How to overcome procrastination with 7 simple apps

We’ve all been there — you have an important task to complete, but you just can’t focus on it. You just want to see one more YouTube videos, and then there you go, I promise.

If this sounds familiar, you’re in good company. Procrastination leads to wasted time that could be better spent getting things done. If you have trouble concentrating, try some of these apps and tips to overcome procrastination. They will help you break a bad habit and get to work.

Procrastination happens when you are overwhelmed. When you have a busy schedule and there doesn’t seem to be enough time for it all, the best strategy is to list and organize your approach to tasks.

The 1-3-5 App List helps you do that by choosing one main task, three medium tasks, and five smaller tasks to complete throughout the day. You tick them off as you move, giving your brain a boost of endorphins when you do.

This task reward system helps you overcome procrastination by staying focused and it keeps you from getting overwhelmed by to-do lists. The 1-2-3 list is available on most browsers, including the Google Chrome extension.

If you’re like most people, you’ll grab your phone whenever there’s any downtime. According to studies, people check their phones every 12 minutes, or about 80 times per day.

Checking your phone will disrupt your mental focus and force your brain to shift gears, resulting in a lot of wasted time. This bad habit can be hard to break, but Checky can help. This app tells you how often you check your phone to help you break the habit.

There’s a reason in the battle to overcome procrastination that you can simply say “no”. If you can’t resist lazily opening Facebook or Twitter, give Freedom a try. This website blocker will block you from the websites you list and will not let you back until a certain amount of time has passed.

You can create custom times of the day when you are not authorized to access these websites. You can also block apps or the entire internet if needed. If you download the Chrome version, Freedom works with several other extensions to provide time tracking and more.

The Pomodoro Technique is one of the most powerful tools for overcoming procrastination. The premise behind this technique is simple: you set a timer for a set amount of time (usually 25 minutes) and work non-stop until the buzzer goes off.

Then you take a five-minute break. After another 25 minutes, rest for 10 minutes. Rinse and repeat. It gives you time to decompress between each focused session while giving you the motivation you need to get your work done.

The link above is a web-based timer that can be customized to suit your preferences.

Todoist is one of the most popular to-do list apps on the web, and for good reason. The app syncs with the web platform so you have access to your to-do list no matter which platform you use. You can set tasks for today, tomorrow, next week, or list them without a date. You can also set recurring tasks or schedule them to show up only on certain days.

Todoist is one of the most flexible scheduling apps available, allowing customization to exact dates and times for your tasks. If you have a busy schedule with lots of different things to do, you can set them all up in Todoist — then organize them under Personal, Shopping, and Business tabs.

Building good habits in the long run is great, but it’s not always the most enjoyable thing to do right now. Habitica aims to change that. Habitica is a web and app-based tool for “forming” good habits and overcoming procrastination.

You can set goals and keep track of your to-do list throughout the day. As you check out the to-dos, you can unlock in-game features like special armor, pets, and even quests. As your avatar grows stronger, you can use it to battle monsters with other players.

The gold you earn from defeating these monsters can then be used to buy in-game rewards or custom (self-executing) rewards, like playing a game for 15 minutes or watching an episode of your favorite show.

Sometimes, the best way to beat procrastination is simply to be reminded to get back to work. Do is one of the best reminder apps available on iOS. You can set a reminder for any task and add or remove time from a specific reminder with a single tap.

If you don’t mark the reminder as complete, Due will keep reminding you until you do so — or until you reschedule or turn Autosnooze off. Dues cannot be ignored once it starts going down. If you’re like most people, you procrastinate at a certain time of day. Maybe after lunch?

Just set a reminder in Due and your phone will alert you before you can slip into a food coma. It might just be what you need to get back to work. Do can also remind you via iPad or Apple Watch. This is the only app on this list that isn’t free, only costing $6.99.

Procrastination isn’t just about getting things done. If you wait until the last minute to complete a task, the quality of your work will drop — and the last thing you want is to submit shoddy work at school or your job. If motivation is an issue for you, overcome procrastination with these simple apps.

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