Ok, so maybe saying that they changed my life is overstating it a speck, but they have made a significant impact. The first one is called Plant Nanny. As you may or may not have heard me preach, you need to drink ample amounts of water every day. I see so many patients that come in that are on numerous medications for symptoms/ailments that are directly linked to dehydration. Constipation, fatigue, headaches, migraines, stomach issues, dry/itchy skin, the list goes on. So why is something as simple as drinking water, so hard to do?
I stumbled upon Plant Nanny a couple of months ago and can honestly say that since April 2nd, I have had a minimum of 64 ounces every day. The biggest thing that I noticed for myself is a decrease in muscle cramps that I have as a result of some old nerve damage in my leg. It hasn’t been easy to get in all of the water, but I made it a priority. It was challenging while travelling and flying, but I just planned ahead.
So, how did the app help? Plant Nanny is a free app for iPhone and android that allows you to plant a cute little plant. Throughout the day the app reminds me to water my plant. Something about not wanting to see this cute little plant die (never mind that I actually need the water myself!) that makes me feel accountable to drinking all of my water. As you get more days of drinking all of your water, you can earn seeds that unlocks additional little plants. It sounds so simple and silly, but for myself and those that I’ve shared the app with, it’s made all of the difference in the world!
The second app that I’m currently using all the time is called Forest. This is a productivity app that is $1.99 (don’t worry, I’m not a sponsor). With Forest, I “plant a tree” for any amount of time and then essentially, I can’t use my phone until the time is up or the tree will die. If I try to click out of the app, it will give me a warning to go back to the app or the tree will die. Again, it’s pretty silly, but for some reason that reminder not to use my phone is enough to snap me out of the habit of checking it incessantly. I have been using it a lot while driving. Texting and driving is an awful habit, so I will set it for 30 minutes each way of my commute. There is also a Chrome extension for work computers that allows you to blacklist certain sites (and white list others so you can still use them). The nice part of both the app and the computer option is that you can easily click out of the app in an emergency, but it’s just enough to make you think twice.
Sometimes, it just takes finding out what works for you in order to hit your goals. These days our phone is always just an arm’s length away, why not put it to good use! What are some apps that are making your life easier?
- Dr. Cait