It’s difficult to stop checking Facebook. It’s almost habit at this point, isn’t it? But well, you know by now that it’s affecting your productivity. And it isn’t healthy for you either.
We need to find ways to make Facebook productive, whether it’s by breaking our habit, turning Facebook into something else, or figuring out why we use it so much. Through a few apps and extensions, you can start fighting Facebook’s time sink.
1. ToDoBook (Chrome): Finish Your To-Dos Before You Can See Your News Feed
The newest productivity tool on the block is ToDoBook, which has a simple but effective approach to tackling the Facebook problem. ToDoBook is a Chrome extension that replaces your News Feed with a to-do list. You have to add tasks manually, and tick them off as you finish them. Once you’ve finished your list, you will see your News Feed again.
Of course, you can disable it at any time if you want to. Sometimes, there might be an important post on Facebook you need to check. Just click on the ToDoBook icon in the browser toolbar to temporarily disable it.
The larger point of this extension is to put a barrier in your productivity-busting bad habit of checking Facebook. Finish your tasks first! And remember, even if you don’t use Chrome, you can install the extension on Opera or other Chromium-based browsers.
Download — ToDoBook for Chrome (Chrome Web Store) [No Longer Available]
2. Why Go On Facebook (Chrome): Just Being Mindful Can Help
We already know that mindful web surfing can help you focus on what matters. Similarly, a gentle nudge about your Facebook habits might make you invest your time more wisely.
Why Go On Facebook is a Chrome extension that activates the minute you visit Facebook. That could be if you visit the homepage, or if you click a link you found online. Choose from one of the three options you can see above, and the extension will add them over time to find why you’re going to the social network.
Just questioning your motives can be a simple step in breaking bad habits. And over time, once you see your stats, you will want to change them for the better.
Download — Why Go On Facebook for Chrome (Chrome Web Store)
3. Ghost for Chat (Chrome): Use Messenger Without Distractions
One of Facebook’s most useful products is the Messenger app. But the minute you’re online, people will start sending you messages even if you’re too busy to talk. And nope, changing your status doesn’t seem to have much effect. Plus, the “Seen” status also lets them know that you’re reading their messages, even if you aren’t responding.
Ghost for Chat is the solution to all your Facebook Chat distractions. It has two basic options. “Ghost Mode” does not show you as online, even while you continue to use Chat to talk with the people you want to. And “Unseen Message” stops people from knowing when you’ve read their messages. So you can still check them without any social faux pas.
Remember, you can use Messenger without Facebook too. But this gives you the best of both worlds, sans unwanted distractions.
You should know that the “Ghost Mode” is a paid feature, costing $20 per year. The “Unseen Message” feature is free though.
Download — Ghost for Chat for Chrome (Chrome Web Store)
4. Jarvis Bot (Facebook): Reminders From Facebook
If you aren’t using Facebook’s new Messenger bots already, you’re missing out. These bots, created by third-party developers, can make your life easier in many ways. Of these, Jarvis is one of the best Messenger bots you should use.
Jarvis is one of the simplest reminder tools you’ll use. Whether it’s on your phone or on the computer, just send Jarvis a message telling him when you would like to be reminded about something. You can use simple language, which the bot will translate into specific commands. And Jarvis will confirm it too, so you can see that it understands.
5. Take A Five (Web, Chrome): Self-Destructing Timed Tabs to Limit Your Breaks
Do you find that your five-minute breaks turn into much longer affairs when you’re on Facebook? You need to start using Take A Five. It’s a simple website that creates self-destructing tabs, which will shut down after a pre-determined time.
Take A Five v2.0 has several changes from when we first saw it as a tool for daily habit hacks. While the core stays the same you can now change the background, use a new Chrome extension, and use a URL trick to set a custom time without visiting the site. For example, if you want to take a break for seven minutes, directly type takeafive.com/?time=7 in your URL bar.
Take A Five is one of the most useful tools ever made for Facebook addicts. Make it a habit for yourself to use Facebook only through Take A Five, and you’ll stop wasting more time than you intended on the social network.
Is Facebook Hurting Your Productivity?
How disciplined are you with your Facebook usage? Are you able to stay off it when you need to, or do you find it taking away time that you should have dedicated to other tasks?