15 Fantastic Apps to Track & Manage Your Goals

It’s been just over a month since the year started and I bet more than half of your new year resolutions have already taken a back seat. This happens every year for me, but this time over I’ve decided to use the web to help bring about some change for good.

Here’s a look at 15 fantastic web apps to use for setting, tracking and ultimately achieving those goals.

Generic Goal Management

Let’s start with a few generic goal tracking apps that are built to help you manage your goals and achieve them.

43things

43things

43 Things

43Things takes a very straightforward approach to goals tracking, adding a social component to help you crowdsource motivation and support in achieving your goals. You list your goals, set how often you want to be reminded of it and share them with your friends on social networks.

What works in favor of the site is the incredible community support it enjoys. For every goal you add, 43things will tell you many other people have the same goal on their list and will provide a snapshot of notes and comments from them. As you add notes and milestones for each goal, others will comment and provide motivation to help you take it forward. Simple but powerful.

  • Price: Free
  • Mobile Support: iOS
Joe's Goals

Joe's Goals

Joe’s Goals

You can call Joe’s Goals the granddaddy of all goal tracking web apps. It was the first one of its kind when I saw it a few years ago. You add your goals, and enter the status for each one at set intervals. The barebones reporting mechanism will tell you how long the current chain for each goal is, making it the motivation to carry on.

The monster size ads on the app can get distracting though, especially since they take up a big chunk of the screen right the top, but you can get rid of them by getting a pro account for $12 per year.

  • Price: Free or Pro: $12 per year
  • Mobile Support: None
42goals

42goals

42Goals

42goals takes the joe’s goals formula and takes it a few steps further. Don’t be fooled by the very similar layout of the two apps. 42goals packs in some very good punches — a seemingly limitless supply of icons to customize your tracking board, clever and customizable templates for one-click goal setting, and a bunch of ways to visually analyze your progress on each goal.

For generic goals tracking and analysis, things don’t get any better than this. The free version has pretty much everything I’ve needed so far, but if you need more advanced goal types, a stopwatch (or timer, depending on how you use it), categorization and e-mail support, the premium version comes in at $5 per month.

  • Price: Free or Premium: $5 per month
  • Mobile Support: Mobile web version
GoalsOnTrack

GoalsOnTrack

GoalsOnTrack

GoalsOnTrack bills itself as a goals management and personal achievement software. With it, you can set goals, list tasks associated with completing these goals, and track your progress on a calendar. Unlike most other apps in this list, GoalsOnTrack provides a very detailed form to help you set SMART goals; goals that are manageable and achievable.

You can attach motivational images to each goal and the app will show you these images in a slideshow mode, helping you subconciously think of ways to achieve your goals. Then, you add tasks for goals, set deadlines, and strike them off as you complete each task. This information is then used to show progress for each goal.

The only real downside to the app, apart from the strictly rudimentary visual design, is that there is no free version. You need to pay $68 to get access to the app for one year, although they do promise a 60-day window for a full refund.

  • Price: $68 per year, 60-day money back
  • Mobile Support: Unknown
Lifetick

Lifetick

Lifetick

Lifetick is very much like GoalsOnTrack, in many ways, but with a major emphasis on core values and a beautiful UI. You start by identifying your core values — areas that define who you are — to help you define ‘why’ a goal is important to you. That’s followed by goals associated with each core value, tasks for completing each goal, complete with deadlines, progress bars and a calendar.

Everything is presented in a colorful and very usable interface, including a customizable status dashboard. One advantage or disadvantage of lifetick, depending on how to you choose to see it, is that is doesn’t shy away from bombarding you with e-mails that nag you to complete tasks on your list.

  • Price: Free or $20 per year
  • Mobile Support: iOS, Android & Palm web app

Health

Let’s get a bit specific, now. When it comes to new year resolutions, at least every other person has something health-related on there. Whether you are looking to lose weight (or gain some), eat better or simply start exercising regularly, these apps will help you set goals, track them and even provide motivation in their own ways.

Health Month

Health Month

Health Month

Health Month turns the process of leading a healthy lifestyle into a game, letting you compete against thousands of users while working on your goals. You earn points for making progress, and lose points for not sticking to tasks. The fact that your progress is out there for others to see makes for a good motivator.

What sets this site apart is its focus on enabling change in a month. You set your list of things you want to do in a month, and start tracking them from the 1st if that month on a daily basis. Status dashboards, pretty visuals, reminders, you get the whole gamut with the added satisfaction of scoring better every day.

  • Price: Free
  • Mobile Support: None
dailymile

dailymile

Dailymile

If your New Year resolutions include running, walking or any cardio activities, this is the app to go to. As you complete your workouts, simply log them in using their web or mobile clients. The site will keep track of all the activity and summarize it into a bunch of beautiful looking graphs that have to be seen to be believed. It also adds a social angle to the proceedings by publishing your achievements and integrating with Twitter and Facebook. There’s also support for integration with Nike+ or some Android apps.

  • Price: Free
  • Mobile Support: Garmin, Nike+, iOS & Android

Productivity

Who doesn’t want to procrastinate less and move towards the 4-hour work week? Most people struggle with productivity though, especially with the barrage of social media and news we face these days. Let’s look at some apps that can help you get more out of your time. It’s a mixed bag of tools that take extremely different approaches to do this, though. Pick the one that works for you.

Remember The Milk

Remember The Milk

Remember The Milk

For most people, simply going through their list of tasks is good enough productivity. And that can very much be true, provided one follows the discipline of logging all tasks, categorizing them appropriately and religiously following up on finishing the lists.

For heavy-duty task-list-based-productivity, few web apps can beat Remember The Milk in its perfect mix of power, flexibility and ease-of-use. A full keyboard-optimized interface, more task level metadata that most of us need, categories, smart search based categories, and presence on virtually every mobile platform more than justify the attention and rave reviews RTM gets.

Note though, that you need to get the $25 a year Pro subscription to get full access to the mobile apps.

  • Price: Free or Pro: $25 per year
  • Mobile Support: iOS, Android, Blackberry & Windows Mobile
slife

slife

Slife

Although it started as a Mac app, Slife has grown into a platform with a web app and a Windows client as well. The client quietly sits in the background logging what apps, documents and websites you visit through the day. It then provides a visual overview of where you spend your time and how. You can also manually log activities — work, meetings and phone calls — and add notes.

  • Price: Free or $5-10 per month
  • Mobile Support: None
RescueTime

RescueTime

RescueTime

Rescuetime is a web based time management and analytics app. It integrates closely with your browsers and desktop apps, capturing every detail of what you do through the day, using smart analysis techniques to evaluate how productive you have been. You can assign sites and documents to projects to improve the analytics.

Although this sounds very much like what Slife does, Rescuetime goes a step further by providing you with tools to help block distractions and focus on productive tasks to get things done. They also offer a provide a team plan that can be used for group productivity analysis and time management.

  • Price: Free or $6-9 per month
  • Mobile Support: None

Finances

With the economy taking its own sweet time to get back on track, spending wisely is on pretty much everyone’s list these days. The problem is, you can’t really do that unless you have a way to track your current spending habits. Here are a few apps that will let you track where your money goes, and help manage it better.

Mint.com

Mint.com

Mint

The phenomenon that Mint.com is, it needs no introduction, but here goes. In their own words – Mint brings all your financial accounts together online, automatically categorizes your transactions, lets you set budgets & helps you achieve your savings goals. The app gives you everything you need to keep track of your income and expenses, and helps make informed choices on how you spend money.

For a free app, it doesn’t get any better than this, the only catch being that it’s not available for people outside the US and Canada.

  • Price: Free
  • Mobile Support: iOS or Android
pearbudget

pearbudget

PearBudget

If the complexity that comes with Mint.com’s comprehensive set of features is too much for you, or if you’re wary of handing over access to your financial accounts to a third party, or simply if you live outside the two countries that Mint works in, PearBudget might just be the thing for you.

What started as a simple excel sheet for budgeting and tracking income and expenses, is now an online app that works pretty much the same way. You start by dividing your income into various categories to set up a budget, enter expenses as they occur and review how you are doing.

  • Price: 30-day trial, $4.95 per month after
  • Mobile Support: Mobile web app

Personal Information Visualization

Finally, a couple of tools to help track and visualize pretty much anything you can think of. Want to keep tabs on how much coffee you have everyday, track your sleeping patterns, or how long you work on an average? Try these freeform information visualization apps. They might take some getting used to, but once you’ve figured things out and added some data, it can get really addictive!

daytum

daytum

Daytum

Daytum helps you collect, categorize and communicate your everyday data. You’re not limited by what kind of data you want to enter, as long as there is something measurable about it. Daytum will do its best to figure out the most appropriate visualization for it, but you can tweak it till you are happy with the way the information is displayed.

You can have something as simple as big bold numbers in a panel, to complex bar, pie or area charts. What you do with it is up to your imagination. And with a spanking new iOS app, Daytum just got a whole lot accessible for those fine bits of info you always wanted to track, but didn’t know where or how to.

  • Price: Free or $4 per month
  • Mobile Support: iOS
your.flowingdata

your.flowingdata

Your FlowingData

Flowingdata has been Nathan Yau’s portal for showcasing the best of information visualization for a good few years now, and your.flowingdata takes it one step forward by letting readers chip in and create their own visualizations.

Things work similar to how they do in Daytum with one major difference. Flowingdata uses a tool most of us already use — Twitter — as a data entry medium. You just send a dm to @yfd and it will get added to your datastream in the appropriate categories and reflect on your dashboard. You also get a slightly different set of visualizations from what Daytum offers.

  • Price: Free
  • Mobile Support: None
mycrocosm

mycrocosm

mycrocosm

Let me start off by highlighting that this is a MIT Media Lab product, as you can probably already tell from the URL. It was built as an alternative to the text-based microblogging solutions out there with a focus on visualization and statistical analysis.

Again, the concept is similar to the last two apps — publish bits and pieces of information from your daily life, and use your creativity (and some clever interpretation on the app’s part) to build charts and graphs to show change over time.

  • Price: Free
  • Mobile Support: None

Final thoughts

That of course, is just our list of ways to track and manage new year resolutions. Got more that work for you? Sound them off in the comments.


  • Godspeed

    I wish there was an app that had the features of joe’s goals and 42 goals. I like the points reward system in joe’s goals for some goals, while other goals (such as the time spent) are easier to track on 42goals.

  • Dak Splunder

    Resolution #1:
    Learn the difference between “lose” and “loose.”

  • someone

    what about wunderlist?

  • http://sheatsb.com sheatsb

    Actually, 43 Things (note the space) does have an iOS app – http://www.43things.com/resolutions/iphone

    • http://Web.AppStorm.net Jarel Remick

      Thanks, I’ve updated the post. It’s unfortunate that their website doesn’t easily indicate mobile access.

  • joe d

    You forgot to mention habitmix

  • Dan

    For managing your goals you can use this web-based application:

    http://www.Gtdagenda.com

    You can use it to manage your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, schedules and a calendar.
    Syncs with Evernote, and also comes with mobile-web, Android and iPhone apps.

  • http://ColtonProvias.com Colton Provias

    Another interesting web-based app is http://chains.cc. Each day you complete something, you mark it off. The goal then becomes less about completing that item daily and more about making sure you don’t break the chain.

  • http://Bigchangeapp.com Scott

    A new entrant in the market is Big Change. It is set up for 8 standard goals and one user defined custom goal. Use it with Facebook and Twitter to involve your network for commitment and support.

  • Pingback: Give the gift of goal-setting: Part 1 | computerexplorersblog.com

  • http://www.goalsontrack.com Harry Che

    GoalsOnTrack has an iPhone app just published recently, which is free with the web based version.

  • Dan

    I used Chains.cc for a while and loved it. They did not come out with an iphone app this year so I switched to the free iRewardChart iphone app and then quickly to the paid iRewardChart app which works very well for me. It is targeted at tracking behavior of children, but I think I need it more than them. It has rewards features as well and can be customized. You can use if for yourself, kids, or instead of kids make a work & personal profile each with their own goals. The icon is cheesy, but hey, it works!

  • habitr

    Another very good app for goals tracking and habit tracking is http://www.advirtus.com

  • Pingback: Shlepping along… « The Burned Hand

  • Pingback: 8 Must Do’s This Summer to Reinvorgate Yourself

  • Pingback: 2 Steps Forward, 1 Step Back | Sea2Summit7

  • http://natlovestoponder.wordpress.com natlovestoponder

    thank you for this. I feel like i am getting back on track.

  • Pingback: Learner Agency, Technology, and Emotional Intelligence « User Generated Education

  • Marina

    I’s definitely recommend PrioTime to add to the list: http://priotime.com/
    Great goals check out, timeline and visualization of achievements!

  • Jan Lagast

    if you want to track the time you worked on projects … try http://www.funkytime.com. It’s a free web application specifically built for knowledge workers like architects, designers, engineers, web builders, IT experts, consultants, etc that have more than one project at stake each day.

theatre-aglow
theatre-aglow
theatre-aglow
theatre-aglow