My productivity tool stack hasn’t gone through any major changes for years.
But because of the intensive, yearlong leadership program I’ve been taking, this has fast become a moving target.
So, here I share my current tool stack to help you find your path in 2022 and beyond.
Desktop Calendar Pad
I’ve explored why this is an indispensable part of my tool stack in a previous post.
I typically use it:
- To track upcoming meetings, interviews, and events
- To track income (in the memo section)
- As an editorial calendar, so I can keep my content queue (on various platforms) full
The calendar pad is great for record keeping as well.
Yellow Legal Pad
I used to use my yellow legal pad for my to-do lists.
These days, I find myself using it to take notes, project and contact lists,scribbles, and for the occasional short-form to-do list.
Because of that, I use it more spontaneously than in the past, and most of the notes I produce have a short lifespan.
Samsung Galaxy S7
I do not own the latest, flashiest phone on the market. I only upgrade after wearing down what I happen to be using at the time, and the Samsung Galaxy S7 is what I’ve been using for the last few years.
It’s easy to become a slave to your device, so I’ve turned off most notifications. I even deleted TikTok off my phone once I logged in on my desktop, because I only use it for marketing purposes.
My phone is great for capturing quick photos and videos, maybe the occasional thought or idea. Besides texting and calling, that’s the main way I use it.
iPad & Apple Pencil
I also read Kindles on my iPad, though I still prefer physical books to digital ones. An iPad is still lighter for travel.
This is where my to-do lists now reside. I don’t completely understand how this switch happened myself.
It could be because I hadn’t logged into Evernote in a long time, and when I finally returned to it a couple of months ago, I found it a more comfortable working environment.
It could also be that writing down the sheer number of tasks I have to do each week on a yellow legal pad is less practical than it used to be.
Dropbox is so integrated with my workflow that I sometimes forget that it’s a vital part of my creative endeavors.
I’m often moving a lot of files around – screenshots, pictures, raw video files – and often need to be able transfer these files from one device to another. Dropbox is a convenient tool for that.
Even if not for that, though, I use Dropbox for my staff writing duties at Music Industry How To as well.
Gmail, Drive, and Calendar are powerful productivity tools if used correctly.
Gmail is great for organizing your communication and filtering your emails.
Drive is highly searchable, and that makes it easy for you to pull up all your documents, spreadsheets, presentations (and anything else) at a moment’s notice. My Learning folder and LifeSheet are stored inside Google Drive, and I also have them bookmarked in Firefox.
I timebox my days inside Calendar each week now:
I’m also finding that Drive works well as a storage device. If I’m having trouble sending files over via email or Dropbox, Drive usually does the trick.
Because of the previously mentioned leadership program, I’ve had to get used to communicating on Slack, and have also been using it for my own team’s ongoing collaboration.
I still think of it as “just another app,” but I like that it’s highly searchable and you can use it as a file repository, feed reader, and so on.
Every team (and ambitious solopreneur) needs their own internal wiki, online bulletin board, or project management system.
Notion makes it easy for you to create a highly organized database with tables, calendars, to-do lists, and more. You can even embed media.
Although I still use Google Meet here and there, most of my video conferencing needs are covered by Zoom. It integrates nicely with most calendar solutions as well.
Almost all my writing is done inside Word.
Google Docs are fine, especially if I want to be able to write wherever, whenever on any device, but they don’t catch all my errors.
I have not used Grammarly, and don’t intend to. Word suits my writing style best.
I also use Excel for ledgers here and there.
Canva is nice, but I know my way around Adobe Photoshop better.
Photoshop is also far more versatile, and if you design in a professional capacity, you need all the power you can get.
I’m not the best designer in the world, and don’t claim to be. But Photoshop is part of my workflow because my various duties require it, and a different app (like GIMP) would just slow me down.
Campaigns and sales funnels would take me much longer to build with any other piece of software. 10XPro lets me set up websites, membership sites, campaigns, and sales funnels with the click of a button.
I will be setting up more products and programs over at Content Marketing Musician because of how amazing this piece of software is.
Remember – productivity doesn’t necessarily mean more tools.
But if you’re doing everything by the seat of your pants, guaranteed you’re sacrificing productive time.
Although I don’t come cheaply, as a champion of artistic success, I’m always here to support you. If you’d like my coaching on setting yourself up for an effective 2022, get in touch. You would also merit from a read through of my latest, The Music Entrepreneur Code – 2022 Edition.