This far into the year, most of us have given up our New Year’s Resolutions and are just trying to make it through the week. We’re not thinking in terms of new beginnings anymore, but maybe we should be. It’s just that it's a lot harder to start fresh when we’re this close to the middle.
If you're finding it difficult to keep your momentum up and need some help, Counter app Last Time gives you a new beginning each time you check in. Keeping track of how long it’s been since you last did a thing, and that thing can be anything, Last Time counts your days and weeks. What it won’t do is tell you how many times you’ve reached your goal or missed your goal. It’s a fresh start everyday.
The Last Time I Did This…
You’ll need to create an event task in Last Time to get started. Tap the plus sign in the left pane to get the event creation window. Type in a name for your event, and choose an icon to represent it. The icon will also serve as a category, so while there’s roughly a bazillion icons, you might want to scale back your icon usage if you plan to really use the categories. If you want your event to begin before today, for instance if you started working out last week, the calendar and clock icons will let you adjust the start date. When everything is set, tap Done.
To check in with an event, tap the icon next to the event. As an example, I’m using a heart to represent the event “Met a New Dog,” because I like dogs a lot, so I’ll tap the heart to next to the dog event every time I meet a new dog. When I check in, I have the option of adding a note, which is great if I met a fancy dog or something, or just checking the event off like normal if the dog wasn’t anything to write home about. When I finished my check in, my counter will reset to zero, letting me know I met a dog really recently.
What if I met that dog two days ago but forgot or didn’t have the chance to check in with Last Time? That’s no problem. If I’m adding a note, I can select the calendar and clock icons to backdate my dog meeting. If I’m not adding a note, I’ll still check off the event like normal, but then I’ll select the event to look at its history. Once in the event history, I can select my check in and edit its date. Last Time will also allow you to add a note to a past event if you find you now have something to say.
Sort It Out
Over in the left sidebar, you can sort your events by how long it’s been since your last check in. Of course you can look at all of your events, but if you’ve just got bunches and bunches, you can look at only the events you’ve checked into over the last few weeks. This sorting feature also lets you pull out just the events that have been neglected over the last few months or even years, so you can get back on track if you like.
If you’re starting a healthy cooking kick or working out or any number of activities that fall into the same category, you can give all of those the same icon when creating an event. That way if you tap the little barbell, you can see all of your healthy activities at a glance. Last Time is great for just counting any fun things you do, but if you want to organize a personal improvement project, like learning a new hobby or getting healthy, it’s great to be able to sort those events out with the categories.
Find Your Events
There are a lot of categories in Last Time, though. It can be a lot to sort through, and you may forget whether you chose the baseball bat or the shoe for your exercise category. So it’s nice that in the settings you can turn your categories on and off. Find you only need eight categories? Turn everything else off, and then turn them back on again if you do end up wanting them again after all.
In the settings, you can backup to Dropbox, in case you ever lose the data on your iPad. Last Time will also change how it counts the days and how time passes. If you’re checking off your events several times a day, you can even get Last Time to display how many seconds have passed since the last check in. And if you’re worried about someone seeing all your events, especially if you have anything potentially embarrassing in there, Last Time will set up a passcode for you.
I really like the lack of counting in Last Time. Any time I check in, even if I’ve neglected my work out or whatever else for the last week, I’m still on top with one check in. While that may make any changes seem superficial, it also drops the barriers to change, too. I don’t want to have to look at a calendar that shows me how many days I’ve missed working out or cooking healthy meals or spending time on my hobby or whatever else it is I want to do.
Sure, I can find all that in the event history and look at how many days or weeks it’s been since a check in, but I don’t have to see that if I don’t want to. Everyday is a new day, and as soon as I check in, whether it’s the first time or the fiftieth, I’m back on track as far as Last Time is concerned.