Balanced: Find Balance in Life

How do you keep your life balanced? You might use an app to track self-improvement items or maybe even by writing these items in your journal. The items I am referring to are typically not found on a GTD (Getting Things Done) list, but rather these are items which build yourself up daily. While I do not manage to complete all of the items on my list daily, I enjoy reflecting on this list and changing it as my desires and life goals change.

Many people reflect on self-improvement items at the turn of the New Year. The ongoing change forces reflection on the past and the future but the ability to re-focus and reflect might get lost in the daily hustle. Daily items can include something as simple as exercise, but if we really become honest with ourselves, there might special and private goals which might bring happiness everyday as we work toward them. I think becoming a better person is innate inside each one of us but the desire might get pushed under the daily stress. This is where Balanced proves its’ usefulness, because it offers gentle reminders to work on yourself throughout the day.

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Keep Life Balanced

The main feature of Balanced is providing a quick way to see how you are stacking up on the items that are important to you. There are several apps that are included in this category for a modified self check-in, including Habit List, and Lift. I personally have used both and each have their positives and negatives. So how does Balanced stick out from the rest? I like to think the design and suggestions for items to add to your list make it a strong contender.

Balanced relies on simple controls to navigate through the app and to mark items off your list.

Balanced relies on simple controls to navigate through the app and to mark items off your list.

Getting items into your list should be easy and quick and Balanced relies on four gestures to make navigation a breeze. Pulling down anywhere on the screen will reveal an activities screen which allows you add your own activity or choose from a suggested one by category. When viewing your list you can swipe to the right to mark an item complete or swipe to the left to skip an item.

If you ever need to edit an item or delete it just tap and hold on the respective item for a popover window to appear.

Adding Items

As previously mentioned, adding items is as easy as pulling to refresh to open the activities screen. One item that I really like about Balanced is it offers suggestions by categories to add to your list. Example of categories include Myself, Fitness, Creativity And Confidence. Under each category is a list of items that can be selected and added to your list. If you find one to add to your list, the Add Activity screen is loaded where you can choose an icon and frequency.

Items can be due on differing schedules which helps the app stand out from the competition.

Items can be due on differing schedules which helps the app stand out from the competition.

On the Add Activity screen I can choose how often I would like to complete the item. The differing schedules offer a lot of choice and helps your list not to become just a daily check-in of items. Finally, choosing an icon and pressing done will lead you back to your list where you can mark an item complete and go about your day.

Also it is important to note that you do not have to use the app’s suggestions at all. You can add as many personalized items as you like.

Tracking Items

The arrows underneath each item shows the progress of each item. The further an arrow gets to the right edge of the screen indicates if an item is either due or overdue. This provides a quick look on what is coming up and helps keeps you accountable to your list. To see a more specific look at an individual item, just press on one. This brings up a window that showcases a timeline of how many times this item has been completed and missed, and uses red and green indicators to show what days have been completed and the percentage completed for the individual activity vs the percentage completed of other items.

Tapping on an item reveals a quick summary of items completed. If you are unhappy with the results maybe pulling to refresh to add a better activity would be appropriate.

Tapping on an item reveals a quick summary of items completed. If you are unhappy with the results maybe pulling to refresh to add a better activity would be appropriate.

Everything Is Not In Balance

The first item I do not like about Balanced is the app’s icon. I do not understand the icon and how these colors refer to being in balance. I would prefer to see something more related to the act of balancing which might include a seesaw or walking the line. The next irritating item can be when you forget to check something off your list. In other apps when this happens you can go back a day and mark it complete. In Balanced it only offers you to view the current state of the habit. That said, Balanced does allow you to complete an item multiple times in a day. This could allow you to catch up on the days that were missed.

Conclusion

Becoming a better person inside and out is probably something we all need to do but may not spend a lot of time focusing on. It’s understandable, because we are all busy but a gentle reminder could be nice to make sure you fit in some type of self improvement. Balance makes it easy to add customized activities which can be customized by day, week, months or even years. By also offering suggestions on personal improvement, Balanced could become the starting point to a better you.


Summary

Balanced offers gentle reminders to improve yourself every day.

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  • http://minimalisten.tumblr.com Robin Lundgren

    The icon.. A balanced amount of the different colours? Seesaw, what a horrible idea.

    I like it. It does the job, it’s not intruding, gentle. It’s like having a little Osho guru type dude sit in your pocket waiting to tell you something good.

    Have got three different activities set. ‘Go out and shoot with the Zorki-4′, ‘Sit down & breath’ and ‘Skip that cigarette’.

    This is one of those apps I don’t think you could really rate with a 1-10 score. It does the job it’s supposed to do, If you don’t like it you don’t, If you do you do.

  • http://imeerocks.net/ Imee Malabonga

    The app’s no longer free, but I was able to download it while it still was. I’d probably give it a 9/10, the only reason being that the “Delete” function wasn’t as obvious as it should… I didn’t even realise that there were more icons than the four on the screen when I’m creating/editing a task. I agree with Robin, this app just does the job. Oh, and the developer was really quick with the feedback – responded w/in the day.

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