The heart of tech is coming to the heart of the Mediterranean. Join TNW in València this March 🇪🇸

This article was published on January 4, 2016

10 tech tools to help you crush your New Year’s resolutions

10 tech tools to help you crush your New Year’s resolutions
Jelle van Wijhe
Story by

Jelle van Wijhe

Jelle is data whisperer and content sherpa for Index. He enjoys tinkering in backend dev and winning at squash. He's also TNW's not yet deth Jelle is data whisperer and content sherpa for Index. He enjoys tinkering in backend dev and winning at squash. He's also TNW's not yet dethroned champion of ping pong.

2016 is here and now that the party’s over, it’s time to bounce back from the tranquil holiday season and get to work.

The first day of work of 2016 brings with it the dread of a dawning realization for most… you’ve made New Year’s resolutions, and you have to stick to them. Or, at the very least, you should give it the old college try.

According to a study by the University of Scranton published in the Journal of Psychology,  45 percent of Americans usually make resolutions, but only 8 percent are successful. It also found that those who explicitly make resolutions are ten times more likely to succeed in accomplishing them.

One of tech’s greatest assets is its ability to help people accomplish everyday tasks, and challenging long-term goals, more easily. Naturally, plenty of tech out there can be helpful in sticking to your resolutions. With technology at your side it’s easier than ever to help raise the resolution success rate above 8 percent.

We took the ten most popular New Year’s resolutions from the study above and found an app or service that received funding in 2015 to help you be your best self in 2016.

10. Spend more time with family


The reality of the modern world is that people often find themselves unable to easily travel home to see their family. However, you don’t have to be with your family to spend time with them. Oncam is a video calling service that allows group video chatting and the ability to watch youtube videos with your friends (or in this case, your family). No distance created by the digital nomad lifestyle can stand in the way of you seeing and interacting with your family.

9. Fall in love


There are many obvious choices in this category: your tinders, Match.coms, and OkCupids. But what about serendipity? Isn’t love all about chance, running into that special someone by some stroke of luck or coincidence?

Enter Spotted, a new kind of ‘dating’ service that allows you to reach missed connections; that person you had a moment with on the bus, the cute guy or girl you saw in the bar but didn’t approach. Spotted let’s you send anonymous notes, so you can find out whether the connection was mutual before making a date.

8. Help others achieve their dreams


Public Good is a new social startup out of Chicago. Their mission is to make online philanthropy more accessible to the masses. It allows people to donate easily and directly to charities of their choice. Help someone achieve their dreams by giving to a campaign for children’s literacy, education initiatives for disadvantaged populations.

7. Quit smoking


Current or former smokers will tell you that quitting smoking is one of the most difficult things to undertake. But like many long term goals, the key to success lies in focusing on the day-to-day. Kwit helps you do that by adding gamification elements to your process, tracking your progress with statistics and rankings. Seeing that you’re reaching towards your goal every day is sure to give you that extra boost you need every day to stick with it.

6. Learn something new


Learning takes time, no two ways about it. That doesn’t mean you have to commit a lot of time at once to learn new things. Coursmos is built on the idea of “microlearning”, learning little bits at a time in short spurts. Ideal for the ever-busy entrepreneur, many video-courses found on Coursmos are between one and three minutes in length, and combine into modules. This is an open learning platform where you can learn on your own time, ideal for accomplishing that new year’s resolution.

5. Get fit


Getting fit is all about consistency. You have to work at it multiple times a week and not give in to the inevitable bouts of being unmotivated or thinking you “just can’t find the time”. The best way to avoid common pitfalls is to find a form of exercise you actually enjoy, so that you’ll kick yourself for missing out.

Sportsetter can help you do that with its fitness trial platform. The mobile app provides a large amount of free trials for anything from gyms or yoga classes to martial arts or extreme sports. There’s no subscription fee so if they operate in your area (they recently expanded to the UK) it’s an excellent way to figure how you want to get fit and stick with it!

4. Enjoy life to the fullest


Let’s be honest, there may not be any one tech solution to this one. Enjoying life to the fullest is about being in the moment, loving what you’re doing while you’re doing it. If anything, most tech options here only serve to distract from that.

We recommend taking time at least once a week to do something you love with someone you love. There’s no better way to enjoy life than to live it.

3. Spend less, save more


Anyone who’s ever taken the time to track their personal expenditures can tell you that they were shocked to find out how much they could save by making simple adjustments. Buying one less coffee per week alone can save you an easy $15 to $20 a month, which easily converts into a week’s worth of meals if you buy the right ingredients.

The key to spending and saving is seeing where your money’s going. Moneydashboard aims to help do that by providing a hub for all your expenditures. You can track what you’re spending money on, from which bank accounts, and set goals to work towards. With its easy-to-understand visualizations spotting the hole in your wallet will be easier than ever.

2. Get organized


Spreadsheets are the age-old solution to organizing information. They’ll often do the job just fine, but they can become bloated and difficult to navigate. Airtable aims to solve this problem by leveraging the power of relational databases to organize your data.

Think of it as an advanced spreadsheet with much more efficient search and filter capabilities. With the ability to collaborate with teammates and easily attach files through several different popular services (such as Evernote, Dropbox and Google Drive), Airtable has everything to help you do more with your data.

1. Lose weight


The most popular new year’s resolution is to lose weight. Rightfully so, who doesn’t want to shed a few excess pounds after the Thanksgiving-Christmas-New Year’s trifecta of  overindulgence?

Noom is an app that helps you stick to your diet. Using a database of over 300,000 food items, you can log your calorie intake and get eating advice based on your diet data. Upgrading to a paid plan gains you access to a support network in the Noom community and even the option to get a personal coach to help motivate you to stick with it.

How are you leveraging apps and tools to achieve your goals?