the 16 best programs to boost productivity, reduce stress and get your message out there

Technology is a double-edged sword…

On the positive side we are able to increase our productivity to levels never before thought possible, on the negative it has made the world that much more competitive.

Computers were created with the thought that they would help eliminate many of the menial jobs that we used to do thereby freeing up more time for us to enjoy life with.

It was only half true.

Sure, we have been able to make many of our daily tasks easier but when I look around it seems that no one has more free time, in fact, it’s just the opposite.

The 40-hour workweek that my father’s generation grew up with has been replaced by 60 if not 70 hour workweeks.

Just last week a client was telling me they started at 8am every day and finished between 10 and 12 at night. That’s a 16-hour day…a 90-hour workweek!!! What the heck is going on?

The Internet and smartphones have ensured that we’re always within reach but that doesn’t mean we should always be available.

We are not machines and need rest and relaxation to ensure we perform at high levels of efficiency.

Personally I love computers and have found ways to reduce my own stress and in turn increase productivity.

I did so with the help of some very helpful programs, 15 to be precise.

  1. Skype – Free Telephone
  2. Pamela – Records all Skype calls to use as interviews or review at a later date
  3. iTunes – Music organizer (no program comes close to the organization of iTunes and why I believe the iPod dominated the market for so long)
  4. Vuescan – Super easy scanner software, works with every nearly every printer ($39.95)
  5. Picasa – Photo Organizer
  6. Dropbox – Easiest file transfer system available (share files with business partners and friend quickly and easily)
  7. XMarks – Transfer Bookmarks easily and smoothly between computers
  8. Lastpass – Forgotten your password? This program eliminates needing to keep track of every password you have
  9. Camtasia – Screen capture, great for turning audio into videos for YouTube ($299)
  10. Soundforge – Best sound editing software (highlight, cut, paste, easy to use – $64.95)
  11. OmmWriter – Best writing software for authors who want to minimize distractions
  12. Stardock Fences – Organize your desktop
  13. Firefox addon VideoDownloader – Super easy, super convenient tool that allows you to download videos to your desktop for offline viewing
  14. YouTube – THE education network with training videos on everything you can imagine (and a great place to get your message out there)
  15. LinkedIn – THE business network (great tool for professionals wanting to share their knowledge with others)
  16. Facebook – THE networker (link to thousands of people all over the world, easily and quickly)

Ok, I know the last three weren’t programs but I’d be crazy not to mention them.

Most people aren’t tapping into the incredible potential FB and LinkedIn have in helping your business and creating your presence online.

Here are just a few of the things you can do with FB:

  • Offer free services to potential clients
  • Share valuable information instantaneously with existing clients
  • Create campaigns and promote it to a targeted audience (location, age, interests)
  • Develop relationships

It’s not just a tool for reconnecting with long lost friends and sharing pics of your holidays but it’s an essential business component in today’s fast moving world.

16 tools that reduce stress, boost my productivity and help me get my message out to you.


Adrian Shepherd

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