The new year is almost here and you’re already probably thinking of what you want to change or improve. For most people, that’s some form of diet or exercise. For others, it might be something as simple as remembering to floss every single day.
Let technology help you conquer your resolutions | Shutterstock
New year resolutions aren’t easy though. Over 88 percent of them fail every year, so be in that 12 percent who succeed. Regardless of what your new year resolution is, you’re going to need some help staying on track. And what better way to stay on track than to use an app on your smartphone designed to help build sustainable habits? Take a look at these two iOS apps that should provide some aid for achieving your goals this coming year.
Strides is a goal and habit tracker for iPhone and iPad. You can add just about everything you want to accomplish to Strides and check in whenever you’ve accomplished that task. For instance, add a habit of going to the gym three times per week. Then swipe right on that task three times to fulfill your responsibility that week. Or you can add goals — say, for weight loss — and constantly update your progress as you go along and finish at your end date.
The best part about Strides is that it has customized stats for each goal or habit format. For instance, you can choose a template for exercise, weight, drinking water, getting up early, reading, budgeting, meditating, saving money, sleeping, journaling, flossing or becoming free of debt.
Your dashboard is where you can view all of your goals and habits at a glance. Swipe right on one to check it off or enter a new number and swipe left to mark a lack of progress. Tapping brings you to the details and stats.
If you want to track your progress at the gym, you can see along a graph your days of success or failure. If you want to track your budget, you can see a progress bar and overall average since that requires a number input instead of a simple yes or no.
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Plenty of features are available in the free version of the app so you shouldn’t ever have to upgrade. But if you want to, Strides Plus comes with tags, filters, a passcode setting, goal notes and more for $4.99 per month or $39.99 per year.
Productive for iPhone has a singular focus on habits instead of both habits and goals. The result is a more streamlined app that’s easier to navigate, but at the cost of being unable to track certain new year resolutions.
Since habits are tasks you have to complete regularly, Productive only offers tasks that you have to repeatedly accomplish either on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. (You can also specify multiple days or weeks.) Then you can swipe right on good days or left on bad, unproductive days.
Tip: Unique to Productive is the ability to set habits based on the time of day. For instance, Productive can organize meditation and exercise under your morning habits, stretching in the afternoon, and an early bedtime in the evening.
Productive is also free. Though it’s not as feature-complete as Strides, it’s still worth considering if habits — not goals — are your only need. Productive has an upgraded version as well for a one-time fee of $3.99 that includes unlimited habits, a passcode lock, more detailed stats and better reminders.