Apps that are Helping Me Survive Self-Isolation

hello loves, and welcome to this week’s post~
i know that i am posting on a monday, but this is due to the fact that Easter was yesterday, and my procrastination got the best of me. although i did not do anything special for Easter this year, i was chained to my desk doing assignments, lectures, and readings.

anyways, this week’s post is dedicated to all of the apps that have helped me get through this challenging time. outside of your typical social media outlets (such as instagram, twitter, and snapchat), there are other applications that have been keeping me preoccupied, and have prevented me from just laying in bed all day.

this blog post will be highlighting six apps which i utilize between all of my apple products:

although i spend most of my time on youtube, instagram, twitter, and snapchat, out of these four, i only highlighted youtube within this list. this is due to the fact that i watch youtube videos as my primary form of entertainment. i definitely watch more youtube videos than netflix shows, hulu live, and disney+.

the six applications that i have been such a huge help during self-isolation includes: genius scan, mapmyrun, podcasts, pinterest, youtube, and procreate.

  1. genius scan:
    for all of you high schoolers and college students, my boyfriend and i feel for you when it comes to the sudden switch to online learning. although it has been almost a year since i received my bachelor’s degree, i have made the executive decision to retake a couple of classes before this upcoming application season. with that being said — taking anatomy and physiology online is not exactly fun.

    i feel that learning is so much more of a hassle now, as we do not have two distinctive “settings.” we no longer have separate times reserved for learning and studying. now, we are basically combining the two together, which takes so much more effort to do. outside of my microsoft software and blackboard app, i have been utilizing genius scan to submit my assignments.

    this is a scanning app for those who do not have a scanner, or would like a more convenient way to scan in your assignments. this app allows you to take pictures of your documents and crop it to size. the app will automatically adjust the tilt and straighten out the page for you. if the application can detect your page perfectly, it will apply the black and white filter to mimic the appearance of the document being scanned into the computer. however, if it is not applied automatically, you have the ability to manually apply this filter. furthermore, this app does not flood your photo gallery with images of your assignments, and i find this to be optimal.

    genius scan also allows you to group your pages together; so, when you are ready to export the assignment to your computer, it will automatically organize the pages into a PDF file. this will help keep your submitted work organized, and make it easier for your professor to view your work. this feature will also save you a ton of time when it comes to uploading your assignment on time.
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  2. mapmyrun:
    my boyfriend and i are pretty active people, and we enjoy going to the gym. however, we obviously do not have access to one right now. as an alternative, we have picked up running outside on the trail. we actually started outdoor running a few weeks before the official stay-in-place order was issued, but it still feels really nice to be able to get out of the house a couple times a week and go on a run.

    mapmyrun is an all-in-one app that is owned by underarmour. this application has the ability to track your time, distance, pace, and calories burned. there is even a feature to pause your recording for those much needed breaks to catch your breath, or to get a sip of water. this application also tracks your route, and saves your run history so you can compare your results to one other. when we go running, my boyfriend and i are currently achieving a little more than a 5k (about 3.1 miles).

    outdoor running is a sport where you are trying to improve your personal best, and i find it to be extremely therapeutic. additionally, running is an amazing whole body exercise that challenges and improves your stamina. if you are looking for a way to quickly burn stubborn fat, cardio is one of the best ways to trim some inches.
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  3. podcasts:
    i personally enjoy reading, however, my tolerance for this stimulating activity has significantly decreased throughout the years. now it is challenging for me to stay awake when i try to read for fun. audiobooks are a great alternative for reading, however, you are required to repurchase the book that you probably already have. so, i really like to listen to podcasts when i want to educate myself in an entertaining way. podcasts are also a great way to escape from the current reality that we are living in, and can help convey a new perspective or mindset, or it can help give insight into a different lifestyle.

    the podcasts app is a free standard app that comes with any apple product, and it includes many free podcast series that are easily accessible. my personal favorites include true crime podcasts such as: “Crime Junkies“, “The Root of Evil: The True Story of the Hodel Family and the Black Dahlia“, and “Dr. Death“. i know this topic is not everyone’s cup of tea, but it is my guilty pleasure.

    the most recent podcast that i am obsessed with is about improving your level of wellness and happiness. this podcast is titled “The Happiness Lab with Dr. Laurie Santos.” this podcast is hosted by a psychology professor at Yale, and it is absolutely phenomenal and truly inspiring. not only does she give you tips and tricks to improve your own happiness, she also educates you on the research, and uses relatable stories and interviews to help you connect with the advice that she provides. i highly recommend this podcast, and i truly think it will change your mindset for the better and towards the more positive side of things.
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  4. pinterest:
    i am happy to announce that we are moving to a different apartment complex in the next couple of months! this transition is very exciting, and gives way to a lot of distractions outside of school and work. it is also a very stressful process, as we need to take care of a lot of transfers between the bills. i mean, what a time to be an adult!

    as we are preparing to move into a new space, i am growing more excited to decorate our new home~

    pinterest has always been an application that i have used when i need a sudden burst of inspiration. i have boards designated for recipes, desserts, hairstyles, nail art, and of course home decor! this creative app has been helping me visualize what i want for our new home, and it has also been helpful in keeping my mind distracted from the realization that we are stuck inside for another month.

    if you have never used pinterest, i highly recommend that you go and explore the app. even if you are not moving any time soon, or don’t have a special occasion, such as wedding, to plan for — you can always envision the perfect home or the perfect wedding without limitations. if you have not logged into the app in a while, then i welcome you to go through your old vision boards and modify them to what you are currently interested in!
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  5. youtube:
    this app is the biggest distraction there is, and i am so grateful that we have this platform to rely on. like i mentioned before, i probably spend more hours in a week watching youtube videos than any other streaming service or social media outlet. i believe that this is due to the fact that i am engaged in many topics such as: art, journaling, crafting, fashion, and lifestyle. i also have my favorite go to channels for each topic of interest. recently, i have been keeping up to date with a lot of lifestyle creatives who also have separate vlog channels. it is really interesting to see how these individuals are holding up during this weird time period in our lives. additionally, i appreciate that they are trying to create more content to keep us company while we are all stuck indoors.

    i am sure that i can go on for forever about this platform, and go into detail about who my favorites are, and who inspires me the most, but i think i will save that for another post! if you are not as involved with youtube as i am, i definitely encourage you to find a channel that resonates with you and to explore their content. it doesn’t have to be a lifestyle channel, or a vlog channel, or a beauty channel, etc. since this platform has grown so much in the past couple of years, i am sure that you are bound to find something or someone to entertain or distract you.
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  6. procreate:
    the last application on this list would be procreate. although it is at the bottom of this list, it is by far one of my favorite apps right now! when i purchased my iPad air, i automatically wanted to get the apple pencil so that i may utilize this app. if my memory serves me correctly, i purchased this app the same day that i unboxed my iPad air!

    i have not used this app to its fullest potential, but it’s not because the application is bad or faulty. it is simply because i have not had the time to sit and really illustrate or doodle with it. additionally, i find drawing to be one of the most daunting hobbies out there. i know that many artists say to just go for it, but i am a very meticulous person, and a perfectionist. therefore, i find it hard to pick up a pen or pencil and just start going for it. but, i am starting to get more comfortable with the idea of a drawing not being perfect, or even close to perfect. sometimes, a sketch should just stay a sketch.

    recently, you may have noticed a big change on my My Authentic Nature. if you did not read my previous post, i purchased my domain a few weeks ago. along with my official domain, i vowed to take my blog more seriously and decided to make my own illustrations and photos for all of my posts. if you take a look, all of the illustrations for this post and the last were all hand drawn by me, and it is all thanks to procreate!

    i believe that procreate is an incredible beginners app for those who find photoshop to be intimidating. it utilizes layers, and has an array of brushes and colors for you to use. you can also purchase and download brushes from other artists, if you would like to hone in on your artistic style. you are required to purchase procreate, but it is super affordable! at only $9.99 to download, you can create pieces that look completely digital, or you can take a more traditional route. procreate allows you to import photos and files, so you can potentially render a sketch, or colorize and finalize a piece with the app. regardless, i think this is one of the better applications to invest in!

i am aware that these six apps are not considered new in the industry, but they all have mentally and physically helped me throughout this period of self-isolation. although i am lucky to be able to work right now, my hours have been significantly reduced, and i am primarily stuck at home like everyone else. if i did not utilize these apps, like i have been, i truly believe i would be spending my days just laying in bed and napping all the time.

although getting additional sleep is a huge blessing, if i let it consume me, i will just become extremely lethargic all the time. then, i won’t have the energy to complete all of my daily tasks. these apps have also helped me take breaks during my extended self-learning and studying sessions.

regardless of if you will explore these apps, or not, i highly encourage that you try and find ways to keep your mind and body stimulated during this time of self-isolation. human beings are extremely social animals, and due to the lack of physical contact and daily, in-person, conversations, it can be detrimental to our physical and mental health.

with that, i think i will wrap up this post! i did not realize how long this post was going to be, but i hope you enjoyed it ❤︎

remember that this time will pass, and all things will return as they should.
be mindful of your actions; remember to wash your hands frequently, if you are succumbed to going outside; and stay safe.

i’ll talk to you soon~
with love, joslyn

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