Unplug and Focus: Beating Distractions on Your Mac

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Editorial Team

Distractions are aplenty and the bane of living in an increasingly digital world. From incessant notifications to social media and emails, you are constantly pulled into different directions when focusing on a task. Luckily, there are some strategies you can implement to unlock the true potential of your Mac and finish your tasks without losing focus.

In-built Tools

Your Mac has several built-in tools to help you avoid distractions. Let’s explore some of them.

  • Screen Time: This application provides a detailed overview of how you use your Mac computer. It lets you set limits on how much time you spend on certain websites and apps. You can open Screen Time by clicking the Apple menu > System Preferences > Screen Time. You can even lock the Screen Time settings so that you need to provide a password to allow you additional time when the limit expires.
  • Do Not Disturb: The feature silences all notifications, including emails, texts, and calls. You can turn on Do Not Disturb by opening the Control Center and clicking the Do Not Disturb button. It is also possible to schedule Do Not Disturb so it turns on and off at certain times or when using specific applications.
  • Focus: Focus is an upgrade to the Do Not Disturb feature and helps you block distracting websites and apps for a specific time. You can set up Focus by going to the Control Center and clicking the Focus button. Then, click the plus sign to create a New Focus. Various presets, such as Personal, Work, or School, are already available. Additionally, you can create a custom Focus mode.

Additionally, you can deactivate iMessage if you are getting too many messages and wondering how to stop receiving messages on MacBook. Or you can turn off the notifications by going to the Apple menu > System Preferences > Notifications > Messages > turn off the toggle next to Allow Notifications. Silencing iMessage notifications is possible if you uncheck Play Sound Effects by opening the Messages app > click Messages and then Settings.

Third-Party Apps

In addition to the built-in tools mentioned above, you can install several third-party applications on your Mac computer to avoid distractions.

  • HazeOver

Regardless of how many tasks you are juggling at a time, you likely have several windows open on your computer. These may include several applications and browser tabs. With these numerous displays in sight, it might be overwhelmingly distracting.

This is where HazeOver comes to your rescue. The app helps you focus on whatever you are doing at the moment. It highlights the active window and dims the rest. You can adjust the intensity and color of the dimmed background to ease the load on your eyes, especially when working at night.

  • Freedom

Freedom is one of the best applications to help you focus at work. The app lets you block distracting apps and websites so you can focus on your tasks. With this app, you do not have to worry about messages, email promotions, or Instagram notifications demanding your attention when trying to finish your tasks.

The notable features of this app are blocking all types of apps and websites, automated scheduling options for blocking, and providing ambient sounds and focus music. You can use the application on unlimited devices per session and sync the blocking preferences on each one.

  • SelfControl

Are you addicted to social media? SelfControl is the application you need, as it will show you some tough love to help you overcome your addiction and focus on work.

This is an application and website blocker that prevents users from accessing the blocked applications for a specified time. This means you won’t be allowed to check Facebook or Instagram every five minutes or refresh your Twitter feed. This app aims to break the cycle of addiction so you can live a distraction-free life.

The features of this application are unlimited access and the option to create an extensive block list. You can set timers, and even if you delete the apps or reboot your computer, the block won’t be removed. Using this app, you can block anything on your Mac computer. If you want to remove the block early, the only solution is to reinstall the operating system.

  • Noizio

Are you easily distracted by noise? Since silence is not always the option, the next best thing is Noizio. You can use this app to tune out the noise so you can focus on your work.

It is a simple application packed with ambient sounds that play in the background. There are calming and relaxing sounds, like the sound of the rain and chirping birds. You can adjust the volume of each sound individually.

Wrapping Up

So, this is how you beat distractions when working on your Mac computer. If you have more to add, leave a comment.