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The StayFocusd extension has been designed by Transfusion Media for improving work productivity by providing an active restraint mechanism while browsing online. As the name suggests, it keeps you in continuous self-control by blocking the time-wasting websites beyond a certain pre-specified time limit. This goes a long way in maintaining your focus on the job at hand.
This productivity extension for Google Chrome aids in working during office hours by restricting the amount of time you can squander on websites like Facebook, Twitter, your email account, RSS feeds, Wikipedia, gaming sites like Farmville and online Poker, and even Google itself (if it is used for personal browsing). This is achieved by marking the mentioned sites as blocked, due to which these are allotted a fixed time span. After you have used up the allotted time, the restricted sites will be inaccessible for the rest of the day. Constant use of this extension enables you to develop better self-control and improved efficiency and efficacy, thereby acting as a passive factor in your career growth.
After the installation of the StayFocusd extension, an icon is placed in the address bar of the Chrome browser, which allows you to configure and alter it as per the specific needs. It is highly configurable, and permits you to block or allow entire sites, specific sub-domains, specific paths, and specific pages. Additionally, even specific in-page content (videos, games, images, forms, etc) can be restricted by using the “Nuclear Option”. These can be permanent restrictions or for a specified time period given your preferences.
The most interesting part of this self-induced restraining order is a chance for you to develop your controlling capabilities if you are weak-willed, and/or see yourself as cheating by extending the allotted time. This can be achieved through a feature called as “Require Challenge”. If this option is selected, you will be required to complete a difficult – but not impossible – challenge before you are allowed to change any settings. As it becomes tougher and more complicated for you to change settings, it greatly reduces the chances for you to cheat.
To maintain consistency if you are using different computers while working from office and from home, you can export your settings as a backup and transfer them to the other computer. Organizations can also use this extension to provide their workforce with limited access to all the websites with a view towards offering occasional relief and relaxation without going overboard. This will enable them to extract the optimum work performance from the employees using computers, while not compromising on the quality of working conditions. This tool can, therefore, induce and enable an efficient and effective work culture allowing for workers’ overall development and knowledge.
The StayFocusd tool can potentially be a great way to keep your professional performance constantly improving while also enjoying precious downtime. Whereas for the adventurous minds, it takes an additional step forth by challenging them before changing the settings, thereby providing an exciting edge and feel to the whole browsing experience.