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In some regards, a smartphone has become an extension of our bodies.

For many, especially the youth, it’s rare to see a phone out of their hands, so much so that you wonder if it is actually permanently stuck there.

Despite how much we all use our phones, there’s absolutely no denying how useful they are every day, especially in a business sense.

Although we all live amongst a tech war between iOS and Android, the fact is that it doesn’t really matter which side you pick – basically every smartphone manufactured today has many functions that make our lives arguably better, so long as you know where to draw the line.

Is a phone simply a tool for making calls and texts?

Absolutely not.

There is far more to this little gadget than perhaps you ever knew possible. Here are four ways your digital companion can help enhance your life.

 

Photography

Mobile Photography

Is there more to life than taking pictures of your food or your outfit? We’d like to believe there is. We’re talking about actual photography, in which you become an artist and attempt to take the most beautiful pictures you’re capable of doing.

Smartphones can easily take stunning photos, and if you really stop and look about you, you’ll see scenarios which could make great images.

It doesn’t always have to be gorgeous beaches or misty forests, as it could be simple things like a sunset taken from the highest building in your city, people having a great time at a street festival, or an interesting angle of a popular spot, such as when photographed in a puddle, for example.

When you think about photos as art, you’ll see the world differently, as the convenience of always having your phone in your pocket is such a great way to capture things that are often fleeting.

Apps like Instagram, Layout, VSCO, and Darkroom can really take your images to the next level when it comes to editing.

 

Productivity & planning

Whilst it’s fair to say that many of us still prefer the old-school method of writing important things down in a diary or notebook, a smartphone does provide a wide variety of uses that go beyond the humble pen and paper.

For one, other than perhaps Skyping all your contacts at once or sending a group email, it’s hard to immediately know everyone’s schedule when planning a meetup, whether it’s dinner and drinks or a business meeting.

Doodle is an app which makes that possible, as you’ll provide different dates and times as options and eventually (hopefully) you’ll find one where everyone can attend.

Google Calendar and Evernote are also great apps which help you stay on top of professional and personal matters in an easy-to-read manner.

Furthermore, the Office 365 package, which can be searched for on 1&1, is something useful for those who like to work on their phone when in transit, as the premium versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint are often vital for professionals who require the software to function at its highest level.

 

Brain training & learning

Women Holding Space Gray Iphone X and Black Pen

Who says that smartphones only have loud, colorful games like Candy Crush and Fruit Ninja? There are so many apps that can actually help us to become less stressed and learn more.

Impossible?

Well, if you haven’t yet downloaded apps like Headspace, Elevate, or Duolingo, then you’re missing out. Headspace is fantastic for when we need some time to unwind, as the guided meditation app has many different tracks for dealing with stress, anxiety, or nerves.

Elevate helps us retain and improve our math, English, and problem solving techniques with a variety of fun games. Lastly, for anyone wanting to learn a language without attending a class, Duolingo has options for German, Spanish, French, Italian, and many more.

 

Increasing social circles

Of course, digital naysayers suggest that smartphones are making us less connected to each other in the real world, but this isn’t necessarily true.

The amount of apps which can bring people together is quite staggering, and we’re not just talking about popular dating apps like Tinder and Bumble. Couchsurfing and Meetup.com both have great apps which will have weekly get-togethers in your area.

If you’re new to a place or simply feel like you want to expand your social circles, apps like these can help you get to know new people, particularly those interested in the same things as you, whether that be heavy metal music, basketball, video games, or yoga.

Don’t think of your phone as a useless distraction to the real world, think of it as a tool to help you improve your life and broaden your horizons.

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Posted by Igor Ovsyannykov

I'm a digital nomad and entrepreneur bouncing around South East Asia. When I'm not working here, I'm out taking photos. Follow me on Instagram: @igorovsyannykov

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