I frequently receive questions about some of the software and other resources I use to write, run my blog, record my podcast, and be productive with all of the activities I do. I decided that many of you might find it useful if I listed them and, in some cases, demonstrated them. I will add resources to this list as I find new ones and incorporate them into my workflow. If you have resources to suggest, please share them with me in the comments section at the end of this page.
Disclosure: Please note that several of the links below are affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase. Please understand that I have experience with all of these companies, and I regularly use these products. I recommend them because they are helpful and useful to me and because I feel that they could help many of you. I do not recommend any resources simply because I receive a small commission if you decide to use or purchase any of them. Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel that they can help you in your work or personal lives.
Feel free to click on the links below to filter the resources by specific categories. They are arranged in alphabetical order within each category.
- Social Media
- Sports Medicine
- Media and Speaking
AwayFind – This is a great tool to help you check email much less often. Instead of checking your inbox every few minutes to look for important emails, AwayFind notifies you by text message, voice message or iPhone app when a message from specific people email you. You can also set it up to notify you when subject lines containing certain words arrive.
Basecamp – Basecamp is my current project management software. Anyone working on a particular project can collaborate on it in real time, and all files, text documents, to-do lists, calendar events and discussion topics are kept in one place. You receive updates to discussion topics and notifications of tasks completed by others in your email. The calendar allows you see all of the to-dos and events from all of your projects in one place.
Dropbox – This has been one of the two “game changers” for me. Dropbox is a cloud-based storage system. You can access any files stored in your Dropbox from any of the computers on which you have Dropbox installed. You can also access any file through the Dropbox website or iPhone app. Maybe the most important feature, though, is the ability to share files and folders with others by giving them access.
eaHELP – I decided to try using a virtual assistant about 18 months ago when I realized that there was no way I could complete every project I wanted to do on my own. Through eaHELP, I have a wonderful executive assistant, Jen, who works with me ten hours per week. She posts the articles I write, makes travel arrangements, and helps in so many other ways. I cannot say enough about how helpful eaHELP has been to me. As I add to my list of projects and goals, I’m excited to increase the time she works with me. Read more.
Evernote – This is the other “game changer” for me. As I have tried to go paperless, Evernote has become my storage retrieval system for so much of my information. I clip articles I read to use at a later time by simply clicking a button on my browser. I forward emails to it for reference later. And I keep all kinds of notes, lists and other files in different notebooks I create. And with tags and the built-in OCR, all of the information is easily searchable.
Feedly – This is my replacement for my Google Reader. In many ways, I like it more than Google Reader. I have 30 or so websites and blogs I like to scan for interesting topics about sports medicine, health, medicine, productivity, technology and self improvement. You can mark articles to read later or collect them for other purposes, such as sharing them on your social networks.
Focus Time – This a time-management app for iOS devices. It serves as a timer to help you work without distractions. Set the timer’s intervals however you wish. I set mine to allow me to work 50 minutes and then take a 10-minute break. You can also set it to give you a certain number of short work intervals before a longer one. Plus it tracks your completed work cycles each days and presents your success in graph form.
Fujitsu S1300i ScanSnap Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Mobile Document Scanner – I first heard about this scanner in The 4-Hour Work Week, but many productivity gurus recommend it as well. It is tremendous for those of you who want to go paperless. Plus it really helps for quickly converting documents to PDF format for more permanent storage. I set mine up to scan documents directly into Evernote.
Highrise – Highrise is a contact management application from 37 Signals, who also created Basecamp. I not only can keep all of the contact information for someone, it can file every email to and from that person so you can retrieve information and discussions at a later time. It also has ability to set tasks, reminders and much more.
Instapaper – Instapaper, LLC “>Instapaper – This is resource for saving articles to read later. I clip articles that I want to save forever by clipping them in Evernote. On the other hand, if I come across a link to an article that I want to read while scanning my Twitter timeline, I hit “Read Later” to send it to my free Instapaper account. Then I can read those saved articles when I have some free time later.
MacBook Air – I have been a loyal Apple products user for over a decade now. I have no desire to switch. What I love about my MacBook Air is its portability. I can throw it into one of my Waterfield Designs bags at a moment’s notice and work from anywhere.
Moleskine notebooks – I write most of my blog posts, newspaper columns and other articles by hand. (Seriously, I think better that way!) As many different projects I have going on outside of my orthopaedic surgery work, I need to get articles written whenever and wherever I can. They are portable and durable, and I keep one of these notebooks with me almost anywhere I go.
PDFPenPro – This is my PDF reader of choice. I save articles and other documents to a folder in Dropbox, and those PDF documents automatically appear on my iPad. You can edit documents, add notes, or highlight text on an iPad and the changes appear when you open them on your computer. Plus you can fill out documents and send them electronically without ever having to print them. PDFpenPro 6 – iPad version
Text Expander – This is a simple to use application that allows you to create short snippets for pieces of text you type frequently. You can create a library of short text snippets for common words or names, email signatures and much more. TextExpander – iOS version
Waterfield Designs bags – These bags are great for my ability to work from anywhere. Each bag comes in different colors and materials and has versions for the size of laptop you use. I have three different ones for different purposes. I grab my MacBook Air, a Moleskine notebook, and a Dr. Grip pen, throw them into one of the bags, and I can work almost anywhere.
WorkFlowy – This is a list-making application that I use to outline articles and plan my podcast (see below). You can use it to brainstorm and fine tune articles for writing. For instance, you could make a list of key points on a topic and then move them around by dragging them to other parts of your list.
Bit.ly – This is my preferred url shortener for social media. I own the domain geier.md, and I use bit.ly to create a geier.md short link when I promote articles on Twitter. Plus it tracks the number of clicks those links get.
Hootsuite – This is a terrific tool for social media productivity. You can schedule updates on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ all on one dashboard. I mainly use Hootsuite to manage my Twitter feed. You can schedule tweets throughout the week and spread them out to avoid saturating your followers. Plus you can track lists of people in different fields, send and receive direct messages, and find any mentions of you.
Platform University – This is a membership I recommend for anyone who wants to build their online presence or grow it significantly. Michael and his team create Master Class sessions with experts in different fields. They critique one member’s platform each month and offer suggestions for improvement (those are very helpful!). They have a discussion forum for members and live calls monthly. It is well worth the monthly fee.
iStock – This is my source for images I use on my site other than ones I took or have been given permission from others to use. There is a small fee for each image. I have been pleased with the quality of the images and the tremendous selection of images.
MailChimp – This is the email service I now use for my mailing lists. It is easy to use. You can create templates to quickly send professional-appearing emails. You can segment list members into different groups to deliver different content to the groups. And its analytics are outstanding.
VaultPress – This is a reliable, easy to install database backup for WordPress. It is well worth the small monthly fee to avoid the loss of months or years worth of work and all of the comments your readers leave.
WordPress – This is the platform on which the vast majority of blogs are built, including mine. It is free to use. You can install a custom theme to improve the appearance and add cool features and functions. Despite many potential bloggers fear that it will be too hard to learn, adding blog posts is ridiculously easy to learn.
Adobe Audition – This is the editing software I use for my podcast. It is fairly expensive and takes a little while to learn (I recommend taking a class to learn it – see Podcast A to Z below). But you can add music, clip unwanted pauses, change audio levels and so much more.
Blubrry PowerPress – This is the WordPress plugin I use to allow people who come to my blog to listen to my podcasts (or highlights of the shows on regular blog posts) directly on the site. You can customize the player’s appearance. Listeners can hit play, advance the audio to different points or adjust volume levels without being confused by too many unnecessary features.
ID3 editor – This software allows me to add metadata to my audio files. I can add my name, name of the podcast, category, artwork and more so that the information appears correctly in iTunes and your music or podcast directories.
Jewel Beat – This is my source for royalty-free music I use between segments of my show. They have all different genres of music, and each track costs only 99 cents. Preview each piece of music and selects the ones you like. You then have the rights to use it forever.
Libsyn – Libsyn is one of the largest podcast hosting services, and it has been terrific for my podcast. For a small monthly fee, Libsyn will store the audio files in your account. Uploading files is very easy. Plus it offers fairly detailed statistics on your listeners.
Podcasting A to Z – I cannot recommend this course enough if you seriously want to start a podcast. My friend Cliff Ravenscraft has been recording podcasts for close to a decade, so he has learned all of the tips and tricks you need. You could spend hundreds of hours reading books and experimenting on your own. Or you could do what I did and take his four-week course. He takes you through every step. From purchasing equipment to deciding on a show topic to setting up your workflow to getting your show onto iTunes, he takes you through the entire process. Cliff is the best. Watch the video to find out more. And use the code “drdavid” at checkout and get $500 off the price of the course!
Rick Tarrant – Rick created the audio intro, outro and bumpers for my podcast. He can do voiceovers for any audio or video piece you want to create. You can write the text and suggest styles of music, and he will create amazing audio clips. Plus he is great to work with.
SoundByte – This is another easy-to-use program to play audio clips. Store different audio clips, such as your show intro or outro, and play them with by pressing a specific key or clicking the button. Sound Byte – iOS version
WorkFlowy – This is the list-making application I mention in the Productivity section. I use it mainly for my podcast. I haven’t found any other application as good as WorkFlowy for planning each episode of my podcast.
Get Published – I have started writing a book, so I was thrilled that author and former literary agent and CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers created this comprehensive resource for writing a book and getting it published. It has over 20 audio programs that guide you through deciding why you want to write a book to getting a literary agent to getting the book published. It is an wealth of key information all in one place.
Write a Winning Book Proposal – There are separate versions for fiction and nonfiction. I used the nonfiction one to create a book proposal for the book I recently started. I followed the blueprint to pitch the topic, present my intended audience, outline the chapters and present my marketing plans. My author friends were stunned by my proposal. There are many publications written about book proposals, but this is the best one I’ve seen.
The American Journal of Sports Medicine – This is the journal of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine. It is a tremendous resource for orthopaedic surgeons and other healthcare professionals who work in sports medicine. AOSSM members receive journal access as part of our dues, while nonmembers only have access to the abstracts unless they purchase a subscription. Disclosure: I am a principal reviewer for The American Journal of Sports Medicine.
Sports Health – A Multidisciplinary Approach – This is a terrific source of information for anyone working in sports medicine. It is a journal jointly sponsored by the professional societies for the athletic trainers, physical therapists, primary-care sports medicine physicians, and orthopaedic surgeons. Each issue features studies and review articles for each discipline. Disclosure: I am a reviewer for Sports Health.
Aviiq charging station – This is my remedy for all of the times I have forgotten my phone chargers when I travel. This compact case contains a charger that you plug into an outlet. It also has four cable holders to compactly store the cables. I leave the cables hooked up in mine. When I get to my destination, I plug the case to an outlet, attach up to four devices – phone, iPad, travel speaker – and I’m ready to charge whenever I’m in my room. It’s small and easy to set up.
Belkin surge protector – I don’t trust the outlets that come out of the lamps in hotel rooms or sit near the floor in airports. This surge protector has three outlets for multiple devices as well as two USB charging ports. It rotates to use in any orientation. And it is small enough to easily fit in any carry on.
GoLite suitcase – I absolutely love this carry on suitcase. My mom, who travels every week for her job, gave me my first one. Mine is a version that is now discontinued, but the new ones appear to be equally functional. They are small and light but hold everything you need for a three-day trip.
Video Traffic Academy – This online course offers you step-by-step instructions for creating a complete video strategy, including choosing your topics, finding your audience, creating and editing your videos, and optimizing your YouTube channel to maximize your traffic. It is unbelievably helpful.
ScreenFlow – This is the software I use for my screencasts. It is fairly easy to learn. I use it to make tutorials, like the ones for these resources.
Google Alerts – Even if you don’t talk to reporters for interviews, it is a good idea to know what people are saying and writing about you. You can create Google Alerts to deliver email messages whenever an article containing your name, business or any other keyword you want to track appears online. It seems to be missing more appearances recently, so using it in combination with Mention (below) might be a good idea.
Mention – This service works much like Google Alerts. It sends you emails when your name or other keyword appears. It also seems to pick up mentions on Twitter and Facebook better than Google Alerts. There are free and paid options.
Mr. Media Training – Brad Phillips is a former journalist who currently is president of Phillips Media Relations, a media and presentation training firm. His website and book are tremendous resources for anyone who regularly gives media interviews or public speeches. He offers tips on appearance, body language, developing your message, damage control and much more.
Amazon Prime – I was skeptical that I would order enough products through Amazon to make my annual subscription to Prime worthwhile. I don’t regret trying it at all. Now I order almost everything other than food through Amazon. With a couple of clicks, just about any product I could ever want appears in less than 48 hours with no extra fee for free shipping.
Apple TV – Yes I am an Apple fan to say the least. I include Apple TV, though, because it is my main source for entertainment and a key component of my workflow when I am at home. In addition to Netlix, Hulu Plus, HBO, Watch ESPN and other entertainment content, it also has my iTunes music, movies and TV shows. Plus I can listen to podcasts and watch Major League Baseball and NBA games through it. I love it.
Audible – I love audiobooks. I listen to them while I drive and travel. An Audible membership makes each book much cheaper than buying them individually at a store.
Bose® QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® Headphones – I don’t really like to work in public, but I often have no choice. Unfortunately coffee shops and bookstores are usually too noisy to keep me from being distracted. The Bose noise-cancelling headphones help dampen most of that background noise while I work.
Keurig coffeemaker and Jet Fuel coffee – I have tried to cut back on coffee in recent months, but sometimes I just need a cup to get me going. I love the Keurig coffeemaker, because I can make a single cup very quickly. Plus the coffee tastes great. And it is a personal taste, but I really like the Jet Fuel brand. Great name too!
MLB and NBA sports packages – What can I say? I love sports, especially professional baseball and basketball. I love being able to watch or listen to St. Louis Cardinals games or watch NBA games from anywhere. Having the ability to watch on my Apple TV is an added bonus.
Sleep Cycle – This was my sleep tracker of choice for years until I tried the Up24 bracelet (below). You place it under your pillow or sheet and it uses your phone’s accelerometer to monitor your sleep. Best of all, it will wake you up gently when it detects that you are in a light sleep within 30 minutes of your desired wake time.
Udemy – I have been taking Udemy courses for several months now, and I love it. This site has thousands of courses covering almost any topic you can imagine. They are video courses, but they usually have transcripts or syllabi as PDF documents. You can watch them on your computer, tablet, or phone. Some courses are free, while others charge a small fee. So far, they have all been worth it. I am currently taking one on game theory and another on media training. And I might be working on creating a Udemy course of my own…
UP24 by Jawbone – I just received this fitness tracking bracelet, so I might change my mind in a few months. So far, I love it. It tracks the number of steps I walk, monitors my sleep, wakes me up with a gentle alarm within 30 minutes of a desired awake time, allows me to enter food and drinks throughout the day, tracks progress of my sleep and fitness goals, and much more. Plus it syncs information through Bluetooth to your iOs device, so you don’t have to remember to do it manually.
White Noise – TMSOFT“>White Noise – This is a terrific white noise generator that can generate a huge number of different sounds to eliminate distractions while you work and to help you sleep. It might be too much information, but I prefer “Airplane Travel” to sleep and “Ocean Waves Crashing” to work.
Crush It! by Gary Vaynerchuk – This terrific book implores you to turn your passion into a business. His three simple rules – “Love your family. Work super hard. Live your passion.” Plus make sure to read chapter nine to learn the best marketing strategy ever…
The Dip by Seth Godin – This is my favorite book by Godin. It is for anyone who aspires to be “the best in the world” in whatever they choose to pursue. As he explains, “Quit the wrong stuff. Stick with the right stuff. Have the guts to do one or the other.” There is a ton of insight packed into a very short text. It’s worth every bit of the short time it takes to read it.
The Media Training Bible by Brad Phillips – This is a tremendous resource for anyone who speaks to the media. He teaches you how to create and deliver your message and guides you through the interview process. He explains how to answer tough questions, use ideal body language, dress for media success, and much more. His short tips can help you in public speaking as well.
Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World by Michael Hyatt – This is a must read for anyone who wants to develop a platform. He takes you through building a home base, generating traffic, building a community through social media, and much more. Platform is filled with tips that will help you, whether you are a beginner just starting to develop your website or if you have been active online for years.
Secrets of Dynamic Communicators by Ken Davis – This invaluable book comes from one of the creators of the SCORRE Conference (below). It takes you through the process of creating and delivering your message. As Ken writes, “Prepare with focus, deliver with clarity, speak with power.”
The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss – This book was a game changer for me, and I’m sure a huge percentage of the millions of people who have read it. I won’t get into all of the details, but Ferriss turns conventional wisdom about life and work on its head. If you haven’t read it, you should.
The 4-Hour Body by Tim Ferriss – This is another terrific book for people who seek easy but effective changes for losing weight, getting stronger, sleeping better and “becoming superhuman.” I still use the Slow-Carb Diet and much of the Occam’s Protocol approach to weightlifting years after I read it.
SCORRE Conference – This is an unbelievable public speaking conference presented by Dynamic Communicators International. The conference speakers teach you the nuts and bolts of creating and delivering exceptional talks. You won’t just sit and passively learn from the passionate speakers, though. You actually have to develop and give talks each night in your small group workshops. It sounds difficult and intimidating, and honestly it is, but it is absolutely worth it. I have taken what I learned at SCORRE and used it in meetings, articles I have written, interviews I have done on radio, and in talks I have given. I recommend SCORRE to anyone who wants to become a better communicator. Use the coupon code “DAVID” and receive $100 off the registration fee.
Launch Conference – This is another tremendous conference presented by Dynamic Communicators International. The conference aims to help you create a business around public speaking. To be fair, the information that the speakers share could help you with almost any business or goal using the framework they teach: Discover Your Assets. Design Your Products. Develop Your Market. Determine Your Value. Use the coupon code “DAVID” and receive $100 off the registration fee.
This Is Your Life – This is probably my favorite podcast. Dedicated to intentional leadership, Michael Hyatt offers helpful content for everyone. As he states, his goal is “to help you live with more passion, work with greater focus, and lead with extraordinary influence.”
Online Marketing Made Easy with Amy Porterfield – This is a enormously valuable podcast for anyone who wants to better use social media, email lists, and online marketing in their business. Amy delivers easy-to-implement tips and strategies in each short episode.
Podcast Answer Man – This is a terrific resource for current and aspiring podcasters and anyone interested in social media and marketing. It comes from Cliff Ravenscraft, the creator of Podcasting A to Z (see Podcasting above).
The Public Speaker – Quick and Dirty Tips – This is a very short podcast offering great tips for anyone who wants to be a better communicator in public speeches, interviews, meetings and more.
Grammar Girl – Quick and Dirty Tips – This is another very short podcast sharing helpful tips on language and writing. It is also surprisingly entertaining!
Freakonomics Radio – I was an economics major at Wake Forest, so I love this one. It features the authors of the Freakonomics books, Stephen J. Dubner and Steven D. Levitt. They explore topics ranging from crime rates to control of the internet to the best types of exercise. These podcasts explore “the hidden side of everything.”
Entrepreneur – Entrepreneur is devoted to business owners and leaders. It is a great resource of marketing and financial information, technology reviews, travel and more.
Inc. – This is a magazine dedicated to owners and executives of businesses to help them launch and run their businesses. I read it mainly for the technology and software information and advice from entrepreneurs who have both succeeded and failed in their endeavors.
Success Magazine – I love this magazine, and it is the only one I read cover to cover. It is designed to inspire and guide motivated people to lead truly successful lives. It’s tagline is “What Achievers Read.” Success gives me productivity tips from truly amazing achievers like Marissa Mayer, Richard Branson, Donald Trump, Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos. Plus it has health tips, leadership advice and so much more.
Jenny Blake and and the Make Sh*t Happen course – Jenny is and has been my coach and mentor for over two years. I cannot say enough about her. After five years at Google where she worked in training, coaching and career development, she created her own “location-independent small business.” I was a student in her first Make Sh*t Happen course, and it helped launch me on my current path. Take one of her courses. Hire her as a business or career coach. Thank me when you’re a star and having a blast!
Melissa Anzman – Melissa is a truly amazing person, and I am proud to call her a friend. Author of Stop Hating Your Job: How to Be Happy at Work without Quitting and How to Land a Job: Secrets from an HR Insiders, Melissa is a coachsultant over at Launch Yourself. Her business can and will help you find your ideal career, develop your brand, launch a business venture and elevate yourself to the next level. I’ve recommended her to many of my friends. Plus, she created this website!
Small Business Bodyguard – This is an invaluable resource for anyone with an online presence and business. It offers information on all sorts of legal issues ranging from business entities, intellectual property, copyrights and more. Best of all, you don’t need legal experience to understand it!