Stop wasting time, it’s time to start being more productive, why take 3 hours to do something that you could do in half an hour? We tell you what are the best productivity tools to improve your productivity and increase your performance.
Once you manage to stop procrastinating and get down to work it can be difficult to maintain your concentration.
It is true that the electronic devices with which we work are a source of continuous distractions; however, if we use them well they can become the best tool to be more productive.
Only technology is not our ally to improve our performance at work, some more traditional tools, such as notebooks, can also increase our productivity and help us achieve better results.
The best thing is that you can get most of these tools for less than 10 dollars, and even free: if it is your career or personal performance it will be worth the investment.
Take note of these tools that will help you improve productivity.
If you want to be clear on how you spend your time, Rescue Time is your perfect ally. This productivity tool provides intelligent insights into how you spend your days.
This tool tracks the activities and duration of a users’ computer usage.
It allows you to activate notifications to notify you of the time you have been in the same activity, to block the pages that are more distracting for you, to track how much you dedicate to email, to write in Google Docs (or Word) or to meetings with clients, among other things.
This extension for Chrome works in reverse. Instead of setting time periods in which you cannot surf the Internet, it allows you to decide the hours you can access.
For example, if you only intend to spend 60 minutes a day on social networks or Netflix, but you are unable to fulfill it, StayFocusd will do the hard work for you.
It will be like when you were small kid and your parents limited you the time to watch TV.
For Firefox users, the alternative is LeechBlock.
It is impossible to maintain a deep level of concentration for 8 hours in a row. We need to rest, ventilate and recover energy. But entrepreneurs tend to not comply well with those breaks and fall into the computer beatings.
And that’s why Time Out was born. It is a Mac application that works in the background while you work and every so often (for example, 90 minutes) it reminds you to rest 5-10 minutes.
If you are a Windows user, one of the best productivity tools that exist is the Focus Booster, which we will now talk about.
This application is based on the pomodoro technique, a time management method that challenges you to concentrate on a task for 25 minutes and take a break of 5 minutes.
If you scatter easily and have trouble keeping the focus, I recommend that you start working for blocks of time. And for this, Focus Booster is ideal.
Decide the task that you are going to focus and activate the counter. When the 25 minutes are completed, the counter will stop, you will receive a warning and you will know that the time has come to get up from the chair for 5 minutes.
It does not matter what operating system you use, because it works on both Mac and Windows, and is also available for mobile devices (iOS and Android).
Of all the productivity tools, this application is possibly the most radical. It prevents you from surfing the internet when you should be concentrating on strategic tasks.
Its operation is based on defining a range of hours and the application itself ensures that you do not have the temptation of distractions.
Self Control allows you to create white lists of sites, so you can define exceptions and access those pages. Of course, the rest of the internet will be vetoed.
It works only on Mac computers. The alternative for Windows is Freedom, so I’ll tell you a little more about it.
If your downfall is social networks, productivity tools like Freedom will be of great help.
It is similar to Self Control, but it is less radical and does not block access to the internet in its entirety.
Recommended by Tim Ferriss among others, Freedom prevents access to websites such as Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, YouTube, Vimeo and all the usual e-mail managers during the time you define.
Although it seems a clone of Self Control, the 2 main differences between these productivity tools are that Freedom includes a blacklist of sites by default (that you can edit) and that, if you cannot bear the abstinence to connect to the internet, you can recover the connection when you restart the computer (something that Self Control does not allow).
Keep me Out is like a “detoxification” application, since it allows you to receive notifications when you try to access the pages that most distract you.
You can choose whether to activate its operation indefinitely or only during your work hours.
Focus is perfect for maximizing focus when you switch from one task to another.
In your daily routine, you must attend different fronts: write, manage social networks, plan … Well, Focus allows you to configure the tools you need to perform each of the tasks, so that you avoids possible distractions when you finish one and you pass to the next.
Imagine that you are going to write the content. From your configuration, the application will automatically close the email and the browser, block access to your social profiles and open Word.
Similarly, when you go to manage social networks, you can customize the configuration in a completely different way, to allow you to access the sources and pages that will be necessary to execute that task.
Only valid for Mac and is a paid tool (although you have a free 14-day trial and a 2-month money back guarantee in case you try and do not like it).
Creating content requires great concentration, with this app; it is easy to finish a text that costs you a lot of hours.
Focus Writer is the help you need.
What this application does is recreate the environment of a word processor and avoid the interruption of possible distractions.
For this, it blocks absolutely all the elements, except the document where you are going to write and the keyboard (including the date, time and access to the desktop of your computer).
Despite the simplicity of its interface (a background and a canvas to write on), Focus Writer includes the characteristics of a text editor, such as the word counter or the spelling check.
Although these productivity tools help you, the truth is that they cannot force you to work or to advance more and better.
I always say it: the important thing is not the tools … but the method of work.
And now, tell me: is it difficult for you to keep focused on the same task? Have you tried any of these productivity tools? What is your biggest difficulty in being productive? I wait for you in the comments.