Favorite Reads 1.0: Habits, Distraction & Productivity

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At Freedom, our mission is to “make technology less distracting.”  While our core product gives people the ability to block digital distractions, our daily search for knowledge is focused on deeply understanding the human relationship with technology and how we can change habits. Below are few of our favorite reads that examine the ‘why,’ ‘where,’ and ‘how’ of habits, distraction and productivity in our digital world.

WHY [digital world]

User behaviour

We’re fascinated by this essay because it addresses the core behavioral drivers behind why we do what we do at Freedom. What are the mechanisms that influence the brain to crave the allure of digital distractions and the associated neural rewards?

Author Michael Schulson then poses the controversial question: should the internet be regulated like drugs or casinos? With digital devices designed for compulsion, and even addiction – is it fair to place the onus of self-control exclusively on the user? The essay closely examines the moral gray area that surrounds designing digital contraptions that strive to promote compulsive and addictive behaviors. He also examines the possibility that regulation might even expand our users’ choices. READ IT
>>

WHERE [private space]

“How to Clear Your Computer of Focus-Draining Distraction

This article from Hooked author Nir Eyal does a great job explaining the importance of making your work space a place that promotes productivity. Clutter has a high cost to productivity, whether physical or digital. Just as a cluttered desk makes it more difficult to focus and be efficient, a cluttered digital environment is filled with triggers that distract us into doing less important tasks – ultimately preventing us from doing our best work. Learn why a phenomenon called “attention residue” makes it so much harder for us to focus after we have been distracted. Contains tips on how you too can declutter your digital environment in just a few steps. READ IT >>

HOW [tools & techniques]

“Deep Focus”

Our final favorite read comes from noted photographer Eric Kim. In this post he tells all about his obstacles with distraction, and getting “in the zone,” while working. Kim answers provide the “how-to” for maximizing your focus and reducing the digital static that distracts you from your most important work. READ IT >>

Got any favorite productivity reads? We’d love to hear ‘em! Tweet us @freedom or comment below.

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