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New Year’s Resolution Help: Freedom from the Internet

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Exercise is at the top of most people’s New Year’s Eve resolution list, but for many tech heads, number two on the list may be spending less time on the internet. To help you achieve this internetless goal, there is an app called Freedom that will help you to control your internet browsing time so that you can be more productive.

The problem is not that the internet is bad, but as many of us know all too well, the internet can be a very bad distraction. Freedom will cut out this distraction by completely cutting off your internet connection. All other non-internet operations on your computer will work normally; this will make it possible for you to still use your PC to work on projects, without the distractions of YouTube, cat pictures, social media, or any other of your favorite time wasters.

Freedom uses blocks of time that you set aside called Freedom Sessions. Sessions can last as long as 480 minutes, and sessions begin once you open Freedom and click on Start Session. Freedom is designed to maximize your productivity while using your PC; because of this, session time only counts the minutes your PC is awake. Although, you can have Freedom countdown the time you are away from your PC by turning off your screensaver.

To quote our veteran friends, “Freedom is not free.” Freedom is priced at ten dollars. This price may seem a bit steep for such a simple application, but by spending ten bucks, this will actually help aide you in achieving your resolution because you will feel more obligated to use it. Gym memberships are supposed to work the same way, at least during the month of January. Freedom does have a free trial version that is fully operational; it is good for only a few sessions. You will be prompted to buy the full version after you have used up all of your free sessions.

Freedom is a helpful app, but it may be a little too easy to work around. Freedom is designed so that once a session is started you cannot mess with the settings and access the internet. But your session will end automatically if you restart your computer; therefore, if you want back online, then all of your distractions are just a reboot away. Another downside is that Freedom does not have a mobile version. This means if you have your smartphone handy, then internet distractions are still in the picture.

Because Freedom falls short of completely locking you out of the internet, we have a few additional tips to share with you that will help you to better control the amount of time that you spend online, as well as the type of websites that you visit.

  • If your New Year’s resolution is to spend less time on social media websites, and you still want internet access to your other applications, then check out an app called Anti-Social that works by denying you access specifically to social media websites.
  • If you are looking to stop viewing adult websites, there is an accountability software called X3watch that will track your browsing history, flag any website for adult content, and send a weekly e-mail report to a friend who has agreed to help you achieve your goal.
  • If you are really dedicated to achieving the goal of no internet, then you can always just cut the cord. Okay, maybe not literally, but most routers do have a power cord that can be easily detached from the router. You can always just unplug the cord and give it to a friend for safekeeping.

Don’t get us wrong, the internet is a great tool that can also make you more productive with several tasks, but it can also serve as a huge distraction for anybody who has a tendency to procrastinate. Would you call yourself a procrastinator? Is the internet a shiny object that easily distracts you? Do you think you will give Freedom a try? Keep in mind that you can better achieve your goals with the help of others, cheer on your brothers and sisters of perpetual procrastination in the comments.