Closed September 2017

Clutter Video Tip: 7 Ways to Be Smarter With Your Smartphone

The best gadgets are meant to help you Control the “KAOS” of daily life. But, if you don’t know how to use these gizmos, you may feel like you’re just using your old shoe phone. Watch this video to see some of the apps that can help you Get Smart from using the ultimate productivity gadget to the Max.

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Hi. I’m Lorie Marrero, creator of the Clutter Diet book and on-line program, and today we’re going to talk about seven ways to be smart with your smart phone.

Now, this is in response to an “Ask Lorie” question that we got. We’ve asked you guys, the viewers, to send in your questions for me to answer, so this is one of those. And you can submit your questions here in the “comments,” that would be great. I’m certainly going to share with you today some of my favorite apps, and that is always fun, but I also want you to think about how to consider your phone in a different way. So how to be smarter about your phone. Obviously, it is a phone, it is a camera, we love that, we love our phones. But I want you to realize that instead of hauling around clipboards and checklists and whole filing cabinets worth of stuff, we have so much available at our fingertips now that we can track, we can refer to, we can solve problems that we could never solve before, with these little devices.

So there’s a reason that Apple says, “There’s an app for that.” There really is. If you think of something that you need to solve, go look it up in the app store because I bet you someone did write an app for that. That’s happened to me a whole bunch of times. I’m going to share a couple of those with you today.

So I want to share with you these seven different categories of ways that you can be smarter. So the first category is Financial. You can keep track of your spending in real time with your on-line banking app. Also with Mint, you can check your budget. I have recently gotten much better about budgeting in my own life and it has really changed the way I think about my money. It’s very interesting. So Mint is a fantastic app that shows you color-coded how you’re doing on your budget – red, green, and yellow.

All right, so number two. Health. You can do symptom tracking. So, “How many times a day is my arm itching?” Or, “How many times a day am I coughing?” or something. You can track those with an app like Simple, and that will even send a report to your doctor. You can also track other things that we won’t mention in polite company here, but, for example, if your Aunt Flo is coming to visit, you can anticipate her visiting and you can figure out the frequency and duration of her visits. And that would be another good thing to track. And there’s many apps for doing that.

The third category is Fitness. So we have talked about this in another video. I love using My Fitness Pal to track my eating intake. And, you know, you can look at calories and different kinds of nutrients that way. Also I love my Fit Bit. Unfortunately, I’ve had to retire my Fit Bit for the last few months because I’ve been injured, and I’m really bummed out about it. But you can track how many steps you do in a day. So that’s a really cool thing to do for your health and for your motivation for your health.

Number four. Reference. Okay, this is a big category. Favorite app in the reference category is Evernote. We’ve talked about this many times. Hi, Evernote guys. And also Dropbox. So I have all of my files with me on my phone all the time. I can’t tell you how many times that has saved my bacon. I have been out somewhere, someone needs something, and I can send them a link directly to that file.

So, number five. Lists. So, obviously, grocery lists are fantastic. We have a whole video about tracking your grocery lists too. I use Grocery IQ. That’s my favorite grocery app. And then there are other lists that you might want to have. There’s a really good one called Toodle Do, and app that does mostly “to do” lists, but you can do a lot of different kinds of lists in it. And Evernote also does checklists, so you can keep packing lists and things like that in your phone, and that is always with you everywhere you go.

All right, category number six. Entertainment. So this category is where we have solved some problems here that we could never solve before. This just blows my mind. So I was trying to find a movie the other day on Netflix, because I like to stream my movies on the Internet. So I have a Roku. And I couldn’t find this movie on Netflix, and I thought, “Well, is it on Amazon?” It wasn’t on Amazon either. I couldn’t believe it. It was a really popular movie. I found this app, again thinking “Somebody must have written an app for this.” There’s an app called “Can I Stream It?” And you just search the movie and it searches all of the movie databases and it found that, “Yeah, there was a channel called Vudu that had this movie I wanted. And it tells you how much it costs and everything. There’s another app called Open Table where it eliminates the problem of making a reservation at a restaurant when you’re guessing who might have an open reservation. You can just find who’s got one tonight instead of calling around and getting rejected. Then, of course, we’ve all wondered, “What is that song?” and we’ve used Shazam to find out and it listens to the song coming out of whatever speaker you’re hearing it from and it tells you what the song is. How great is that?

So the last category I want to call Fly Swatting. And the reason I say that is, it just smacks a problem down like nothing ever has before. It is its own category. I don’t know, I just like the name. So Fly Swatting, it has just smacked down the problem of trying to unsubscribe to publications that come in the mail. This is an app called Paper Karma. I love this app. You take a picture of the mailing label on the catalog that you got in the mail and you’re done. And they unsubscribe you. It’s fantastic. It doesn’t cost anything.

Another thing that has just smacked down a huge problem is Uber and some of the other ride-share apps. I can summon a vehicle for me whenever I want to. So I love that. I travel a lot. I can always get a nice friendly driver.

Another thing that has smacked down a problem, fly-swatted a problem for me, is an app called Skitch that is related to Evernote. And Skitch allows me to take a picture or upload a picture and mark all over it. So think about what I do for a living and what I help people with – closets and spaces where I need to measure – I can just take a picture of the space and draw the measurements all over it instead of trying to hand-draw something else on graph paper. That has saved me tons of time and confusion.

And finally, my last little Fly Swatter app is called White Noise Light. I have actually slept in a hotel suite with a party going on in the living room of the suite with this app. It plays – I don’t even know how many different noises. From trains to rain to airplane noise and fans and fires and all kinds of lovely white noise sounds that will mask the other noise around you and allow you to sleep or concentrate or whatever you need to do.

So those are my seven ways to be smart with your smart phone. I know you have some that you want to share. We would love to hear that, whether it’s for Android or Iphone. Please let us know in the “comments.” We love your comments. We enjoy working with you here on the YouTube Channel. Love hearing from you. So also remember to subscribe to our channel at And we’ll see you next time. May you always be happy and grateful for having more than enough.

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