10 Apps to Help You Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

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Dado Ruvic / Reuters

After you’ve finished working off your New Year’s Eve hangover, it’s time to get started on your resolutions. You let your goals slide in 2013 because you thought surviving the apocalypse on Dec. 21, 2012 was accomplishment enough — that’s fair. But with thousands of self-help apps now available on the app stores for iOS and Android, you’ve got no excuse to be a lazy bum again this year. NASA is going to launch a spacecraft that will one day take astronauts to Mars, Google is going to sell you augmented-reality glasses straight out of science fiction, and Kanye will probably release Watch the Throne 2. If you are going to spend all your time squinting at a tiny cell-phone screen instead of interacting with other human beings, you might as well be doing something productive.

Here are some apps that will help transform you from a slacker into a renaissance man by Dec. 31:

Learn a New Language With Duolingo

Whether you want to brush up on the Spanish you picked up in high school or prepare for a vacation in Italy, Duolingo can help you quickly grasp the basics of a foreign language. The company’s addictive mobile app allows users to quickly fly through lessons that teach vocabulary, pronunciation and basic grammar. Learners earn points and level up by answering questions correctly, and there’s a social component that allows you to compete against friends for high scores. Currently Duolingo offers lessons in Spanish, English, French, Portuguese, German and Italian, with plans to expand to more languages this year.

Available for: iOS, Android

Learn How to Code With Codecademy

In our increasingly digital world, it’s useful to understand the nuts and bolts that make websites and apps tick. Codecademy has already launched a series of popular Web tutorials that teach Web languages like HTML, JavaScript and PHP. Now the company is offering bite-size lessons in coding on mobile devices. The iPhone app promises to teach users the basics of coding in an hour, offering simple lessons on how variables, functions and data sets operate generally across computer languages. The company plans to offer more mobile lessons in 2014.

Available for: iOS

Stop Smoking With MyQuit Coach

It might not seem like an app can help quell your cigarette cravings, but MyQuit Coach tries to use data to help people control their habit. The app allows users to input how often they smoke and when they have cravings, then set short- and long-term goals for reducing their daily cigarette count. The ability to blast updates to Facebook and Twitter can help smokers receive support from their friends too.

Available for: iOS

Exercise More With MapMyFitness

If you need more motivation to hit the gym, MapMyFitness may help get you off the couch. The app tracks 600 different types of fitness activities, including running, ballroom dancing and walking the dog. The program also helps you map out effective jogging routes and offers a strong social component so your friends can motivate you to exercise from within the app. The company behind the app was recently bought by Under Armour for $150 million, so expect additional features in the future.

Available for: iOS, Android, BlackBerry

Go on a Diet — and Stick to It — With MyFitnessPal

Though many people make resolutions to go on diets, following through can be a challenge due to a lack of willpower or accountability. MyFitnessPal gives you no excuse. The app has an exhaustive database of the calorie counts of over 3 million foods, so you know exactly what you’re putting into your body at each meal. The speed and simplicity of the app has helped it net 40 million users. And it’s yielded real results for people, like one man who said the app helped him lose 83 lb. (37.6 kg) in less than a year.

Available for: iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone

Keep a Journal With Day One

We all say we want to start keeping a journal, but few of us actually follow through. The app Day One makes the process easier by making journaling a multimedia experience. Users can attach photos to journal entries that can be as short as tweets or Facebook status updates. The app automatically logs weather data and even the number of steps a user takes in a given day. For those who don’t have the patience to write long missives in their Moleskine notebooks, Day One can help you keep track of the key moments in your life without having to broadcast every observation on a social network.

Available for: iOS

Run a Marathon With Nike+ Running

If you’re looking for a more specific fitness program, this Nike app is specifically tailored to helping runners prepare for long races. A coach feature offers specific training regimens for 5Ks, 10Ks, half-marathons and marathons. The app tracks your run times and distances to create a customized program tailored to your abilities. As with other fitness apps, it’s easy to blast your running data to social-media sites so you can humble-brag about what great shape you’re in.

Available for: iOS, Android

Save More Money With DailyCost

If you’re trying to save up for a big purchase this year or just improve your overall fiscal responsibility, DailyCost is a solid tool to get a grip on your finances. While popular money manager Mint is great for monitoring incoming and outgoing money in all your banking accounts, DailyCost aims for the much simpler task of logging your daily expenses. Users can easily input costs and categorize them in a variety of fields in as little as three seconds. Weekly and monthly spending charts let you evaluate where your cash went after the fact.

Available for: iOS

Meet That Special Someone With Hinge

There are already dating apps for hooking up and bribing women into going on dates with you, among other delights. Hinge attempts to strike a balance between the physically minded Tinder and the personality-driven old-school dating sites like eHarmony and Match.com. Hinge users still judge potential mates based on looks, but the app pulls in friends of your Facebook friends to establish a mutual connection, and offers suggested date spots based on shared interests. The app is currently available in Washington, Philadelphia, New York City and Boston, with plans to expand to the West Coast in 2014.

Available for: iOS, Android

Force Yourself to Keep Any Resolution With Lift

No matter what you’re pledging to accomplish in 2014, Lift will probably help you reach your goal. The incredibly simple app tracks how often you complete tasks that you assign yourself and rewards you with virtual check marks for being consistent. The task can be anything — drinking more water, praying, brushing your teeth at night. The goal is to turn aspirations into hard-to-break habits. Users pursuing the same goals support each other through discussion groups.

Available for: iOS, Android

4 comments
BestVirtualHelp
BestVirtualHelp

Great list! Lift is a really great app -- it really helps you stick to your goals and tasks throughout the day. Great for business owners! 

Quincy
Quincy

With the advancements that are being made with technology these apps can be of great help, but it all starts in your mind.  And so with that combination of mind and tech I believe 2014 can be a breakout year for the determined. 


Quincy Lucas

http://www.humanchessgameforunderdogs.com

Jaff
Jaff

Save more money with Easy Spending App on the App store