The first week of August was National Simplify Your Life week. With the constant hustle and bustle of modern life, we find ourselves with more and more to do, keep track of, and contend with. We also find ourselves with a growing and collective desire to live life a little more simply, ridding ourselves of the unnecessary and consolidating what matters to us. Thus explains the need for a national week celebrating the art of simplifying. As summer winds down, and we ready ourselves for another fall, another school year, and another return to less carefree days, we may be looking for ways to simplify our lives. One useful way to do so is by utilizing the free resources presented to us on the Internet in the form on online calendar applications and online organizing tools. These websites make simplifying simple by providing easy-to-use resources that allow us to organize our life in the form of our appointments, activities, personal contacts, notes, and reminders. Let’s discuss four online options that can make your life a little more simple and organized:
- Cozi.com—This website has really captured the online organizing market since its emergence in 2005. Offering what had previously only been offered to businesses in the form of Microsoft Outlook and the like, this website offers a free family calendar system that is aesthetically pleasing, easy to get started with, and practical to use on an ongoing basis. Full service in its capacity, this application provides a family calendar, shopping lists, to do lists, reminders and messages, family journal, photo collage screen saver, and mobile access. Perfect for today’s on-the-go family that wants to stay on the ball.
- Famundo.com— This website is an alternative to Cozi.com or Google Calendar that will work for families or organizations. This no-cost website offers plenty of sharing possibilities between families, friends, and organizations. It offers an online calendar, messages, address book, to do’s, reminders, photo sharing, remote document storage, blog capabilities, and a list manager. The website is free for families and community organizations, but the Famundo for Families Plus option offers some additional perks, like added online storage and syncing to other applications, for under $5 per month. If you have a lot to share in your schedule, this resource may be for you.
- RememberTheMilk.com—If life often seems like one big “To Do” list, this website may make you feel a little more at ease. This site is all about task management, and helps to consolidate all of your tasks in one collective spot, versus being jotted down on various notepads, sticky notes, whiteboards, and random scraps of paper. Never lose a list again when you utilize this application on your mobile phone. Since its launch in 2005, it has helped 2.5 million users manage and share tasks, get reminders, and “reinvent the to-do list.” If you are constantly on-the-go and want to bring your lists with you, this application will help you to never forget the milk again—or anything else for that matter.
- Evernote.com—Sticky notes were a great invention, but it seems that our society has become obsessed with them. If you are ready to put down the sticky notes and learn to combine all of your notes, reminders, and facts in one central location, Evernote can help. This website allows you to capture every piece of information, moment, or idea that you come across, and organize it online in way that will allow you to refer back to it. Your notes can take on the form of a text note, web page, photo, or screenshot, and then captured, allowing you to go back and search for your items by keyword, title, or tag. Consider this your high-tech file cabinet storing all of the things you want to know and not forget. It could be especially helpful when organizing a project, event, or remodeling endeavor.
The change of a new season and a new school year can be the ideal time to start a new way of simplifying. By using these resources and others that are available, you can provide yourself and your family with the calmness, productivity, and efficiency that an organized life can bring—available all at no cost to you.