Caves, Tomatoes, and Trees: Productivity Tools that Work

Stephanie Cansian
2 min readNov 15, 2021
A leaf set in a glass of water to the left of macbook pro. The leaf looks like it trying to shelter the screen.
Photo by Sarah Dorweiler on Unsplash

I love my work, but the world can be very distracting. So here are three tools I love to use to help me stay on task, work more efficiently on what matters, and track my progress towards my goals.

  1. The Productivity Planner by Intelligent Change. This planner uses the Pomodoro Method, along with the Eat The Frog methodology. These two techniques help you prioritize your most important tasks and track how long each one takes you. If you already have a planner you love, they also sell sheets that you can tear out and take with you. Whichever option you choose, something about writing things down makes them more real.
  2. is for those of us who like working alone together (IYKYK). Working from home as a solo entrepreneur can be incredibly isolating. Caveday is a very sophisticated and moderated Zoom session for people to work on their tasks (muted, of course) while on camera with other people. There’s an initial ice breaker session, and the moderator makes sure everyone takes breaks together. One Three Hour Drop-In session is $20, or you can become a member for $35/month.
  3. Forest App is an app that makes your phone practically unusable for a set duration. You plant a “tree” in your “forest” and set the timer. The more you focus (don’t look at your phone), the more your tree grows. If you quit the app before the timer runs out, the tree “dies.” The trees themselves are lovely, but the key to this app is the real-world effect of staying focused: the more trees you plant, the more coins you earn. When you reach a sufficient amount of coins, you can spend them to plant one tree in the real world thanks to Forest’s partner, Trees for the Future. You can create a team to grow a forest together or go solo. Either way, thanks to Forrest, over 1.6 million trees have been planted. The app is entirely free to use, but you can earn triple coins on your focus time for $1.99 every three weeks non-recurring.

Disclaimer: There are no affiliate links or sponsorships in this article. I use all three of these, and I hope you try them out!



Stephanie Cansian

Former employee of Apple, Starbucks, and Amazon, who vowed never to be an employee again. Copywriter, coordinator, and proven catalyst for 10X change.