Given the overpowering addictive nature of smartphones, putting our devices down for an extended period of time has become difficult to near impossible.
One minute of checking an email notification turns into thirty minutes of scrolling and swiping through messages, memes, and a myriad of pointless cat videos.
To improve our businesses, relationships, and productivity, we need to limit our interaction with unproductive technology. To that end, the following five apps can help you limit screen time and be more productive with your time.
Moment is a simple app that’ll help you track and manage how much time you spend on your phone. You can set time limits, enable reminders, and enable automatic shut-offs.
If you’d like, you can even set up Moment family-wide. The app runs in the background and will automatically manage your family’s custom phone limits — which can come in handy during dinner time.
Flipd helps you limit screen time by locking your phone for a set amount of time. In this case, your social media applications disappear until the timer ends. However, while the app restricts your social media distractions, you can still receive calls and texts.
To keep users motivated and to reward self-control, the app offers vouchers and gift coupons. Better yet, the app comes at zero-cost, with added functionality available for $0.99/month.
3. Goodnight Chrome
For all those Internet junkies out there, the Goodnight Chrome app is a blessing. As you can tell from the name itself, this app will work for Chrome users only. It’s a great tool that helps you take your nights back from your computer.
Once installed, all you need to do is specify when you want Chrome to close for the day. During the closing period, Chrome prevents you from accessing the web on its platform.
The AntiSocial app helps you spend less time playing around with your phone. It’s a social media tracking app that identifies how much time you spend on apps, so you can become more aware of your online behaviors.
With an easy-to-read chart, you can view the amount of time spent on Facebook, Instagram, emails, games, and other apps. Users can even set a daily limit for each app — meaning, you could ask the app to shut down Facebook after 30 minutes of activity.
The app also compares your usage to other app users to help you gauge how “normal” your usage is.
The Forest app tries to cut back your habit of excessive phone usage by helping you stay focused on real-world tasks. Set a timer on the app and ‘plant a seed.’ When this happens, your seed will grow into a tree. However, if you unlock your phone before the timer is up, your tree will die.
To encourage this behavior, Forest will send you digital coins every time you grow a full tree. Over time, you can use these rewards to grow a real tree.
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