Turning inner space into outer space

October 8, 2020

Yes, Virginia, there is a good free habit-tracking app

Steady Habit interface

I had no idea habit-tracking was such a fad. The App Store currently features 13 of them, all with bells and whistles out the yin-yang.

As you might expect, though, all but two them involve in-app purchases, which no doubt involve some kind of outrageous subscription.

One exception costs a straight-up $6.99, and has many excellent reviews. It’s called Streaks if you want to check it out.

I downloaded the only free one, called Steady Habit. It really does have no strings attached — they don’t even ask for your email. On the other hand it’s quite straightforward. You list the habits you want, and check them off as you do them.

There are a bunch of templates for habits you may not have thought of. Mine are all once a day, but you can also choose certain days of the week.

Steady Habit also has notifications, which can be a nice touch if you need reminding.

The thing about the paper sheet I’m using is that it doesn’t need to send a reminder. It sits in front of me on my desk every day, making it almost impossible to forget.

The apps with in-app purchases have many amazing features, usually involving variations on charts and forms of encouragement. But the thought of spending a lot of time in an app to check my habits seems a little weird, especially when one of my goals is to spend less time on my phone.

update I occurred to me a couple of days later that you could use the iPhone’s built-in Reminders app as a habit-tracker. The downside is that the habits might get mixed in with other reminders, which would not be ideal.