Apps to end procrastination

Science Editor guides you through the best apps that make procrastination a thing of the past

Frustrated with your productivity? Do you go through cycles of optimistic and exuberant ambition and crashes where you realise that you haven’t done anything more productive this morning other than read your emails? Well, it’s time to use smarter tools to fight that, to use the right tech to get you doing what you should – rather than what you really want to be doing.




This app’s advantages are an easy, simple and elegant exterior and all the functions of a list app that you’d want. This includes  the ability to set reminders, synchronise it with your email, share your ‘wunderlists’ with other users and making them public.







For those who believe work should be aesthetically and playfully enhanced, this is the ideal app. You create a pixelated avatar with multiple features similar to the characters of most role-playing video games, including money, health and gems. The point is to enhance your character by giving yourself tasks such as ‘write 200 more words for that essay’ or ‘get round to drafting that article on useful apps”. Go ahead and ‘gamify’ your life and use the power of imagery, private heroism and carrot and stick to unlock your potential!






This is a classic must-have app. Other than writing notes, it can be used to audio-record, set reminders and alarms, and share notes and notebooks with work/study colleagues. All of that is available with the free version. I don’t know what the Premium Evernote does. It probably massages your feet while proofreading your dissertation.





4. POCKETPocket

You’ve made it to university, you clearly have something going on  in that brain and you probably enjoy absorbing information. There are tons of  activities, loads  of people, places, events and inventions to read about.
You can kid yourself that reading the New Scientist for two hours is productive, but who’s going to be convinced by that?
Reorganise your reading for personal cultivation through Pocket. Simply copy an article’s URL to your Pocket tab, and it will save the article to all your devices with Pocket for offline reading.
Pocket reads very well on phones and tablets, since it strips the article of adverts, unnecessary pictures and vexing pop-ups.



Freedom5. FREEDOM

Now, if you think of the above as childish nonsense and want something serious, look no further than Freedom. The ironically named app is about as brutal as anti-procrastination tools come, with the exception of power outages. You can set it to block your browser, particular websites or the whole internet. You can’t unlock the blocked items until the amount of time you specified has passed.

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