I, like many people, am in constant need of more time. My daily commute is three hours long. My workday lasts for nine. I try to get a solid eight hours of sleep. In the pie chart of my typical weekday, all 24 hours are routinely (and non-negotiably) spoken for by other things, except for roughly three precious hours. I split this sliver of time between exercise, downtime, chores, time with my husband, and any of the hundred other things that might come up on any given day.
Whether you’re a full-time employee or stay-at-home parent, we can share in feeling as though there’s simply not enough time in the day. I was thinking about this at a conference when attending a talk about developers’ tech stacks — all of the tools tech professionals use to streamline their workflow and increase efficiency.
(Cue light bulb)
What if we could apply this concept beyond our workday? What if we could create a tech stack for our lives — a systematic arsenal of apps to ease the burden of some our weekly “must-dos” and in turn make space for all that we’d like to do?
From laundry service to staying in shape, to finally getting around to that deep clean, all of the little pieces of our to-do list can truly add up. Here are my top picks for apps to optimize your time right from the palm of your hand.
For a Hand Around The House
Skip the gas station on your way home, and get your tank filled right from your driveway with Filld. Filld is a fully-mobile refueling service that sends professionals to fill up your gas tank at your convenience, 24/7. Use the app to mark your car’s location, choose your delivery time, and kiss the gas station goodbye for good.
Need help putting together that IKEA dresser, mounting your new TV or (finally) dusting the ceiling fan? With Handy, you can schedule next-day assistance from vetted professionals to help out with your home projects, cleaning, and even electric work and plumbing.
Rinse is an on-demand laundry and dry-cleaning service that picks up directly from your door and returns your clothes fresh and clean.
If you’re sick of rummaging through an overflowing closet, try Omni. Omni champions a lifestyle built around access and sharing, so you can have it all while owning much less.
Their storage and rental services will pick up your stuff, store it securely and deliver it back to you whenever you need it. You can also borrow items, like a vacuum, from other Omni users or rent out your stored belongings for a little extra spending cash.
For Your Health
Class Pass makes managing your workout regimen simpler than ever. You can book a wide range of classes from yoga to boxing, browse class reviews and even access video workouts remotely. More importantly, it makes working out more fun — meaning I’m much more likely to make activity a part of my day.
With our physical and mental wellbeing thoroughly entwined, part of making the most of our day is taking time to care for our emotional health. Talkspace provides online counseling sessions with licensed therapists via video chat or texts, day or night.
From guided meditations and soothing nature sounds, to sleep stories and playlists curated for relaxation, Calm helps you shed the stressors of your day and unwind with ease. Its 30-second guided deep breathing will help clear your mind, even in a pinch.
Movie Pass is the golden ticket to planning your Friday night. For just $8-10 a month, you can use the app to browse showtimes at theaters near you, choose a film, secure your spot and use your membership to stroll on into as many movies as you’d like.
Once you’ve picked out your movie, you can also make dinner reservations seamlessly. Enter your location, price range and cuisine of choice, and Open Table whips up a list of restaurants with…open tables. Click on a time that works for your schedule and consider your reservation made. No phone calls necessary.
When you’re dying for a night in, use Postmates and get takeout delivered from nearly anywhere without leaving the house. You can track your driver’s progress and even receive a notification when they arrive at your door.
For Your Wallet
Mint provides the ultimate assist in managing your money. Create budgets and savings goals through the app, and track your bills all in one place. Mint even categorizes your purchases so you can you can see how you spent your money each month.
Robinhood allows you to invest simply and cheaply. You can browse stocks, buy and sell directly through the app with no brokerage fee.
Want to invest but don’t have the cash (or the time) on hand? Invest in no time with Acorns. Acorns rounds all of your purchases up to the nearest dollar and invests that change into your stock portfolio. You can have the app make recurring automatic investments from your bank or even set up and manage a retirement account directly through your phone. Your $3.25 pour-over just became worth so much more.