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Insights: An app to kick you into action

By Ruth Lubembe | Published Sun, April 29th 2018 at 00:00, Updated April 28th 2018 at 23:03 GMT +3
There are also health and fitness apps, ‘women’s cycle’ apps, weather apps, audiobook apps, Bible apps, message apps and of course, social media apps, taxi apps, security apps, apps to help you manage your gazillion apps.

Thanks to our young ones, I am slowly starting to appreciate that there really is an app for everything.

Apart from games apps and mobile banking apps which, by the way, I think are as close to sliced bread as great things go (I can now count how many times in a year I see the inside of a banking hall, and I don’t miss it one bit), there are also health and fitness apps, ‘women’s cycle’ apps, weather apps, audio book apps, Bible apps, message apps and of course, social media apps, taxi apps, security apps, apps to help you manage your gazillion apps...

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The tree app

The point was cemented last weekend when our older girl told me she had just downloaded (yet another) app – wait for it – to help her beat procrastination! What??

Apparently, this new app involves planting trees. So every time you do your scheduled tasks on time, the trees you planted grow (virtually).

Every time you don’t, because of procrastinating, they shrink! In this age of heightened consciousness around environment conservation, I guess the shrinking trees are meant to tug on your conscience and push you to do what you said you would do and when you said you would do it so that the earth can once again be covered in trees.

And who knows - seeing whole forests grow virtually could lead to actual tree-planting, which is surely a plus.

I’m not there yet, but the app seems like a good idea for someone like me who just can’t seem to get working on the things I say I’ll do until deadlines are breathing hard down my neck.

 This is despite the fact that I often sit our youngest down to lecture her on the importance of planning and timing in order to get best results out of her school work and life in general.

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My lazy sofa

For instance, when I get back home from work or from safari, the third worst thing I can do is plant myself in my favourite seat.

The second worst is to get hold of the remote control, and the worst is not just to switch on the TV but turn to a channel showing a Naija movie or back-to-back episodes of House Hunters.

Let’s just say that by the time I finally decide to stop ignoring the voice of reason in my head and haul my reluctant body off said seat, the rest of the family will have been fast asleep and snoring for more than a couple of hours.

This in turn usually means that anything I may have planned to do first thing in the morning gets pushed back along with everything else planned for that day as I catch up with some vital sleep. Inevitably, I will be scrambling around most of the day to fulfill the tasks on my ‘to do’ list and end up tired, and in my favourite seat, remote in hand once again…

Oh, I have tried – I’ve read the books, attended the seminars, written down the resolutions, engaged in self-talk... but I will still put off especially those tasks I dislike until I can feel them looking at me disapprovingly. Only then will I get moving – running around doing multiple things at the same time while vowing, again, that next time I will leave myself with more than enough time to get things done.

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When I look at the family, it appears that the girls have taken after me. The boys on the other hand are wonderfully self-driven and can be seen hopping out of bed early in the morning or staying up late to stay ahead with their reports, assignments, reading or whatever.

We girls have resorted to trying to motivate each other to get things done before they’re due, without much success, until the app happened.

 I’m watching keenly to see how it works for the young lady – whether she’ll end up getting a medal for her re-forestation efforts or get arrested for decimating the landscape.

If the former, I might just take to planting trees myself, virtually as well as practically. Sounds like a win-win situation to me.

 

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