How to Use a To-Do List App to Tidy Up Your House
Sometimes, we are so busy with business and the stresses of the daily grind that it’s easy to forget the little things. Household chores are easy to push back constantly, but staying on top of them is good for your mental health. Keeping your home environment neat and tidy can improve your mood and increase your efficiency elsewhere.
Luckily, even when our mind can’t keep things straight, we’ve got the technology to help with organization. Need some tips? Here’s some advice and a guide to the pros of using apps to track your household chores. You can even share to-do lists on iPhone!
Keeping the Family on the Same Page
How do you normally tell your siblings, partner, or roommates what needs to be done every day? If you just talk to them in the morning, they’re prone to forget. If you tape a piece of paper to the fridge, they’ll just ignore it. But if you get their Android or iPhone buzzing, they can’t ignore it forever!
One huge benefit to following chores on an app is that it’s easy to create a shared to-do list, notes, and calendars. Many of these programs have several features that let you share between accounts on the cloud, allowing a whole group to know exactly what has yet to be done. You can assign tasks to specific friends or relatives, in or out of the household, to make sure the cleaning gets done. Often, you can download these agendas and even set reminders, letting everyone know that the laundry is still waiting to be folded or that someone needs to go to the grocery store and buy milk.
That’s another major plus to tackling a list of chores through your Android, iPad, or other devices: using an app, you can set regular alarms and alerts. Stuff that might normally slip your mind – such as wiping down the kitchen or booking a haircut – will never be forgotten now, even without you checking in regularly. You can even set recurring notifications for things you need to do multiple days or once a week.
This basic functionality is almost always offered for free. You can improve your productivity and boost organization without spending any money. Yes, it costs nothing. Budget-conscious readers, rejoice!
Turn Work into a Game
There’s nothing more boring than doing chores. How do you make to-do lists fun? Turn it into a game!
Many productivity programs provide something called “gamification.” These features take work, chores, and other jobs, and turn them into games. As an example, you might feed the app a bunch of tasks you need to accomplish. Then, as you complete and check off each job, you’ll be gifted with experience points, which let you level up your in-game avatar.
This process especially works great for teenagers. When just asking them to do something isn’t enough, gamification can provide the push needed to get them excited to clean or contribute otherwise.
The first step is staying on top of your chores. Once you get past remembering to buy food and toilet paper, there are even more ambitious goals to conquer. Using the right software, you can start thinking ahead for the future.
Maybe you have some big projects that you want to fit in? You can use a digital calendar to schedule dates for your major goals, turning them into attainable objectives. This organization help can be great for something as small as repairing a piece of furniture to something as big as DIY building renovations.
You can even use this trick for help with major life events. For info on a wedding to-do app, click here.
Teaching the Kids
If you have children, you know that getting them cleaning or taking the dog for a walk can feel like an eternal struggle. While technology won’t magically make them care, it helps make things a little smoother.
First off, you can download an app to teach your children how to make a to-do list. It sounds silly, but many children are more apt to learn from a lecture that involves looking at a phone screen rather than scratching things down on a piece of paper. This is the perfect opportunity to instill lessons they can use for the rest of their lives on how to use tech to improve your living conditions rather than let them worsen.
A shared agenda can help teenagers remember everything that’s expected of them. With access to the same program you’re using and regular alerts, they’ll have no excuse for forgetting to empty the recycling or mow the lawn. That process can also help children feel more ownership over the chores, increasing their willingness to actually stay on top of things. If your children have access to phones, finding a program like this is a great idea.
Greater Efficiency through Computers
Human brains are amazing, but they’re not perfect at figuring out the best way to do things sometimes. Thankfully, the power of our phones is at our fingertips to help organize our lives.
Some handy software on your phone will have built-in tasks beyond your custom calendar agenda, offering tips you may not have even considered. Others can tweak recommendations based on what region of the world you’re located in; after all, someone who lives in a snowy northern state probably has a different set of day-to-day priorities for housekeeping compared to someone who lives in the sunny south.
Many of these programs also have built-in timers. These will let you catalog how long it takes to complete each task. Using that information, you can start to understand where you might be getting hung up and taking longer than you should on certain chores.
When You Just Need a Drill Sergeant
Many of the apps built to help with household chores are designed to be friendly and welcoming. Some people need more than that, though. Sometimes you just need a real kick in the pants. Thankfully, a few programs are happy to fill that role.
You can find some phone software that will not just tell you what needs to get done but yell at you to do it. It may issue hilarious insults or even swear words. This isn’t for everyone, but for those who just can’t get motivated any other way, a funny admonition can be just the push you need to get cleaning.
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