Productivity. Such a simple word really. Five syllables in length, fairly easy to spell, and yet, for many of us, it remains a mystery. Almost as elusive as those magical elixirs…
But not any more! Oh no! Today, we’re demystifying productivity by turning to the magic of the Internet! That’s right! We’re diving into some of the best tools the World Wide Web has to offer to help us master productivity once and for all!
We’ve got some truly amazing resources to share with you today! From project management and communication tools, to resources that will help you keep cool, calm, and collected so you can keep checking off those to-do list items like a mean productivity machine! And best of all they’re all available, at least on a basic plan, for free!
These are by no means in any particular order. They’re just 10 of the best free resources cyberspace has available to help you boost your productivity and reach your goals.
Related read: The Top 10 Work From Home Productivity Tips
First, we need to talk about the elephant in the Zoom…Okay, that was a terrible joke! But the point is that Zoom’s popularity skyrocketed in 2020 as more than half the world had to figure out how to work from home. Zoom held everything from birthday parties, weekly office hangs, to the more serious budget meetings and team talks. I’m sure we all uttered the phrase, “I’m just hopping on Zoom cal,” at least once! A week.
But all jokes aside, Zoom is a great resource when it comes to boosting your productivity. It enables you to have emergency team meetings, run an idea by a colleague, or just touch base with your team on a regular basis. This helps keep everyone on the same page and, most importantly, on task, and will ensure that you consistently hit your targets and make your deadlines, with plenty of time to spare!
Trello is essentially a collaboration tool that helps you to organize your projects with the use of separate boards. It’s the perfect way to help you manage your team as well as your own personal workflow. The Kanban style planning allows you to see what’s being worked on, who’s working on it, and where the task is in the process. It has everything you need to keep your entire team in the loop of what needs to happen while at the same time giving you the space you need to keep your creative juices flowing. Trello is currently being used by many companies as well as freelancers to keep their work organized and flowing smoothly.
Here at We Edit Podcasts, Trello helps ensure that all aspects of the company are running smoothly and that all our different tasks are completed on time! We use it to manage all of our teams, and it’s definitely one of our top tools for keeping our productivity levels sky high!
3. Toggl Track
If you’re looking to master your time and amp up your productivity, then look no further than Toggl Track. Toggl is a time tracking software that offers online time tracking and reporting services to help give you a clear idea of where you’re spending your time. You can track your daily activities across different platforms and you’ll get detailed insights into your work habits. And all of this is great for helping you master being productive as you can then use this feedback to identify the areas where you can improve. You can then optimize your workflow and hone your productivity skills!
There are a variety of time trackers, you can set reminders to keep you on track, and there are over 100 app integrations so you can keep on task no matter where you’re working. Toggle Track understands that time is money, and they’ve designed a great free app to help you save both!
4. Tomato Timer
Being productive is essentially knowing how to make effective use of your time. So one really effective way to boost your productivity levels is to employ some tried and tested time management techniques. And one such method is the Pomodoro Technique. Developed by Francesco Cirillo (you can check out his official website here), this technique helps you work smarter by breaking your tasks up into intervals, traditionally 25 minutes in length, separated by short breaks. This helps you eliminate time wasted on distractions by keeping you on task for the next 25 minutes.
It’s a really effective productivity technique, but it’s made even more effective by the Tomato Timer. And that’s exactly what you get when you use this website. No sign up or login required! It’s just a virtual tomato timer (Pomodoro is Italian for tomato, in case you found the name odd!) that’s available online to help keep you focused on the task at hand and your productivity levels boosted way up!
There are also free apps for your smartphone that offer the same or similar features as Tomato Timer. So if you’d prefer using a smartphone app rather than your desktop, try checking out this article for 10 of the best Pomodoro apps available.
5. Insight Timer
I know what you’re thinking. A meditation and relaxation map on a list all about resources to help keep you productive? That doesn’t seem right! However, let me explain. If you’re stressed out or overwhelmed by all you’re trying to accomplish, you’re certainly not going to be productive on any level!
But if you’re calm, and your thoughts aren’t all scrambled up, you’re going to be way more productive! And so, resource number 5 is the anti-anxiety app Insight Timer. Awarded the accolade of Number 1 Free App for sleep, anxiety, and stress, Insight Timer will help you stay focused and grounded, no matter how hectic work and home life can get. There are a vast amount of guided meditations led by mental health professionals, all available for free when used online. It’s a fantastic resource to have when you need to take the necessary time to refocus and recenter.
Slack is another great productivity tool that we make frequent use of at We Edit Podcasts! Slack’s byline is “Where work happens” and that’s exactly what the app aims to help you achieve! Slack makes it incredibly easy to stay connected to your team. You can set up reminders, make calls, and share files, besides dropping the occasional meme (or two!).
The layout makes it easy to connect to anyone on your team, and you also have access to channels, where specific conversations can take place. Slack has an impressive free option, particularly for smaller teams, and will help you keep your finger on all the pulses, keep you on task, and most importantly, keep you super productive!
If you use social media as part of your brand or business’s marketing strategy, then apps like Buffer are a must-have! Buffer enables you to focus your social media strategies by making it easy and effective to plan, collaborate, and publish all your content across the different social media platforms.
By allowing you to plan and queue up your social media content well in advance, and doing all the publishing for you, Buffer helps you stay productive and stay focused on your current task, so that you don’t have to drop everything to make sure your social feeds are well-stocked with your stand-out content.
If creating content plays any part of your workflow, Evernote is a great resource you have at your disposal and will be an essential asset in improving your productivity. Evernote is an app designed for note taking, organizing, task management, and storing all your bright ideas. It helps you save heaps of time by giving you all the features you need to capture your ideas and find them fast. You can take standard notes, capture images, and record audio in meetings or lectures, all from your phone or tablet – even if you’re offline.
You can create different notebooks for all the roles you have to play, and Evernote has all types of templates, so that no matter the project you’re undertaking, you can be sure you’ll be off to a great start! And Evernote connects with the productivity tools you already use, so there’s no time wasted!
ClickUp is another powerful project management tool to add to your productivity arsenal. It also comes with a powerful promise – to save you one day every week. Guaranteed! Well, that had me sold! ClickUp has a ton of amazing features, making it your one-stop shop for all your planning and productivity needs!
Due to the huge amount of features, it can take a little time to get the hang of how it all works, but there are super helpful onboarding videos, which explain all the features in a fun, yet seriously informative way. And once you do get into the swing of things, your productivity levels will be boosted to unforeseen levels!
Whatever your industry or niche, you probably need to do a lot of reading if you want to stay ahead of the game. Knowledge is power after all, but it can be super time-consuming surfing the Internet to read up on all the latest blog posts and newsletters from leaders in your industry. And that’s exactly where Feedly comes in, and why it’s featured on this list!
Feedly is a free news aggregator application which pulls all your posts from your favorite sites and lines them up for you to peruse in one place. No more jumping from site to site trying to stay up-to-date and in-the-know! All you need to do now is brew yourself your favorite beverage, and pop open the Feedly app, and you can quickly and seamlessly get all the day’s top stories.
We all want to “be more productive” and “get more done in a day” but without an actionable plan and the right tools in your metaphorical toolbox, these will just be something we say, and not something we actually do.
These ten resources have been carefully designed to help you master the elusive productivity, and best of all, they’re all available, at least as basic plans, totally free! Talk about real value!
So what are you waiting for?! Sign up, download, and login to these resources, and your productivity levels will be boosted through the roof!
Related read: 10 Habit Building Strategies That ACTUALLY Work