One of the most difficult aspects of making money from home is the “from home” part. Although this is appealing to most, writers quickly learn that working from home is no easy task. There are many tips available to help a writer stay focused, but the biggest distraction usually isn’t the food in the kitchen or the soap opera that comes on at noon. The biggest distraction is, of course, the computer. The particularly tricky part of this truth is the idea that writers have to work on the computer. In other words, writers need to somehow figure out a way to be productive on the very thing that causes distraction.
Fortunately, there are many browser extensions that a writer can put in place to help make sure that he/she can be a successful writer without the distractions. Although many writers have made it work without any help, it’s easy for the day to drag on and last twelve hours. The goal for a writer online should be to have a typical eight hour workday, and browser extensions can help.
Top 5 Browser Extensions to Help You Stay Focused
For those who are unfamiliar, a browser extension is something that you add-on to your browser that will change the way your browser works. These extensions are never permanent and are usually very easy and quick to download. Browser extensions are sometimes referred to as add-ons or plugins (although there are slight differences). Below are some of the most effective plugins for Chrome that I’ve found during my time as a writer:
1. Chrome Nanny – This is your staple browser extension for those looking to focus. It will help you block out certain websites during certain times of the day. For example, you could block yourself from using Facebook from 9-5 Monday thru Friday. You can also group block certain sites or set a time limit for a specific site to be blocked.
2. Evernote Web Clipper – This is a must have extension for many writers because it helps articles get written faster. Evernote allows you to take pieces of articles that you see online and comment on them for later use. What is also great about this tool is that it will save information and then lets you retrieve that information across all of your devices (tablet, mobile phone, desktop, etc.), so it works like a document management software without the huge price-tag.
3. StayFocused – As the name suggests, this is a great tool for those who need to concentrate. The extension sets a time limit on certain websites so that you do not spend hours on Facebook. If you set your time limit to ten minutes, it will kick you off of that website in ten minutes.
4. Send to Kindle – I think this is one of the coolest extensions because it is so unconventional. This is one of the few extensions I’ve found that actually takes away the distractions of the computer by getting you off your computer. Whenever you find something that will be of use to you later, you can use this extension and just download everything to your Kindle.
5. Similar Pages – This extension is a little button that you can click to get articles related to the article you are reading. This helps speed up research because you no longer have to resort back to Google!
Although I highly recommend using the search engine Chrome, where you will find all of these extensions, there are similar extensions available with other browsers like Internet Explorer or Firefox. Once you have identified where you have trouble focusing, you will certainly be able to find the extension that is right for you.
Do you use any browser extensions to help you stay on task? Let us know in the comments!
Photo Credit: terrywhalin.blogspot.com
Amanda DiSilvestro is a writer on topics ranging from social media to business promotional items. She writes for an online resource that gives advice to small businesses and entrepreneurs for the leading business directory, Business.com.