We are living in stressful times that require constant adaptation. If you’re having trouble remembering basic to-dos, you’re not alone.
Persistent stress and worry take a toll on your brain and cause what’s known as “brain fog,” which can then lead to discomforts like running out of toilet paper and forgetting to pay your electricity bill on time.
Automating many administrative and household duties can mean fewer headaches to deal with during your week. Here are some things you can automate to make your life a little easier:
1. Your Coffee Supply
The last thing anyone needs is to wake up and find out they’re out of coffee because grabbing a new bag of beans slipped their mind at the grocery store.
A lot of coffee brands have automatic subscription services so you can “set it and forget it” and let your coffee come to you at regular intervals, making sure you never run out. Check out companies like Korean American female-owned Bean & Bean or these black-owned coffee brands, most of which offer subscription plans.
Anna Dearman Kournick, time management coach and host of the “It’s About Time” podcast, said her favorite automation is the weather forecast she set up through the IFTTT.com site.
“Every time rain or thunderstorms are forecast in my area, IFTTT automatically adds an event to my calendar for that day,” she told HuffPost. “At a glance, I know whether or not I need to hold an umbrella before I walk out the door. It’s so simple, but it can make a big difference!”
3. Vital Cosmetics
Avoid running a last-minute pharmacy by putting toilet paper, tampons, and other regularly needed toiletries on an automated subscription service. Any toiletry can be subscribed to at a major e-commerce retailer like Amazon, but there are also companies that offer plans for specific items.
As for tampons and pads, there’s Lola. The Athena Club has razor kits, shaving creams and body washes that you can send yourself on a subscription basis, in addition to liners, pads, and tampons. For a toilet paper roll subscription with plastic-free packaging, try Who Gives a Crap & Tushie.
Alan Henry, services editor for Wired magazine and author of the upcoming book “Seen, Heard and Paid: The New Work Rules for the Marginalized,” recommends automating different percentages of your paychecks to be deposited into different accounts. .
With direct deposit, most people choose to put their entire paycheck into our primary checking account, “but automating your finances helps you get ahead of the process and really pay yourself first,” he said. said.
Once you know what your budget is, keep a checking account that exists just to pay rent or expenses like mortgage, groceries and Netflix, Henry explained. Then split the remaining money to be deposited directly into your savings account and/or retirement accounts. Henry also creates a separate account with his card just for making money purchases.
“It’s set-it-and-forget-it,” Henry said. “As long as your income never changes significantly, you’ll be able to trust that your bills are paid, that you’re saving money for an emergency, such as a medical bill or accident. as well saving for retirement or your future, And You can freely swipe your spending card, knowing that all the money in that account is for you to play with however you wish.”
5. Your bills
After direct depositing a portion of your check into a savings account, set up auto-pay for regular charges like cable, rent and utilities. While this may sound like a recipe for disaster, most sellers will send you an email telling you what each month’s fee will be, so you have time to address anything that seems unusually high or wrong. Is.
“Deposit enough from your paycheck [your expenses] account, and set up those expenses to automatically pay your bills from that account, preferably on a timetable that works for you so you know when it’s all coming,” he said.
6. Your To-Do List
“I set up recurring weekly and monthly administrative to-dos in my favorite productivity app,” said Rachael Isip, a productivity consultant who is Todoist.,
“I do this for both business and personal items,” Isipp explained. “It saves me time and energy, because I don’t have to repeatedly think about what needs to be done. I just open the app and get to work.”
7. Your Inbox
If you’re regularly interrupted by dozens of emails, set up a filter for your inbox. For example, maybe you want to red flag every message from your boss or mom for immediate visibility.
You can make it so that certain emails are labeled in the color you choose, or marked as important, or automatically sent to Trash or Spam. That way, checking your email takes just a few clicks instead of a long scroll that requires concentration.
In Gmail settings, you can choose to create new labels and associated filters, or simply create new filters to automatically sort your mail. You can then choose what action you want to take with these emails.
In Outlook, go to the Home button, click on the Rules button and then select the Create Rule option, through which you can assign tasks to emails under certain conditions.
Similarly, for Yahoo Mail, you can click on Settings and then More Settings, then select the Filter option. From there, you can add a new filter for your email folders.
Automated dispensing for medications can be a time saver. Several major pharmacy chains, including Walgreens and CVS, have options for setting certain prescriptions to auto-refill with home delivery.
For people on multiple medications, PillPack refills automatically and can help organize your pills into single-serve packs at the time you need to take them.
9. Dosage of the drug
There are serious consequences for taking or missing the wrong dosage of the medicine. Automating your or a loved one’s medication can be a big help.
Automatic medicine dispensers come with a variety of features to prevent tampering and offer caregiver features. Hero, which comes with a smartphone app, for example, alerts the phones of both users and caregivers when a dose is missed.
To see which dispenser might be right for you, check out the in-depth recommendation list compiled by the senior care product author at The Senior List.
10. Pet Food
If you’re constantly distracted during the day, keeping pet essentials like food, treats, and toys on frequent delivery can be a relief to your busy brain (and ensures that your furry darling will never leave ).
Chewy, Petco, and PetSmart offer automated shipment options for commercial pet foods and supplies. For dogs that require customized meals, The Farmers Dog, Phnom Nom, Ollie and PetPlate are some of the most well-known specialty food subscription services.
Cat Person is a subscription meal service for cats with high protein requirements. People with cats who prefer freshly cooked wet food or freeze-dried raw food may see smalls. For cats in need of raw food, Bobcat Raw Food and Darwin’s Natural Pet Products have subscription options.
11. Pet Toys and Treats
If you have a pet that gets bored easily, a pet toy subscription service can help keep them entertained while you are busy. Subscriptions can be especially helpful for those whose chew pets ensure that toys don’t last too long.
For example, Barkbox sends dog owners a monthly selection of themed toys and treats for furry companions to chew and chase, while Meowbox sends curated monthly toys and treats to cat owners. And if you’re a fan of cats, CatLadyBox sends cat toys as well as shirts, jewelry, and home decor related to cat toys in your subscription.
12. Commonly sent emails
If you find yourself composing the same email over and over, switching to email templates can be a huge time saver. Gmail and Outlook, for example, both have email template features where you can draft and save templates for various email scenarios, such as “following up.”
13. Uninterrupted Focus Time
According to research from the University of California, Irvine, when we are interrupted at work, it can take an average of 23 minutes to get back on track. Eliminate these interruptions by using calendar assistants like Clockwise, which integrate with tools including Slack and Asana to reduce distractions and let coworkers know you’re unavailable.
Clockwise’s Focus Time feature, for example, can detect two hours of time for intense-focus work in your weekly calendar and prevent coworkers from booking meetings on a shared calendar during those hours.
Avoid easy spelling errors with browser extensions that proofread your writing for you. The Grammarly app for Windows or Mac will provide spelling suggestions in documents and emails.
15. Your Mail
Never wonder what’s coming in the mail and when by automating daily heads-up through the US Postal Service’s Informed Delivery Program.
Once you’ve created a USPS.com account and signed up for the Informed Delivery service, the agency will send you an email each morning with a digital preview, which will deliver that mail to you later in the day. It will also tell you which packages are arriving so you can track and reschedule them.
When you know there’s only going to be junk mail, you can skip a stop at the mailbox and do literally something else with your time.
16. Meeting Notes
Instead of taking notes by hand for meetings, you can automate this terrifying task with the note-taking tool Otter Assistant. With the permission of attendees, he can transcribe video meetings for Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet.
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