FOR THE PRODUCTIVITY-OBSESSED, a more joyful and efficient life starts with good habits. Our sensible routines prepare us for success: plan your day, wash your face, early to bed, early to rise, etc. If you have an iPhone and you’ve updated to iOS 12, you can streamline those routines on your phone across apps, and maybe even create new habits.
Shortcuts (née Workflow) was introduced to iPhones and iPads in this fall’s software update. The feature allows you to create an ordered series of steps, called “actions,” and consolidate them into a single shortcut. For instance, you can use Shortcuts to create a bedtime routine shortcut that turns on Do Not Disturb, sets a timer for you to brush your teeth, then plays the latest episode of the New Yorker fiction podcast for easy listening as you wind down. The shortcut will set off all of these actions for you, in order, so you don’t have to switch tediously between apps. You can choose to prompt the shortcut with custom Siri command, like “Hey Siri, get me ready for bed.”