17 February 2013


I procrastinate. A lot. And it leads to not doing my work as well as I can. I am always on the search for some way to help keep me working instead of things that don't really matter that much. Here are a list of things that I have found helpful.

The Firefox extension Leechblock or the Chrome extension Nanny. Since switching to the Opera Browser, I haven't found anything similar, maybe I should switch back to one of those browsers. You define websites that you want to limit your time on and you can specify times when you are locked out of those websites and/or an amount of time you want to spend on a certain website over a specified time interval. I found it pretty useful because I have a hard time pulling myself away from random websites sometimes. Metafilter and Reddit have things I need to see.

Project Hamster. It is only available on Linux, I believe. It is a time tracking software that bothers you every five minutes (or specified amount of time) to ask what you are doing. It is a little nudge to remind me to get back to work and looking at the reports on how you spend the day is interesting.

Pomodoro Technique. I have been using this pomodoro application to help track my pomodoros. You break up your day into 25 minute chunks or pomodoros, and take a 3 - 5 minute break in between the pomodoros. After 4 pomodoros, take a 15 - 30 minute break. I'm not quite sure why my brain enjoys this technique so much, but I have been getting so much more work done actively following it. In order to not disturb my pomodoros, I put my chat program on one desktop and I don't look to see if I have any new messages until my break, so if you try to message me and I don't answer right away, that is probably why.

EDIT 8 March 2013
I started using the website Kanban Flow to track Pomodoros and my tasks in general and it is working so so so well.

Having a lot to do. It seems like the more activity I have going on in my life, the more I get done. I spend less time on things that don't really matter and more time getting things done. This semester I am taking 2.25 classes, research, writing papers, collaborating on a project, and spending time with my husband and I have been actually getting most everything done on time and to my high standards.

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