10 apps to reinvent you in 2016

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Jan 19, 2016 8:30:36 AM via Website

Clear your head
Mindfulness, the act of focusing on awareness, both in your mental and physical state, is becoming an increasingly popular way of managing stress, attention issues and overall well-being.
The free version of Headspace offers up 10 mediation sessions. All it asks of you is 10 minutes a day and listening to a calm, British voice guiding you through the process of finding your inner Chi. There are also unguided sessions. After you polish off those, you can purchase individual meditations (one off or Series) from the apps library of hundreds of self-soothing options. (iOS,Android)
Elevate Brain Training
Your body and mind feel good, but what about neural plasticity? Are you as smart as you used to be or want to be? Probably not (especially if you had to reread the last two sentences more than once). Elevate Brain Training works on memory, comprehension, math and concise writing. It actually starts by testing you on all these metrics, which can be quite daunting, especially when it comes up with a rating for you on all those factors. Once it has a benchmark, the training begins with 35 brain games (free version). You can get more training by paying $4.99 for the pro version. (iOS, Android)
Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock
There are the lucky few who wake up without an alarm clock. Then there’s the rest of us, buzzer hitters, alarm ignorers and overall sleep-walkers. We need something different to get us out of bed. Sleep Cycle Alarm clock tries to work with your own sleep rhythms to help you wake up more easily.
The app uses your iPhone’s microphone to listen to your sleeping (you keep the phone by the bed, as you always do) and then, based on when you set the alarm, it will wake you up during your lightest sleep phase, which should help you feel more rested than if you’re jolted awake by an alarm during your deepest sleep. Don’t worry about waking up late — if you set the app for 9 a.m., it'll start watching for a good time at 8:30 a.m. (iOS, Android)
Protect yourself
GT Recovery for Android
Accidentally deleted messages or contacts on your Android devices? Or lost photos from the SD card on your Android device? No need to worry now! GT Recovery for Android is capable of recovering messages, contacts, photos, video, audio and documents on/from an Android phone or tablet. Due to the ease-to-use interface, it's ideal for everyone. Scan, preview and recover. Simple clicks bring you what you want.
Directly scan and recover SMS, contacts, photos, video and more
• Recover photos, video, audio and documents from SD cards inside Android devices to a computer.
• Retrieve deleted contacts, including names, numbers, Email & addresses.
LastPass and 1Password
Isn’t it finally time to dispose of all those little slips of paper with your passwords for every service you use?
Apps and services like 1Password and LastPass take the password guesswork and management out of your hands. You simply remember one very strong master password and they’ll generate strong passwords for you, store them and retrieve them and even input them automatically (on the web and Android, at least). They’re mostly free, though the mobile and business options will cost you.
Better yet, if you can’t remember a long password, the latest versions of these apps will let you log in with your finger — as long as your phone has a fingerprint reader. 1Password: (iOS,Android, Windows) LastPass: (iOS, Android, Windows)
Organize your life
Perhaps you’d have more luck getting things done in 2016 is you had a little help. That’s Coach.me’s perspective. It lets you enter goals big and small, track your own progress and then use the app to hire coaches (they have over 5,000), starting at $14.99, to help you achieve goals. Once you sign up, you’ll get a steady stream of emails from your own coach pointing you to a ton of different goals and coaching options. (iOS, Android)

Google Photos
You have photos, Google has answers — perhaps the answer. Last summer, Google introduced Google Photos with unlimited cloud-based storage. All you have to do is install it on your mobile devices and let the app collect and store all of your photos (there’a also a desktop uploader to collect photos from your PC or Mac). The "Assistant" will suggest movies and collages from your photo collection, and it'll also notify you when contacts share an awesome photo or album.
The free version will store a high-quality copy of every picture. If you want the original resolution, though, you can only store up to your amount of allotted Google Drive space (you can always buy more storage). Even if you just go for the free option, think of the peace of mind that comes with knowing that all your priceless photos are stored safely in the cloud. (iOS, Android)
Put your financial house in order
Even before Intuit bought Mint, it was one of the best personal-finance services on the web. As an app and with the backing of Intuit, it’s even better; one-stop shopping for all your financial accounts, reports and budgetary matters.
Just pour all your account info into the app and you’ll instantly get a world-view of your spending habits, including cash flow, monthly budget, bill reminders and a spending breakdown. You can use that knowledge to make meaningful financial changes for the rest of 2016. (iOS, Android)
You know how when you pump gas you work extra hard to make the final bill round up to the nearest dollar? Stop doing that. In fact, for the rest of 2016, let the spare change bills come and then invest the rest. That’s the snappy idea behind Acorns. You give the app access to your main bank account and then every time you make a purchase — for, say, $1.25 — Acorns will take the remaining 75 cents and invest them in the stock portfolio of your choice.
The app tracks your investment performance, tells you about your latest round-up amounts, the overall size of your account and lets you deposit and withdraw funds at will. Just think, 2016 will be the year you save and, perhaps, make money without even really trying. (iOS, Android)
Work smarter
You can grouse and gripe about office productivity and communication, or you can do something about them.
Asana is a powerful project and team-management tool that helps you watch over projects big and small from start to finish. It’s easy to assign tasks and make sure everyone knows what’s due today, tomorrow and next week. You’ll also see when stuff is past due. (iOS, Android)

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Jan 19, 2016 12:46:06 PM via Website

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