Continuing the story of what I’ve done to manage my environment…
Having taken care of most of the problems around the house, I turned to my biggest distraction of all — the Internet. The thing that is sitting right there as I type. Where I can hit a wall, and be sitting there staring at the screen, struggling to find the words I’ve lost and suddenly my hands are opening the email, or worse, Internet Explorer. Drudge… Powerline… The Diplomad (my favorite)… One link leads to another… and another…
And before I know it an hour passes and I’ve done nothing except sit there, getting stiff, getting tired of sitting, getting tired of reading and when I finally drag myself away from it, whatever I was working on is now Far, Far Away.
I have tried before to deal with this problem — going so far as to pull the plug on the modem just to deny myself Internet access. But it’s in the other room, it’s a pain to get up and do it, a pain to have to go back and plug it back in when I’m done, then wait for it to go through its rebooting process. And that’s if I don’t manage to drop the cord behind the cabinet it’s sitting on. Or forget to replug it entirely.
Plus it cuts off my hubby’s computer from the Internet as well, meaning I can’t use it when he’s around. And sometimes when I plug it back in, the connection doesn’t come back right, so then I have to reboot the whole computer.
And, even with all that, it’s too easy to get up and go in there and plug it back in, when I really, really don’t want to work.
Well, I did some research on distractions faced by work-at-homers or “telecommuters,” as they’re officially called, and in the course of that discovered the most amazing software. It’s called Freedom. It works with Macs and PC’s and with only a few clicks you can protect yourself from Internet access for whatever time you desire to set up — from as little as 15 minutes, all the way up to 8 hours.
During that time the program is deliberately unresponsive but if you’re really set on regaining your Internet access all you have to do is reboot your computer. (Which is a little more involved than going into the other room to plug in the cord) If you stick with it, though, once the time you’ve set it for has elapsed, a little window appears announcing that your Freedom session has ended and giving you the option to start another, or quit the program.
I’ve been setting it for three hours every morning. It’s awesome. I love it! So easy to use and along with turning off the phone ringers and answering machine sound, has created a little pocket of uninterrupted time I can actually work in.
Everyday last week I came into the office and worked a minimum of 4 hours.
That hasn’t happened in I don’t know how long.
The program’s downloadable online and costs $10. Takes almost no time to download and install. If you’re having trouble staying away from the Internet and want to check it out, click HERE.