Does managing your job, side hustle, and personal commitments ever feel like jogging on a hamster wheel, always desperate for more time?
I know the feeling. I started my writing career as a side hustle. Now, even though I have a full-time writing job, I still freelance on the side. Although I’m grateful for the extra income, it often feels like I’ll never get everything done.
I can’t create more hours in the day, but I’ve learned to make better use of the time I do have – mostly thanks to technology.
So if you’re looking to carve out more time (and sanity) in your life, check out these eight productivity apps below.
8 best productivity apps for side hustlers
These apps will help you make the most of every minute – whether you’re working, hustling, or standing in line at the grocery store. All are available for both Apple and Android devices.
I recently discovered Trello, and I’m not sure how I lived without it before. This task-management app is basically a virtual bulletin board filled with sticky notes.
You can create a board for each segment of your life (personal, work, side hustle, etc.), or just combine them into one giant board. On each board you can make lists as well as tasks which you can easily move between lists.
It’s a great way to visualize what’s on your plate – and hopefully never miss another deadline!
Zapier helps you save time by automating tasks across and between different apps. All you need to do is create a “Zap.” This is an event that automatically occurs when you perform a pre-designated “Trigger.” This Trigger then sets off another event.
Here’s a video explaining the process.
Although it’s accessed via a web platform and not a mobile app, I’m including it on this list because it works with more than 750 apps.
On the free plan, you can schedule up to five Zaps at once. Here are some that might interest you:
- Publish a WordPress post → share it on LinkedIn
- Add a label to an email in Gmail → create a Trello card
- Host an Eventbrite event → add attendees to a Mailchimp list
- Make a sale on Paypal → send a thank you email
- Have an upcoming event on Google Calendar → tweet your followers a reminder
Since there are so many different ways to use the platform, trust me when I say that no matter your side hustle you’ll find ways to make it more efficient with Zapier!
If you think you don’t have time to read the news (but want to stay in the know) then download Pocket to your mobile, tablet, or computer device. When you see an article that piques your interest, click “Save to Pocket,” and the article will download to your phone to read later.
That means you can read the articles when you’re out of service – making it my favorite way to use transit time productively.
Here at Student Loan Hero, we’re big fans of the Pomodoro Technique. It involves working for 25 minutes, taking a five-minute break, and then starting over again. It’s amazing how much you can get done when you focus on a single task.
One way to put this into practice is with Forest. When you start the timer, it shows a tree growing on your phone’s display screen. If you touch your phone before the timer is up, the tree dies. But if you complete your timed session without touching your phone, the tree matures.
Even better, you earn credits for each successful session, which you can use to fund tree plantings around the world.
It allows you to use glide typing (sliding your finger from letter to letter), and more importantly, to search Google from within a text or email. No more opening a new window to find an address or phone number!
Another fun bonus: You can search for gifs and emojis from within the keyboard, too.
The first step in managing your time better? Knowing how you spend that time.
Rather than calculate it by hand, use a simple time-tracking app like Toggl. With a single click, you can start (and stop) tracking your time on different projects.
At the end of the week or month, you can pull up a report with how many hours you logged on each project. Armed with that knowledge, you can determine where you need to spend more time – and where you need to spend less.
Although I might spend too much time reading about productivity – and not enough time putting it into practice – I still think educational books are essential to achieving personal growth.
If you want to take a deep dive into time management or self-improvement, check out Blinkist. It summarizes popular non-fiction books into 15-minute recordings, which you can listen to during your morning run or commute.
On the free plan, you can listen to one pre-selected book each day. For $49.99 per year, you can choose from the full Blinkist library, which has more than 2,100 titles.
Yes, it’s most definitely cheating – and no, you can’t claim you “read the book” – but if you want to devour lots of knowledge in little time, it’s not a bad solution.
8. Google Keep
When you have a job and a side hustle (not to mention friends and family and pets and errands), your mind is often in several places at once. Ever thought of a to-do and then forgotten it before you could get to your list?
Enter Google Keep, a no-frills app and web platform for jotting down notes, ideas, and reminders. It offers voice transcription, color coding, due dates, and collaborators, plus the ability to backup and search all your notes.
Starting a side hustle is a smart way to pay extra money on your student loans. With these free productivity apps, you’ll work smarter – allowing you to stay sane and keep hustling.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 6 lenders of 2019!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
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1 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
2 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.89% APR (with Auto Pay) to 7.89% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 2.50% APR (with Auto Pay) to 7.27% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of April 17, 2019, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 04/17/2019. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.
© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
3 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the fixed rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular fixed interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the variable rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular variable interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
All credit products are subject to credit approval.
Laurel Road began originating student loans in 2013 and has since helped thousands of professionals with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees consolidate and refinance more than $4 billion in federal and private school loans. Laurel Road also offers a suite of online graduate school loan products and personal loans that help simplify lending through customized technology and personalized service. In April 2019, Laurel Road was acquired by KeyBank, one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies. Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association, a nationally chartered bank. Member FDIC. For more information, visit www.laurelroad.com.
4 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown.
All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 2.49% effective March 10, 2019.
6 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
|2.50% – 7.27%1||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.50% – 7.12%3||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.81% – 8.79%4||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.50% – 6.65%2||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.55% – 7.12%5||Undergrad & Graduate|
|3.00% – 9.74%6||Undergrad & Graduate|