This Chrome Extension Will Help You Work Less

We often write about productivity and, well, life hacks on Lifehacker; how to hack your space , your iPhone , your resume and next job interview , even your dishwasher tablets to create more storage, more functionality, more features, more cleanliness. But what about when we need to create less? Less stress, less deadlines, less work? When we’re so caught up in the professional pursuit of purpose and money (and the domestic pursuit of a Pinterest-worthy organization) that we really need to switch off and not work at all ? Because it can be difficult to take a break from work, there’s now a Chrome extension to help you do just that, called Productivity Blocker .

Is productivity blocker a joke?

Something like. But not completely. What started out as a parody of our society’s “hustle culture”, according to copywriter and co-author Steve Nass, has legitimate functionality to block over 80 sites that Nass and his co-author Corey Broscius found “productive”, including: Slack, Fiverr , Duolingo, Linkedin and Dropbox. “Because there are so many Chrome extensions out there to help you buckle up and get things done, we thought it would be fun to do the opposite,” says Nass.

In fact, there are over 100,000 Chrome extensions available, most of which claim to be able to schedule appointments faster, find contact information, block rogue browser tabs, and “ Get better with Gmail ” (whatever that means). It’s not always easy to get rid of the American “live to work” mentality that requires us to always strive, prove and move forward, becoming even more efficient along the way. (See the celebration of the hashtag #Riseandgrind.)

How does a performance blocker work?

So why not, along with thousands of Chrome extensions designed to hack into our work lives, take advantage of one that helps reduce downtime? With the performance blocker enabled, all attempts to access “productive” sites where real work can be done will be redirected to their custom blocking page adorned with the message “Oh. Sounds like you were trying to be productive in your scheduled free time. Check out our set of fun links below.” (Links with temptingly nonsensical titles such as Trampoline Shopping, Instant Briefs, and List of Animals with Human Credentials .)

“By the way, we encourage people to send us any productive websites that we missed,” adds Nass. “We will gladly block them too.”

How to Get the Performance Blocker Extension

Productivity Blocker can be downloaded for free from the website or from the Chrome Web Store . (Click Add to Chrome, Add Extension .) Once downloaded, the extension can be easily enabled or disabled by clicking the performance lock icon in the browser. According to Nass, “When you install a Chrome extension, it’s disabled first, so you can enable it when you’re ready.” While it’s currently only available on laptops/desktops, the makers say they may create a version for smartphones in the future.

We all deserve a little less time obsessing over this presentation and a little more time to enjoy wacky animal trick videos and pick a side in the Reddit debate about whether a handheld scanner at a grocery store checkout is better than using a flatbed scanner. .

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