Disclaimer: This article is not a paid promotion or sponsorship (although it should be), but I am simply giving all of you readers the key to success that I have discovered. Enjoy.
Let’s admit, life is hectic, and the hecticness of life is far greater when you’re a college student. There are endless papers and projects to complete, internships to apply for, resumes to keep up with, and organizations to stay active. These many responsibilities often leave us juggling way more than what our two hands or minds, for that matter, can handle. We often bite off more than what we can chew without the slightest execution plan in place. If you don’t have a routine or an efficient way of keeping up with all these things, well, chances are you’re probably doomed to fail. Doing things spontaneously or “when you feel like it” is okay, but after a while, this method gets old and you may frequently find yourself feeling disoriented, unorganized, burned out and/or unproductive. Last semester, I thought I had it all figured out. I would begin every day on a whim, with not the slightest clue to what I needed to complete that day and how I would complete it. I struggled to complete a task that could be broken into two days into five hours. Now, imagine that. Sitting at a desk doing the same assignment for FIVE hours. Sounds dreadful, doesn’t it? Believe me, it was. By no means is this evidence of procrastination, but it is an example of an unhealthy perfectionist-overachiever and a recipe for burnout. This method worked out for me for a good month or two, but I was an emotional wreck by the end of October and had hit my mental breaking point. I would force myself to do so many things in one day and somehow still manage to feel unproductive as if I hadn’t done a single thing. It was then, when my mental health was on the brink of being past the point of no return, that I said, “Something has got to give. I need a routine. I need organization. I need structure.”
Structured APP: The day to day planner
In January, I came across the app, “Structured,” and who knew it was the savior I needed. Structured is a daily digital planner that is available on the Apple App Store and compatible with the iPhone, iPad, and Mac (sorry, Androids). Structured allows you to plan out your weeks and months by intricate day-to-day planning, using the application’s tools to set specific times to start and complete tasks as well as finish them. However, no worries if you’re unsure of what specific time you want to start or end a task. Structured allows you to set minute to several hour-long durations and is very flexible in arranging set tasks and adding new ones that may come up. Even if you can’t complete a task, the app’s easy navigation allows you to set the same task simultaneously but on a different day with the scroll and press of a button. Don’t fret about forgetting to do something important because Structured is faithful in sending notifications to your phone to ensure that you start a task and finish a task on time to avoid falling behind and experiencing burnout. The best thing about this is that Structured is smart, simple to use, and it puts the fun back into organization and routine that was never there. You can color code and assign fun picture icons to tasks to symbolize what it is you need to do. For example, if you set a task to do hygiene, a fun shower icon automatically pops up, and if the icon isn’t what you prefer, you can choose from an array of icons to represent your task. It also allows you to include subtasks under major tasks. Also, if you’re the kind of person to have your plans spread among an array of apps, no fear because, once again, Structured is here. Its cloud synching capabilities pull important dates, events, and tasks from your Reminders and Calendar apps so you can enjoy the peace of having everything in one place. One of the best things about Structured is that there are no confusing loopholes and no annoying ads on the screen. However, to fully experience Structured, there is a one-time fee of $5.00, but that is the only catch, and I promise that it is worth it. I have been using Structured for a month, and it has made life so much easier.
Before Structured, I struggled to find a planning app that suited my needs and my overall expectations. Other apps seemed to lack the effort, creativity, and the ultimate wow factor that makes you feel fulfilled and eager to plan out your days. However, this opinion could vary depending on where you fall on the continuum of organization and routine. If you are like me, who tips between the “anxious overachiever” and “control freak perfectionist” meter, then Structured is unarguably for you. Structured helped me feel and be productive with simply doing three to four tasks a day, and after prolonged usage of Structured, you can determine how long it takes you to do a task so that you can plan your day based on what you are likely to accomplish. In addition, the structure of Structured (say that five times fast) allows you to see your progress and productivity that has been made over time. Structured not only helps you to be organized and productive, but it shows you how you have evolved in real-time. Structured is a timer, planner, calendar, to-do lists, reminder app, and habit tracker all in one. Truly a Godsend.
If you are not convinced by now, I do not know what else to tell you except, DOWNLOAD IT NOW! The icon is a pink and white circled checkmark. I guarantee that this app will lower the stress and the anxiety that comes with all of the many things you have to do. Instead of worrying about tomorrow, Structured truly helps you stay focused on today. Please do not let this unpaid promotion and unsponsored sponsorship go to waste. I promise you will not be disappointed by this app, and if you are, you are the problem :) – Signed a Structured stan