I am an internet addict. I never thought that was a real thing, and honestly it sounds really stupid, but I at times have what feels like a literal inability to do what I need to do if that thing involves sitting at the computer (be it internet writing, or my ‘real job’ or online shopping for something I actually need or having a serious Gchat convo. ) If I’m using a computer, I’m going to have a compulsion to dick around on the internet, no matter what my intent was.
But my saving grace, like a drug addict’s rehab, was Stayfocusd, a Google Chrome extension that has increased my productivity and ability to sit at a computer without distraction greatly.
Stayfocusd works like this: you input your ‘bad websites’–sites good for nothing but wasting time (mine are reddit, Facebook, Amazon, Twitter [but I allow myself Tweetdeck because sometimes I have to Tweet for productive reasons]. Goodreads, Gawker and RedHotPawn, my online chess site of choice [challenge me on it sometime! Twitter me for my username],)–and a time period; mine is set to 15 minutes at work, and 60 minutes at home. The extension then only allows you to use those websites, combined, for that period of time in a one-day period. If you try to access the sites after that you get this lovely page:
It works really well for me, forcing me to avoid procrastination.
Sure, there are work-arounds that defeat the purpose: using a different browser, or just turning the damn thing off, but all-in-all it prevents procrastination very well.
They also have a thing called “The Nuclear Option,” a single button press that bans you from your fun/bad websites for a period of time (I’ve gone nuts and set it to 24 hours before, I think I had delirium tremens,) it works well.
Download it, be productive!