We all want to start the New Year off right, and there are plenty of apps on the market that can help you achieve a happy and healthy 2024. Here’s how to build a digital life kit.
What is a digital life kit? Think about it as a collection of apps on your smartphone that help keep you productive, healthy, and happier over time. Here are some things you should consider.
- 1 Why build a digital life kit?
- 2 The best apps to go in your digital life kit
- 2.1 1. Notion — the best app to keep your life in order
- 2.2 2. Insight Timer — the best app to start meditating
- 2.3 3. Duolingo — the best app to learn a language
- 2.4 4. Things 3 — the best app for your to-do lists
- 2.5 5. Fitbod — the best app for workout splits
- 2.6 6. Down Dog — the best app to start that yoga routine
- 2.7 7. MyFitnessPal — the best app for tracking your nutrition
- 2.8 8. Stoic — the best app for philosophical inquiry
- 2.9 9. AllTrails — the best app to get outside more
- 2.10 10. Gratitude — the best app to start a gratitude practice
- 2.11 11. Productive — the best app for sticking to a habit
- 3 Here’s to an amazing 2024!
- The best food and cosmetic apps for a toxic-free lifestyle
- 7 of the best apps to reduce stress and anxiety this year
Why build a digital life kit?
Many of us start our years with resolutions that we want to keep. A resolution, however, doesn’t necessarily provide you a roadmap to get to the destination — it just gives you a goal to try to hit.
In my humble opinion, it’s a lot better to start with a New Year’s intention. Instead of saying, “I want to get fit in 2024,” you’d set an intention like “I will move more each day” or “I will practice yoga as often as possible.”
An intention, set this way, gives you space and helps ward off the discouragement you might feel when you don’t hit a specific goal. Intentions also provide an action to follow and not just a goal to achieve.
The digital life kit comes into play because it’ll contain apps to help you keep these intentions. Your smartphone is always with you, so it’s an excellent way to keep handy tools wherever you go.
The best apps to go in your digital life kit
With all this in mind, curating a digital life kit can look different for everyone. However, here is a list of some apps that can help you stay fit, get outside more, increase your productivity, and find some Zen.
Remember that these are just ideas — your digital life kit might look different. But some of these apps might align with your intentions this year; if not, they’re a good starting point when creating your own kit.
1. Notion — the best app to keep your life in order
Notion is an app that many people use to organize their entire lives. At its core, Notion is a note-taking and productivity app, but it also provides much more functionality than Apple Notes or a similar writing-focused platform.
Along with the ability to think, write, and plan, Notion provides tools for task management, project tracking, simple to-do lists, and bookmarking exciting content for later consumption. It may have a bit of a learning curve, but it’s incredibly powerful.
Notion is available on many different platforms and the web. It’s free to use, with some paid upgrades.
2. Insight Timer — the best app to start meditating
Meditation is something that can benefit just about everyone. From reduced stress and anxiety to increased empathy, meditating just five minutes a day is a simple and powerful way to upgrade your 2024.
There are many different meditation apps out there, but none provide the same experience that Insight Timer does. This app has the most extensive library of entirely free meditations on Earth and also comes with other features like an unguided meditation timer and free live-streamed yoga classes.
Insight Timer is available on iOS and Android. It’s a free download with some paid upgrades.
3. Duolingo — the best app to learn a language
Learning a language provides a host of benefits to your brain health, including improving your memory and boosting creativity. However, learning a second language in adulthood can be tricky, so it’s best to gamify the experience to make it easier to stick to.
Enter Duolingo. This is an app that just about everyone knows about, and it provides free language learning courses across a massive list of languages. If you haven’t downloaded Duolingo yet, let this be your sign to start off 2024 with language learning in your digital life kit.
Duolingo is available for iOS, Android, and other platforms.
4. Things 3 — the best app for your to-do lists
While Notion is an excellent platform for overall tracking and planning in your life, a dedicated task manager and reminder app are also great ideas. Things is an incredibly powerful platform for iOS that lets you create to-do lists and tasks.
Along with planning out your day, you can also manage specific projects and actually set particular steps toward a broader goal. It’s also a cross-platform app available on several Apple devices. (Android users can substitute Things with Todoist.)
You can get Things on the App Store. It’s available for $9.99 on iPhone and $49.99 on Mac, with no subscription fees.
5. Fitbod — the best app for workout splits
Going to the gym more is a common New Year’s resolution, but doing so as a beginner can be intimidating. After all, what are you supposed to know what to do with free weights or weight machines if you’ve never learned the basics?
Fitbod is an all-in-one platform for getting to know the gym. Each day, the app generates a customized workout based on your goals with exercises that target specific muscle groups. Each exercise also has an instructional video detailing how to do it, and Fitbod is also great for tracking over time.
Fitbod is available on iOS Android. It’s free to download with an optional subscription.
6. Down Dog — the best app to start that yoga routine
If at-home bodyweight exercises like yoga and pilates are more your speed, Down Dog is the best app to get you there. This is a feature-rich platform that generates a completely unique yoga session for you each time you use it.
You can customize the sessions based on difficulty and even change up the music and instructor’s voice. Along with the flagship yoga app, Down Dog also has apps for HIIT workouts, barre, running, and meditation, which are all included in the subscription fee.
Down Dog is free to download on iOS and Android. It’s free to use but has an optional premium subscription.
7. MyFitnessPal — the best app for tracking your nutrition
One key aspect of managing your overall health is keeping track of what you consume daily. Although many nutrition and macro-tracking apps exist on the App Store, MyFitnessPal is one of the most robust.
The free version lets you track how many calories you consume at each meal and incorporates your fitness data to offset calories consumed. You can quickly scan food products and with a premium subscription, even track specific macronutrients.
MyFitnessPal is available for iOS and Android. It’s free to download with an optional premium subscription.
8. Stoic — the best app for philosophical inquiry
If you’re looking for something different to add to your digital life kit, consider Stoic. This app is similar to your run-of-the-mill journaling or meditation apps, but it’s rooted in philosophical inquiry and the philosophy of Stoicism.
It also has a broad range of practices, from Zen Koan walks to guided journaling. There are also breathing exercises and meditations here — and everything is wrapped up in a pleasant and minimalist design.
Stoic is free to download, though some features require a premium subscription.
9. AllTrails — the best app to get outside more
Everyone can benefit from more time spent outdoors. Time in nature has been proven to increase your physical and mental well-being, boost your creativity, and even foster a deeper appreciation for the environment that you live in. Unlike a gym, it’s also generally free to go outside.
AllTrails is an app that can help you go outside more. This is an app that lists all of the public parks, hiking trails, and nature walks in your area. You can filter trails by difficulty, usage rates, and more. Additionally, the app also lets you track mileage, elevation gain, and pace.
It’s free to download across a variety of platforms, though some features require a premium subscription.
10. Gratitude — the best app to start a gratitude practice
The simple practice of being grateful for the things in your life can have profound benefits, as we’ve written about in the past. Because of that, a good gratitude journaling app is a must-have in your digital life kit. The aptly named Gratitude is one of the most popular.
At the most basic level, Gratitude lets you track things that you are grateful for each day. The app also has a host of other features, including tips on better living, inspirational quotes, and the ability to create your own vision board.
Gratitude is free to use, but some features require an optional subscription fee.
11. Productive — the best app for sticking to a habit
Research shows that it can take up to 66 days to form a habit effectively. A good habit-tracking app can help you stick to your good habits in the new year by tracking your progress and reminding you to stick with it each day.
Habit-tracking apps can be a personal thing, and you may already have a favorite. My personal favorite is the Productive app for its whimsical design and encouraging reminder notifications. You can set multiple habits, track them over time, and even customize the icon that represents them.
The Productive app is free to download but has some optional premium components.
Here’s to an amazing 2024!
With your intentions set and your digital life kit in hand, you’ll be well-equipped to start the New Year off the right way. The tools above, or the ones that you choose for yourself, will put you on the path to a happier, healthier, and more productive year.
Just remember that intentions are different from resolutions. They’re ways of being and existing, rather than goals that you can fail to achieve. Be gentle with yourself, and have a Happy New Year!