VISUAL GUIDE |CREATE A DISTRACTION-FREE WORKSPACE
Working from home can be a lonely experience, but Noizio (free from noiz.io) can give you a sense of companionship and prevent the silence driving you to distraction. Choose from relaxing waves on a beach, soothing rainstorms or the gentle background chatter of a busy cafe. It’s surprisingly effective at keeping your mind on the job, and you can also play your iTunes at the same time.
Grab some Coffitivity
Coffitivity performs a similar function to Noizio, but as well as a regular Mac app it can be run from the browser, so you can benefit from its background chatter while you’re hot-desking. You can choose from three coffeeshop soundtracks at coffitivity.com or go premium to double that number (including a sophisticated Parisian option). Apps for iOS and Android let you tune in to cafe culture when away from your net connection, too.
Distraction-free word processor
Word and Pages are great for putting together highly formatted documents, but it’s always tempting to spend as much time playing with fonts and sizes as it is to actually write your document. Remove the temptation to fiddle with the look of your file until you’ve finished writing it by switching to a minimalist text editor such as Typed (realmacsoftware.com/typed).
Slim down the Dock
Take non-vital apps such as Twitter, Messages and games out of the Dock and you’ll be less tempted to click on them. Optionally, remove Applications from Spotlight results too, by opening the Spotlight pane in System Preferences and unchecking the box beside Applications on the Search Results tab, to put them another step further from your regular working environment.
If slimming the Dock doesn’t work, set up a new user account (through the Users pane in System Preferences) and then use Parental Controls (also in System Preferences) to limit application and web access. Select the new user account, click Web and then select the radio button beside Allow Access to only see chosen websites. Use the list below it to specify a small number of essential sites, or remove all sites from the list altogether.
Apply a router block
Finally, if you still find yourself cheating, consider blocking internet access at your router. Most allow you to set a schedule during which internet access should be unavailable – it’s designed so you can restrict children’s usage. Be careful when taking such a drastic step, though, as it will block access for everyone on your network and any iOS devices connected to the internet over Wi-Fi.