One of the best things about modern technology is that it enables us to work smart instead of just hard. With computers, tablets, and smartphones, there is no reason why you cannot have the information you want with you at all times. Use technology so that you work smarter and not merely harder.
Anyone can work hard with technology, it takes someone special to work smart!
Once upon a time, mobile phones were called cell phones and they were large bulky items that did not fit in the typical shirt pocket. Today smartphones can accurately be described as pocket computers. If you are a work-at-home mom or entrepreneur with a small business like I am, your smartphone and tablet devices are amazing tools that can help you be more efficient and productive.
Years ago, I ran my law office in part because I had various PDA (personal digital assistant) devices. These devices synced with my computer once I got to the computer and plugged them in. Back then, the devices did not have wi-fi or internet connectivity. This meant that the work I did on the road was separate from the work at my office until I was able to get to the computer and allow the devices to talk with one another.
Things have come quite a long way. The smartphone I currently use doubles as a mobile hotspot for my tablet. My phone which has unlimited talk, text, and data costs me less than $35 each month! This means that for a little more than one dollar per day, I am connected to all the world around me.
When I am away from my office, I set my phone up as a mobile hotspot, put it in my tote bag. Then I use my tablet as a computer or phone (Zoom on the tablet is terrific). The tablet device I use is a 10 inch Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 which is a lightweight device. It can fit easily into a purse. My computer is a Microsoft Surface Go and which is a full computer in a tablet-sized package. This means I am less fatigued than I would be if I carried my full-size 15-inch laptop. This is an example of working smarter, instead of just harder.
I am not in favor of working 24 hours a day or being connected to the outside world at all times. I like to make the best use of my time and not waste my time. This means that while traveling on the train or by bus if I can get done work I would be doing if I was in my office, I feel like a winner!
Control your technology, do not let your technology control you.
You do not have to be afraid of technology and you do not have to be controlled by your technology. The first thing to remember is that technology in terms of our smartphones and tablet devices are tools like hammers and screwdrivers. Your phone and tablet devices are personal devices and you should treat them as such.
Do not try to use your phone the way your friends, co-workers, and fellow entrepreneurs do. Instead, use your phone and tablet in ways that work for you. For example, I am an online magazine publisher. I do not use my phone to capture all my personal moments. When I am with my family, my phone is in my purse (until the twins find it and start playing 2048). When it is time for me to work, I want to be able to get up and do the work I want, in the way I want to work. Set up your phone the way you want to work and use the phone and tablet as a tool not like it’s your master.
The first thing I do with every device I get is to add my calendar program. I keep my appointments, client hours, and to-do list all on my calendar. For me, Google calendar has been doing the job for me for more years than I can remember. It works for me because I can color code the calendars so that instantly I can see obligations personally, professionally, for my children, and for various clients. It translates to all my devices and there is no learning curve.
The next program that gets added to all my devices is OneNote. I like this program because it is a word processing program on steroids. It enables me to write all documents I need to write, sort and store photographs, set reminders, create slide shows, and other business activities.
Next, I add the Office suite of programs. I use Excel for my online magazine’s editorial calendar and business planning spreadsheet. The One Drive cloud storage program allows me to have my documents at my fingertips on any device I choose. Next, I have social media programs.
I like having all my information for work in my hands at all times. This means that while I will write notes on paper and even have a board of notes up in my office, I take photos of the wall and notes each day so that even when I am away from the office, I still have that wall of notes at my disposal.
If you are a person who is bound to pen and paper use your devices to take photos of the paper. By taking photos of the paper, you can still get things done if you are inspired while in line at the bank or sitting on a train while you commute from one place to another. The photos also allow you to keep your work projects moving if you decide to work at the local library or coffee house.
If you want to read more about technology, check out:
Technology Tip – Use Your Phone as a Personal Organizer – It is terrific to know that you can use your phone as a personal organizer and keep your life in order. Click here to read more.
5 Ways to Use Your Technology to Work Smarter -It is terrific to start using your technology to work smarter and not just harder. Click here to read more.
Also, check out our Confidence Tip of the Day YouTube channel for hundreds of videos on creating the confidence you need to succeed.
When using your technology, be sure to use all functions that will help you work in a way that feels natural and easy to you. For example, if you are an oratory person, talk to yourself aka your phone. Use the voice recorder function to create your to-do list, brainstorm, or keep track of information. When you take notes on the voice recorder you can listen to your words whenever you desire.
I am a big believer in self-motivation. If self-motivation is important to you, use the voice recorder to record customized pep talks for yourself and then use the alarm function on your phone to have the pep talks come on at various times throughout the day to keep you motivated. If you are a visually motivated person, create videos of yourself talking about things or of things you encounter that will spur you into action. Use all of your phone’s functions and capabilities to make your life easier.
One last note about using your phone and tablet as tools – streaming television. There are a great number of things going on throughout the world that I want to follow and understand. I often work in my home office where there is no television. I also work at our local library or a coffee house several days per week. When I use my tablet, I can stream MSNBC on my smartphone to keep up with world events while I work. I will even admit that sometimes, a marathon of television shows takes place. I am currently watching Dr. Who on Netflix as I work. The phone and tablet are tools I use to help me work smarter and happier.
20 thoughts on “Use Technology in Ways that Work for You”
I am the worst about unplugging. I started leaving all my devices outside the bedroom. That helps!
I really need to learn how to use my phone as a hotspot!
I’ve found that since I’ve gotten my phone/computer that I spend a lot more time doing other things instead of what I should really be doing. FB surely doesn’t help me either.
I work a lot online, so I use technology so much in my life. I agree that downtime is really important!
I so agree. I tried to get as much work done as possible whenever I can on my phone and I am just waiting and wasting time. Then I have more time for more productive things later.
Working smarter is my goal! I have gotten better but haven’t mastered it. I’m addicted to my iPhone!
I am very guilty of getting carried away with the time I spend. I’m tempted to switch to a flip phone… but they don’t make many these days. Boo.
I like this part the most “Control your technology, do not let your technology control you.” It’s so true. Thanks for sharing.
Making the most of your time is very smart. I am doing something wrong with mine, I haven’ tfigured out what yet. Maybe I just say yes too much.
Being able to enjoy technology at my own pace is such a great feeling. I need to start setting times throughout the day when I refuse to be on it.
I need to be less controlled by my phone, that is for sure. It is a hard balance though.
This is one thing I need to work on better. I can get easily distracted and need to focus better online giving myself time to unplug.
This is really good to keep in mind. I should really make a point of using online time for specific things and completely disconnecting from it when I’m done.
I agree that it is easy to let technology control you as it is too easy to stay connected all the time. My husband and I have to set times to turn it off.
I agree, technology has changed and fast! I think it’s good and bad. I like when my family travels because I use that as my time off from my phone!
I am constantly amazed at how technology has changed our world.
Definitely agree we shouldn’t be connected 24/7. Downtime is important!
I use a lot of technology in my life. I love how it makes things simpler for me.
I have definitely let technology control me before. I need to make sure I don’t let that happen.
I love my phone I just don’t’ love my bill. I also need to learn how to use my phone for more then Candy Crush and photos.
Comments are closed.