, but it's a deep drawer so it works fine and again, both of these item now have a &quot;place&quot; that I can work with, even if it's not the most logical arrangement.</p> <p>My socks also make it to a drawer, but that's about as much as I can promise. Sometimes, they're matched, sometimes they're not, but they're all in the same place and that's good enough for me.</p> <p>The point is to create a system that works the way you work and addresses the areas you struggle with the most.</p> <p>Remember, the whole point of being organized is ultimately to make life easier. You want to find things when you need them, without having to launch an all-day search and rescue. And contrary to popular opinion, there's more than one way to achieve that goal.</p> <p>Building your own system allows you to create your own version of &quot;order,&quot; even if that version still looks chaotic to your more traditionally organized counterparts.</p> <h2>What About Clutter?</h2> <p>Will this get rid of all the clutter?</p> <p>It depends on how deep your clutter runs. The reason that disorganized people find themselves surrounded by clutter is that we haven't yet decided what to do with all that stuff.</p> <p>I have tons of craft supplies for instance, and at some point in my life, I've had specific plans for each and every one. If I can comfortably say that I'm no longer interested in doing a particular project, it's easy to get rid of the supplies in question.</p> <p>But that's not always the case.</p> <p>So, I compromised. I keep the supplies not being used in a plastic tub in the back of my closet. The supplies I use frequently are kept in a smaller tub that slides underneath my bed.</p> <p>Is it a perfect solution? It's perfect for me!</p> <p>Building your own system may not permanently clear out all the clutter, but it at least organizes the &quot;stuff&quot; together, so that you can focus on how to store it. And that makes it easier to find the things you use without weeding through the things you don't.</p> <p>So. Does this mean I won't have to throw things away?</p> <p>You'll still eventually have to &quot;spring clean&quot; and clear things out, especially when you need to make space for the new &quot;stuff&quot; you need to store.</p> <p>You can however, use this model to give yourself more time to come to that decision by making your potential junk less of a nuisance while you assess your options and remember, there's more than one way to &quot;get rid&quot; of something.</p> <p>Maybe you can find a way to upcycle the item into something you'll actually use. Maybe a friend or relative will mention they're looking for that very thing, allowing you to say, &quot;Hey, I just happen to have one you can use!&quot;</p> <p>You can also donate the items, sell them on eBay or Craigslist, host a garage sale, or in some instances, wrap them up and give them as gifts (use common sense with that last one). (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-a-day-to-defeat-clutter-forever?ref=seealso">Do This One Thing to Defeat Clutter Forever</a>)</p> <h2>What About Non-Stuff Clutter?</h2> <p>That sounds great, but what about organizing the non-tangible aspects of my life?</p> <p>So, you're starting to see your physical environment take a more organized shape, but still you're struggling with things like appointments, reminders, bills, and due dates?</p> <p>The same basic approach still applies.</p> <p>I don't work well with day planners for example, but I do love lists and as luck would have it, my cell phone has a simple notes app that keeps those lists forever at my fingertips.</p> <p>I have a running grocery list that gets updated any time I notice we're out of something, a list of clothing sizes (should I want to shop for the family), and another list for thoughts and ideas that that come to me when I'm out and about and my spirals aren't within reach.</p> <p>Birthdays, anniversaries, appointments, bill dates, and trash days are easily managed with the generic reminder app, but if you want something fancier, there are plenty of ready-made apps to help keep you on track as well. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-productivity-apps-for-really-busy-people-like-you?ref=seealso">The 10 Best Productivity Apps for Really Busy People Like You</a>)</p> <p>The key to success here is to write it down (or type it in) when you think of it. Don't assume you'll remember later, because you won't.</p> <h2>Where to Start?</h2> <p>Okay, but one last question&hellip; where do I start?</p> <p>My organized friends would tell you to pick an area, be it a room or one of those non-tangible aspects, organize it and then move to the next area. Focus on one thing at a time.</p> <p>And that's not bad advice. It just may not be the best advice for you.</p> <p>My recommendation is to pick the areas that need your attention the most. After all, restoring order to your kitchen cabinets might give you a sense of accomplishment, but it will be short-lived if your electricity is turned off because you forgot to pay the bill.</p> <p>So, start with your most immediate concerns, then work your way out from there. And don't be afraid to think outside the box because chances are, that's where you'll find the best solutions to defeating your disorganization for good.</p> <p><em>Have you defeated disorganization? What worked for you?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kate-luther">Kate Luther</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-to-defeat-disorganization-forever">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-home-office">10 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Home Office</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-in-your-office-you-can-throw-out-today">12 Things in Your Office You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/organize-8-key-areas-of-your-life-with-these-17-smart-apps">Organize 8 Key Areas of Your Life With These 17 Smart Apps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-16-favorite-ways-to-get-rid-of-clutter">My 16 Favorite Ways to Get Rid of Clutter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-sluggish-workday-go-a-lot-faster">How to Make Your Sluggish Workday Go (a Lot) Faster</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization clutter planning productivity Wed, 11 Feb 2015 10:31:14 +0000 Kate Luther 1285778 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Home Office http://www.wisebread.com/10-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-home-office <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-home-office" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000036142028_Double.jpg" alt="woman home office" title="woman home office" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The holidays hit my home office like a tornado, but one of my New Year's resolutions was to get my workspace spic and span, and keep it that way. And with a genius storage system, a change in behavior, and a few simple items that are inexpensive and widely available, I plan to do just that.</p> <p>Sure, you could blow all your holiday gift money at the Container Store, but you don't have to do that. Here are the steps I took and items I'm utilizing to keep myself, and my work, organized:</p> <h2>1. End Clean, Start Clean</h2> <p>Throughout the day, my work unpacks itself: books, papers, post-its, pens and pencils, push pins, newspapers, and magazines. So I end every day by tidying up my space and bringing order to the widespread disorder known as my desk. I write out a list of my tasks for the next day and place that list in the center of my desk so that I can start tomorrow with clarity and focus.</p> <h2>2. Wrangle Papers</h2> <p>While the good ol' filing cabinet works for some people, it's a blackhole for me. Papers go in there and never see the light of day again. Instead, I bought a simple set of three stacked trays marked &quot;urgent,&quot; &quot;current,&quot; and &quot;to scan.&quot; All of my papers make their way down the ladder in that order. When they hit the &quot;to scan&quot; tray, I use my desktop scanner and file them away in folders on my laptop hard drive. <a href="http://www.neat.com/">Neat</a> is another wonderful option for receipt tracking and document scanning. With the push of a button and the accompanying Neat mobile app, you'll banish papers and keep your space clear from rampant paper clutter.</p> <h2>3. Get Wireless Everything</h2> <p>A few years ago I had a storage box marked &quot;cords.&quot; In it I stored a tangle of cords for my many electronic devices. Even when they were wrapped and labeled, I couldn't stand that box and I hated the mess that wires caused in my home office. In that moment, I decided to go wireless as much as I could. The plethora of brands that now make wireless and Bluetooth-enabled devices have greatly reduced their prices and increased the available selection.</p> <p>Some of my favorite wireless pieces are my wireless printer/scanner, wireless device charging pad, and wireless mouse. I couldn't believe the peace and harmony I found in my office once I cleared the jungle of wires. I still have to charge some of my devices overnight but now I have a designated space for that charging and all the cords are neatly tucked away in a drawer under the table.</p> <h2>4. Use Just Enough Space</h2> <p>I move a lot. Last year alone I moved to three different apartments. When you move a lot, your items tend to follow you, and they may not always be best for your space. To counter this, I keep everything as small as possible no matter how big my space is. My desk is only as big as I need it to be to fit the essentials of my trade as a writer: a laptop, a pad of paper, a jar of pens, and a small desktop printer/scanner. The bigger the desk, the bigger the mess. I fill my space so I keep my work space, and furniture, small.</p> <h2>5. Find Storage Everywhere</h2> <p>Everything I have serves a double or triple purpose. I learned early on that all furniture needs to pull its weight in my space. There's hidden storage in everything. For example, the seat of my desk chair lifts up for storage and the desktop itself sits atop a hidden storage tray.</p> <h2>6. Use the Walls</h2> <p>Because I keep my desk small, I make full use of my walls. I have hooks, cork boards, magnetic strips, and right-sized sturdy shelves woven in with art that inspires me on my walls. Walls resist clutter in a way that horizontal surfaces can't, so I use my walls as much as possible.</p> <h2>7. Choose a Bright and Simple Color Palette</h2> <p>My office space has a simple color palette &mdash; white, brown, seafoam green, and a dusty blue. That's it. It's a beautiful combination of brightness and soothing comfort because it reminds me of the sea, the sand, and the sky. And because it's beautiful, I'm motivated to keep it neat so that it remains a place where I enjoy spending my time.</p> <p>I also have just the right combination of light: natural light, desktop light, and an overhead light when I need to spread out a bigger project. I use the right light for the right time of day for the right project. By keeping it bright, clutter isn't able to hide from my view so I'm more likely to take care of it quickly and restore order.</p> <h2>8. No Junk Drawers Allowed</h2> <p>Forget giving yourself an allowance of a junk drawer. It has a natural ability to grow without your permission. In 2015, I'm subscribing to the old philosophy of &quot;a place for everything and everything in its place.&quot; I picked up mason jars of various sizes and a large set of small plastic boxes at my local dollar store to keep all those tiny desk items like paper clips, rubber bands, and writing instruments organized.</p> <h2>9. Keep It Clear</h2> <p>This is a new idea I got when I was shopping around for organizing materials. If we keep them clear, we can easily see what's inside of them and the light that filters through them gives an airy feeling to the space. They also make a small space seem bigger. You can even get a clear desk, chair, storage furniture, and shelving if you really want to make everything in your space clear.</p> <h2>10. Digital Wins</h2> <p>I read a lot of books, magazines, and newspapers not only because I love to read, but because I also edit and review books for publishing companies and write on a wide variety of topics that require me to read massive amounts of content every day. I have a handful of books and periodicals in paper form &mdash; these are ones that really resemble workbooks of some kind that are easier to use in paper form. Everything else is digital on my Kindle and through a set of mobile apps on my iPad. After a few days, my eyes were feeling the fatigue of that bright screen so I adjusted the settings on iPad to have my screen be black with white type. This helped tremendously and now my eyes aren't any more fatigued than when I read in paper form.</p> <p>And all those books? I donated them to my local library so that they could be enjoyed by my community.</p> <p><em>How do you keep your space tidy and organized?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christa-avampato">Christa Avampato</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-home-office">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-to-defeat-disorganization-forever">Do This One Thing to Defeat Disorganization Forever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-lose-the-clutter-and-keep-the-memories">9 Ways to Lose the Clutter and Keep the Memories</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-genius-storage-solutions-for-your-garage">12 Genius Storage Solutions for Your Garage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-in-your-office-you-can-throw-out-today">12 Things in Your Office You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-declutter-and-keep-your-stuff-too">This Is How You Declutter and Keep Your Stuff, Too</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization clutter productivity storage Wed, 28 Jan 2015 12:00:19 +0000 Christa Avampato 1283486 at http://www.wisebread.com