Apps That Help Keep You Focused

By Rebecca Rubin

I’m right on the verge of being unhealthily addicted to my phone. It’s by my side about 99.9 percent of the time, and I’m always on it either texting, Snapchatting my friends or checking social media. All things that sound really unproductive, right? Well, in a quest to get my mom to stop yelling at me to quit wasting time staring at my phone, I’ve found some apps that will boost productivity and keep you organized.

1. iPassword

The days before the World Wide Web took over were much simpler times. But, now not only do we need a password for just about everything, but each site has a unique algorithm for creating a password. Requirements can be as simple as having a minimum of 8 characters to more complex items like requiring a capital letter or a symbol. Then you have the plain old unnecessary, where the password can’t be a word in the dictionary. Seriously, it took me 30 minutes the first time I had to come up with a password for my UFL account. But basically, everything from Netflix and Facebook to Gmail and job application sites have you create different passwords. With this app, all you need to remember is one master password, which unlocks the app and stores any and all passwords you might need.

2. Forest

Ever feel tempted to constantly refresh your Facebook feed, even though you know there won’t be any new posts? Forest can help by incentivizing you to stay off distracting apps. Just select the sites most likely to sidetrack you – I’m looking at you, Buzzfeed – and Forest will grow a tree while you stay off them. If you leave the app before the time you set, you kill your tree. No pressure.

3. Remember the Milk

I’m a firm advocate of writing out weekly to-do lists. Every single Sunday I sit down with my calendar and map out exactly what I have to complete that week. If you’ve got a lot to do and you don’t want to let anything slip through, Remember the Milk is the ideal reminder. Write down your weekly plans, and the app can remind you via email, text or even Twitter. It’s an idea organizer for any busy body.


Writing fosters creativity, and the List App is the perfect platform to share your opinions and observations. Users can share funny, thoughtful or clever lists using text, photos and GIFs. The app was co-created by B.J. Novak, most notable for his work on “The Office.” Some lists created by users are silly: “People I’d Thank In My Oscar Acceptance Speech” some are therapeutic: “Things I’m Working On” and some are just plain entertaining: “The Last 5 Photos I Took, Explained.” The app is a unique way to share your perspective.


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