Time is a precious but pesky little fellow. If we’re honest, most of us have a difficult relationship with it. No matter how hard we try or how many fun clocks we have, there’s no stopping that constant tick-tock.
At best, we can look for clever ways to manage our time more effectively. Beyond getting a watch that projects the time onto your skin or a clock that tells the time in words, we’re talking about getting organized. Because, while you may not be able to beat time, you can get the most out of every second. These five apps will help you use your time more efficiently and, who knows, they may even save you a second or two.
1. Tiempo: This is the perfect solution for small business owners and freelancers looking for a convenient and reliable way to track billable hours. Instead of worrying about logging hours, the app frees you up to do more important things… like actually getting work done. In addition to tracking hours worked, the app makes it easy to get hours approved and issue invoices. (Free on iOS, Android and the Web)
2. Hours: Finally, a visual time-tracking app which makes it both simple and fun to keep tabs on how you’re spending your time. Using timers, you can easily track tasks and activities which are then displayed on different colored timelines. There are also handy notifications to remind you to start and stop timers. This is a great choice for time management, tracking billable hours or just boosting your productivity, quantified-self style. ($9.99 on iOS)
3. Timely: Love your calendar but wish you could do more with it than schedule upcoming events? Then you need Timely. This nifty app will turn your calendar into a time tracking genie, helping you see just how thinly you may be spreading yourself. For teams, Timely will make it easier to divide the workload evenly. Using the app, you simultaneously schedule and log hours. First, you’d estimate how long you expect your tasks to take. You then use the app’s timers to see how long it actually takes you. (Free on iOS and the Web)
4. Timeful: Using a sophisticated algorithm, Timeful helps you prioritize how you spend your day so you always have time for the more important things. You can link Timeful to your existing calendar apps such as Google Calendar and iCal. You then add the things you need to do, such as buying groceries as well as those fun, more personal to-do list items you never seem to get to, like getting a manicure. The rest is up to Timeful. The app uses this information as well as data about your behavior to create a customized calendar just for you. Timeful’s unique, scientific approach to time tracking helps you make the most of your time. (Free on iOS)
5. Chronos: This app runs in the background of your phone and quickly makes you aware of just how you spend your time. Chronos is unlike any other time tracking app. Instead of simply tracking how many hours you spend doing something, it focuses on meeting goals. After downloading the app, allocate time to different activities such as getting eight hours of sleep a night or going to the gym for 30 minutes daily. Chronos’ insights might surprise you and help you map out a better way to spend your day. (Free on iOS and Android)
Do you keep track of how you spend your time? If so, what are your favorite time tracking apps? Share your thoughts in the comments below.