Cal Newport: Franklin Foer on Technology’s Surprising Threat to Humanity

Contemplating the Importance of Contemplation

Franklin Foer has a new book coming out this week. It’s titled, World Without Mind: The Existential Threat of Big TechRead more

Caroline Raphael: Finding the Focus to Make Great Radio

At Freedom we love our users – not just because they use our product, but because they’re cool – cool people working on cool stuff. Academy Award-nominated screenwriters, best-selling authors, editors, designers, star TV actors & writers, academic researchers, explorers, and entrepreneurs – the Freedom community is packed with curious, creative, and efficient go-getters. We love to share their stories and advice, because how better to learn about productivity than from the productive?

Meet Caroline Raphael. Read more

Alessandra Torre: On Conquering Distractions to Write Bestsellers

At Freedom we love our users – not just because they use our product, but because they’re cool – cool people working on cool stuff. Academy Award-nominated screenwriters, best-selling authors, editors, designers, star TV actors & writers, academic researchers, explorers, and entrepreneurs – the Freedom community is packed with curious, creative, and efficient go-getters. We love to share their stories and advice, because how better to learn about productivity than from the productive?

This week’s spotlight goes to Alessandra Torre. Read more

Is Social Media Robbing Us of Our Dearest Hopes and Dreams?

The biggest problem with social media? It is designed to give us exactly the opposite of what we truly want in life.

James Williams’ talk, Are Digital Technologies Making Politics Impossible?, is a must-listen. Riffing on the story of Diogenes and Alexander (with an interpretive lens drawn from Peter Sloterdijk) and Herbert Simon’s definition of an attention economy, Williams posits that there is a massive discrepancy between the design of digital technology and what we, the users, genuinely want for our lives.

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Finding the Freedom to Focus: An ADHD Coach Weighs In

From time to time, all of us have difficulty finding focus and concentration to get things done. However, for those affected by ADHD, finding focus in daily life can seem like a task of herculean proportion.

This week we decided to sit down with Casey Dixon, a senior certified ADHD coach and the ADHD strategist of MindfullyADD, to learn more about her thoughts on how Freedom can help those with ADHD focus, prioritize, and self-regulate in their jobs, studies, and home lives. Read more

Cal Newport: Aziz Ansari Quit the Internet

The Disconnected Life

Aziz Ansari recently deleted the web browser from his phone and laptop. He also stopped using email, Twitter and Instagram.

As he explained in an interview with GQ, when he gets into a cab, he now leaves his phone in his pocket and simply sits there and thinks; when he gets home, instead of “looking at websites for an hour and a half, checking to see if there’s a new thing,” he reads a book. Read more

How to Stay Focused While Studying, Backed by Research

Studying is tough. Whether you’re a veteran student getting a Ph.D. or someone starting high school, figuring out how to stay focused while studying is a challenge that we all face. Whether your biggest challenge is social media, procrastination, time management, or a combination of all three, we’ve got a variety of tools and techniques that can help minimize the stress of studying and keep you focused on what matters. Read more

Tristan Harris: How Tech Could Protect Us From Distraction

 

How often does tech distract us from what we should really be working on? Tristan Harris, previously a design ethicist at Google, believes that it’s far too often. Harris argues that the notifications, pings, and buzzes we so often crave are stealing away our most precious resource – time. Quick checks of email and Facebook very quickly turn into minutes, and then hours of scattered focus and distraction. And unfortunately, even when we know we’re being distracted, it’s not enough to combat our brain’s instinctive response to seek novelty and reward. We click and get sucked into wasting more of our time. Read more

Sleep Hacks: The Do’s and Don’ts of Better Sleep

When it comes to my pursuit of more blissful mornings and getting more sleep, I’ve certainly had my slew of FAIL moments (like thinking going to bed 2 hours before my girlfriend was going to last), but I‘ve also come out the other side having learned a thing or two. I even built a texting buddy named Emile to help implement some of my wisdom.

So here are my DO’s and DON’Ts for using sleep to live a more intentional life:

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Productivity Starts with Your Morning Routine – Alex Soojung-Kim Pang

I’m a night owl. In college I was one of those people who normally started work around 11 PM. But today I get up at 5 a.m. to write, and it’s one of the most important things I do to stay productive and hit my deadlines.

There’s a quality to my concentration in the early hours that is unique: because I’m a little bleary the door to my subconscious is still a little ajar, I’m not tempted to self-distract with Facebook, and I have the house to myself. In those early, focused hours, ideas come easily that would take immense effort later in the day; I write at a pace and quality that is hard (but not impossible) to achieve at other times.  Read more