There is no denying that a sizeable chunk of our day revolves around computers. Whether we work from home or in an office, Microsoft reports the average American spends at least seven hours a day on computers.
And with our social and work culture embracing punctuality more so in recent years thanks to social media, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for many to stay organized and focused during those work hours. While it takes away from social time with family or friends too, it also drains us of productivity.
Yet, thanks to the advent of emerging technologies, there are effective computer tricks that can send our workload from a static stage to a more immersive, inclusive process that helps us uphold our overall efficiency.
Organize messages and folders
Whether it’s the folders on your desktop or messages in your inbox, having everything neatly structured helps streamline work for more productive success. Take time to go through files and folders and delete what you don’t need or save them to a cloud or TB drive; and then group such files and messages into folders or labels for easy access. Desktop apps like Franz help group chats from social networks like, Slack and Google Hangouts into one place for easy access — because the last thing you want is being unable to find something because it’s been misplaced.
Get productivity extensions for browsers
How many times have you opened up a dozen windows only to discover your browser has stalled and crashed? Oh, and did you reply to those emails as yet? There are several ways technology can work against us by hindering our daily efficiency. But to help you stay on track, look into adding practical extensions like OneTab, which not only organizes all open windows but saves you 95 percent of computer memory; or Boomerang, which lets you follow up and reply to emails conveniently, and even schedule them.
Improve laptop’s battery
By now we know how to improve battery life on our trusty iPhones, but what about your laptop? Preserving battery is an issue for all of us and when we get that unwanted notification to plug in, it’s a real nightmare. To improve battery life, look into reducing screen brightness, disable Bluetooth, reduce the amount of programs at startup and use lighter software that exhausts less memory on your drive. Programs like BatteryCare and FruitJuice help optimize battery life and figure out what’s a real energy eater.
Improve computer’s performance
Your computer knows a lot about you and it’s been through every single assignment you’ve ever worked on. Just like you deserve that spa day for all your hard work, so does your computer. If you start to notice it’s sluggish or being unresponsive, it’s time to do a “Disk Cleanup” and empty out old files no longer needed — or the ones that accumulate each time your computer crashes. Additionally, try to “defragment” your drive too as this makes accessing files on the disk faster, and response rate better. If that doesn’t do the trick, programs like CCleaner help optimize computer’s performance, but don’t go overboard and delete everything.
Use shortcuts on desktop and laptop
Who has time to move their mouse constantly to open up windows and find keywords on a webpage, right? Instead of taking the long route by clicking on commands, take advantage of your keyboard’s shortcuts. Available for both Mac and Windows, keyboard shortcuts make life a lot easier. Need to copy and paste? Hit ‘Ctrl’ and ‘C,’ to copy; and then ‘Ctrl’ and ‘V’ to paste. It’s super simple and the minutes you save right-clicking will turn into more productive hours.
While notifications are a great way to stay up to date with our family and friends, they can be distracting, especially if you have an approaching deadline and your mother will not stop tagging you on Facebook. Yes, we’ve all been there. But just like our phones have that ‘Do Not Disturb’ function, Mac and Microsoft allow for ‘Quiet Hours.’ Moreover, plenty of programs and extensions help you stay on track by disabling notifications from certain programs, and for how long — like, StayFocusd, which limits social media usage to 30 minutes a day.