Focus is one of my dearest tools. It helps me cut out distractions, by blocking those websites I shouldn’t browse when I need to focus. It may sound somewhat excessive but this little assistant helps me be very conscious about what I do through the day.

There are two main features which helps me in my workflow:

1. Timed sessions

The best part of Focus is that you can set it to run as a timer. This makes it very much like a Pomodoro timer, and breaks down time into smaller individual chunks so that a task doesn’t seem overwhelming.

When I find it hard to get started with something, I tell myself I only need to sit down with it for 5 minutes. So I start a timer for 5 minutes, but when the time is up I’ve almost always found the flow to continue going.

2. Scripting

Focus is also scriptable, which makes it simple to automate this workflow. I have a macro set up through Keyboard Maestro so when I press Caps Lock + D it asks me how long I need to focus and then automatically kicks off that focused session.


The more I use this tool, the better it gets. It’s a small utility, and it just sits in the menu bar so it’s easy to overlook the impact this tool can have. I can’t count how many times throughout a single day I want a break from something, and unconsciously I head over to one of my favorite sites for mindless scrolling. But Focus is there as a guiding light, telling me that this isn’t appropriate right now and that I should get back to work.