My list of personal tools, habits, and books that keep me happy and productive:

 
 
Recommendations Journal

Electronic Tools + Apps:

  • Evernote for taking notes, writing and editing posts, and clipping interesting things off the internet. I prefer it to many other note-taking or organizing apps. I pay for the premium version.
  • TeuxDeux for to-do lists. I previously used Todoist, but recently switched to TeuxDeux and I love it. It’s much more suitable for those who love making lots of different lists. I will gladly pay for this app.
  • Spotify for music. I also pay for the premium version of Spotify. I tried Apple Music and really did not enjoy it.
  • Passpack for storing passwords. I don’t use this as much as I should, but it has definitely come in handy.
  • Pinterest for storing pictures I’ve come across on Tumblr. I don’t really use Pinterest for food or business-related content. Sometimes I use it to put together an outfit.
  • Google Drive for storing pretty much everything. All my design files are here so I can access them at any computer if I need.

Making daily plans + writing things down:

  • Ink + Volt yearly planner for keeping me on track with yearly, monthly, and weekly goals. I carry this thing pretty much everywhere with me. When I’m finished with any given week, I use the previous pages for my sticky notes. I used to Bullet Journal, but got pretty tired of having to set up my plans on a weekly basis. Ink + Volt is much easier.
  • Amazon Basics notebooks for writing, sketching, and taking notes. I try to fill one of these notebooks each month. I usually transfer essays that I will turn into something bigger/better into Evernote at some point. When I'm reading a book, I outline it and take notes in this notebook. When I finish the book, I transfer these notes to Evernote to review concepts and make the content searchable. It's like my own version of a commonplace book, which you can read more about below! I carry this notebook with me everywhere.

I carry a pencil case with me pretty much all the time. Its contents include:

  • Washi tape
  • Glue stick
  • Several Prismacolor soft-core colored pencils
  • Some sharpie pens
  • Faber-Castell pen in black
  • Prismacolor fine line marker in black
  • Mechanical pencil
  • Lipstick
  • Earplugs

Websites/Essays/People of Note:

I will update with more once I think of them…

Podcasts:

  • Magic Lessons with Elizabeth Gilbert - ugh I love Liz Gilbert
  • 99% Invisible - a beautifully produced podcast about the design of everyday things that we usually don't think about
  • The Accidental Creative - how to build practical, everyday practices that help you stay prolific, brilliant and healthy in life and work
  • Invisibilia - a popular podcast from NPR
  • Making Oprah - I LOVE OPRAH AND THIS PODCAST!
  • If There’s Hell Below - for indie music
  • Creative Pep Talk - on making a living and making great art
  • The Chase Jarvis Live Show - interviews with creatives + entrepreneurs sponsored by CreativeLive.com
  • ChoiceLess - of you’re into hearing stories about abortion and abortion access
  • Design Matters with Debbie Millman - interviews with designers
  • Pivot Podcast with Jenny Blake - interviews and advice from entrepreneurs
  • The Positive Head Podcast - meditations and tips for healing past trauma and keeping a positive perspective

Design Stuff:

Adobe InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop. Because, yeah, they really are the best. If you're interested in learning to use these programs, I recommend Lynda.com, CreativeLive.com, and SkillShare.com.

Books:

  • You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero
  • Deep Work by Cal Newport
  • Magic Lessons by Elizabeth Gilbert
  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
  • Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
  • Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
  • Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg
  • Pivot by Jenny Blake