Picture this: you’re sitting at the computer, all ready to get some work done. Suddenly, your mind wanders and before long you find yourself reading the news, watching YouTube videos, or engaging in other internet-aided procrastination. Does this happen to you? If it does, here is a list of programs that might help fight it.
Firefox Productivity Plugin
- LeechBlock: Allows you to block websites within a fixed time period, such as setting it to block Facebook and Twitter between the hours of 12 pm – 3 pm.
Chrome Productivity Plugins
- StayFocusd: Allows you to allot certain amounts of time to specific websites each day. After you have used up your time, you will be blocked from visiting those websites for the remainder of the day. Optional security features make the plugin difficult to disable so that you won’t be tempted to regain access to blocked websites.
- ChromeNanny: Combining the features of LeechBlock and StayFocusd, this handy plugin allows you to block websites for fixed periods of time, or allot a certain amount of time each day to a website.
Free Productivity Software
- Cold Turkey — Windows Only – Allows you to block websites for a fixed period of time. Cold Turkey is intentionally difficult to circumvent, so you won’t be tempted into shutting off the program. The paid version also includes a program-blocking feature.
- SelfControl — Mac Support Only – Blocks email servers and websites for fixed periods of time.
Paid Productivity Software (Free Trials Available)
- Freedom — $10; free trial available. Windows and Mac support — Completely blocks access to the internet for fixed periods of time.
- Anti-Social — $15.00, free trial available. Mac support only – Blocks access to social media websites for fixed periods of time.
If there are any other internet-limiting productivity tools that I forgot, then please let me know in the comments.
(Image courtesy of Zach Klein)