As a busy professional, I know how crucial it is to manage time effectively. And if you’re reading this, chances are, you do too. In fact, a study by Vouchercloud found that the average worker is only productive for 2 hours and 53 minutes in an 8-hour workday. Staggering, isn’t it?

So, how do we combat this productivity pitfall? The answer may lie in a time management technique, known as timeboxing.

My Top 3 Timeboxing Apps for 2024

Usemotion

  • Creates recurring tasks
  • Task Prioritization
  • Meeting assistant

Sunsama

  • Auto Scheduling
  • Guided Planning
  • TaskTools

Freedom

  • Blocks distractions
  • Advanced scheduling
  • Browser extension

What are Time Blocking Apps?

Timeboxing is a simple yet powerful concept where you allocate fixed time periods, or ‘boxes’, for specific tasks. This method keeps your mind from wondering and your schedule under control. But the real magic happens when you take it one step further and combine timeboxing with technology. And that’s where timeboxing apps come into play.

Timeboxing apps have been a game-changer in the world of productivity. They’ve helped me break down our work into manageable chunks, focus on one task at a time, and ultimately, get more done. Timeboxing apps can transform your daily routine and empower you to achieve more.

How can timeboxing apps help you with time management techniques?

Timeboxing apps are an essential tool for productivity and time management. From full-time employees to entrepreneurs, everyone’s jumping on this bandwagon. And for good reason. Research suggests that productivity apps can increase efficiency by more than 34%.

So, what’s all the fuss about?

  1. Task Allocation: Timeboxing apps allow you to allocate specific time slots to each task. This means you’re not spending too much or too little time on a single task. You can break your day into manageable chunks and stay focused on one task at a time.

  2. Visual Representation: Many of these apps provide a visual timeline of your day. This helps you see exactly where your time is going, making it easier to identify any time-wasting activities and adjust your schedule accordingly.

  3. Reminders and Alerts: Ever get so engrossed in a task that you lose track of time? These apps have got you covered. They’ll send you alerts when it’s time to switch tasks, ensuring you stick to your schedule.

  4. Pomodoro Timer: Some timeboxing apps include a Pomodoro timer feature, which is invaluable for maintaining focus and productivity. By structuring work and break periods, it aids in deep work and time management.

  5. Reporting: Want to know how productive your week was? Some apps offer detailed reporting features, giving you insights into your productivity trends and patterns.

  6. Integration: Many timeboxing apps can integrate with other tools you’re already using, creating a seamless workflow and reducing the time spent toggling between apps.

Top 5 Timeboxing Apps you should try

Now that we’ve covered why these time blocking apps are making waves, let’s look at some of the top players in the field. Based on my research, here are five best timeboxing app and apps that are worth checking out:

  1. Sunsama: Combines task management with a daily planner.

  2. Motion: Helps you stay focused by blocking distracting websites.

  3. Freedom: Allows you to block the entire internet or specific apps for set periods.

  4. Morgen: Offers a simple, clean interface for planning your day.

  5. Toggl: Provides detailed reports on where your time is going.

1. Sunsama – Best Time Management App

Sunsama quote stating state planning your day

Sunsama, an-all in-one time and task management app, is like a super smart planner that helps me keep my day on track without feeling too stressed. It’s all about scheduling time blocks to ensure I balance everything – from school work to chill time. With Sunsama, I get to plan my day piece by piece, so I don’t end up with too much on my plate at once.

How I use Sunsama to stay organized

Sunsama has this cool feature called timeboxing. It lets me set aside a specific chunk of time for each thing I need to do. This way, I make sure I’m not just bouncing around tasks but actually finishing them. Here’s how it’s really changed the game for me:

Planning My Day with Help: Every morning, Sunsama guides me through setting up my day. It’s not just about reacting to whatever comes up; it’s about choosing what matters most. I can pull in homework from different places like Google Classroom or notes I’ve made in other apps. Deciding how much time each thing gets means I finish my day feeling good about what I’ve done.

Seeing Everything in One Place: Sunsama shows me all my stuff in one spot – homework, emails from teachers, and any meetings or group projects. I can move things around so I give enough time to the big stuff without getting sidetracked.

Keeping Emails and Tasks Together: I can drag important emails right into my task list and decide when I’ll deal with them. This stops my inbox from bossing me around all day. And if there’s something I need to remember from a chat message, I can turn that into a task too.

Smart Scheduling and Staying Focused: Sunsama figures out where to fit my tasks based on what’s most important and when I have free time. When it’s time to get something done, there’s a Focus Mode that helps me stick to just that one thing, which really helps me do better work.

Checking In on My Week: At the end of the week, I can look back and see how things went. Sunsama shows me what I got done and helps me plan better for next time. It’s quick and keeps me thinking about how I can improve.

Using Sunsama feels like I’ve found extra time in my day. Planning things out and sticking to a schedule has made me way more productive. It’s like I’m in control of my time instead of running around trying to catch up. Knowing exactly what I need to do and when makes me feel calm and focused, and I end my day feeling great about what I’ve accomplished.

Try Sunsama

2. Motion

Usemotion is like a super smart planner that helps me keep track of all my stuff without getting overwhelmed. It’s like having a personal assistant who knows exactly when I should do my homework, chores, or any other tasks, fitting them perfectly around times when I’m busy, like during basketball practice or family dinners.

Here’s why I think this app is awesome for managing my time

It Figures Out My Schedule for Me: Motion looks at everything I need to do and puts it in the best spots throughout my day. I don’t have to scratch my head thinking about what to do next. If I’ve got a big project due or need to study for a test, Motion makes sure I work on it at a time when I can focus best. Plus, the ability to easily rearrange my tasks through a drag and drop interface enhances the app’s flexibility and gives me greater control over my schedule.

It Rolls with the Punches: Sometimes, things don’t go as planned. Maybe a friend drops by unexpectedly, or I spend more time on a task than I thought I would. Motion gets it and can change my schedule on the fly. It moves my recurring tasks around so I can adapt without missing a beat.

It Keeps Me from Overdoing It: I can be the kind of person who tries to do too much at once, which isn’t great. Motion gives me a heads-up if I’m packing my day too tight or if a deadline is creeping up on me. This way, I can shuffle things around before everything turns into a last-minute rush.

We Can All Stay on the Same Page: When I’ve got group projects, Motion is a lifesaver. It helps figure out when everyone can work together without clashing with other stuff we have going on. It makes sure we all know who’s doing what and by when, which means less stress and more getting things done.

Using Motion has made juggling school, hobbies, and hanging out way easier. It’s like playing a video game where Motion is my sidekick, helping me beat the level of “Life Management.” Whether I’m flying solo or working in a team, this app keeps the stress down and lets me get more done, which is pretty cool if you ask me. If you are not convinced you can read my full review.

Try Usemotion

3. Freedom

Freedom is a cool app that helps you stay focused on what’s really important by keeping distractions away. Nowadays, with so many things online grabbing our attention, Freedom steps in to help you keep your productivity up and your focus sharp. It lets you block websites and apps that distract you on any device you use—whether it’s a computer, tablet, or phone. This way, you can concentrate on homework, projects, or anything else you need to do without getting sidetracked.

How Freedom helps you manage your time better

Using Freedom means you’re in charge of your online space. You can start blocking distracting stuff right away or plan it for later, making sure your focus time fits perfectly with your daily or weekly schedule. This flexibility means you can make your productive time work with your life plans. Freedom lets you decide what and when to block, helping you focus better and get your tasks done quicker.

Two time management features of Freedom are

Blocks Distractions Across All Devices: What’s awesome about Freedom is that it blocks distractions on every device you have at the same time. So, if you’re doing homework on your computer and get the urge to check social media on your phone, Freedom blocks those distractions there, too. This is important for staying focused because it stops you from picking up another device to get around the blocks.

Plan Your Focus Time: With Freedom, you can set up times to be distraction-free before they even start, which is great for getting into a good routine. You can make these focus times happen every day or week, so you don’t even have to think about setting them up all the time. This is handy if you have a regular schedule or tasks you do often, making sure you always have time set aside for your most important work without putting it off.

People who use Freedom find about 2.5 extra hours of productive time daily. That’s a lot of extra time to finish a big project, study for a test, or even write a story. Freedom doesn’t just keep you away from distractions; it helps you make more time for what you really want to do, both for school and fun.

Try Freedom

4. Morgen

Morgen is an a calendar app that helps you keep track of all your schedules and tasks in one spot, including seamlessly managing and integrating Google Calendar events alongside other calendar services. Whether you have lots of doctor’s appointments, school meetings, group projects, or need to automatically create new Google Calendar events for your time entries, Morgen makes it super easy to handle everything without getting stressed.

What’s great about Morgen

All Your Calendars in One Place: Morgen works with pretty much every calendar you might use, like Google, Outlook, Apple or even an accountability calendar. That means you can see everything about calendar events you’ve got planned in one app, so you don’t have to keep switching around to check different schedules.

Easy to Share When You’re Free: Morgen has some neat features that let you tell people when you’re not free plan is available without any mix-ups. It checks all your calendars to make sure you don’t plan two things at the same time.

Plan Your Tasks Smartly: Got a long list of homework or chores? Morgen helps you figure out when to do them by setting aside specific times. It even works with other apps you might use for keeping track of tasks, so you can see everything you need to do in one glance.

Customize How You View Your Calendar: You can change how your calendar looks in Morgen to make it easier for you. Plus, it’s smart with time zones, so if you’re talking to friends or family far away, you won’t miss the meeting because of time differences.

Reminders and Color Coding: Morgen lets you set reminders so you won’t forget important stuff. You can also use colors and tags to organize your calendar better, making it look nice and clear.

Work Together Easily: Morgen shows you when others are free, making it simple to reschedule meetings or plan group work without interrupting anyone’s day too much. It’s great for working together more smoothly.

Join Online Meetings Fast: If you have meetings online, Morgen makes it super quick to join with just a click. It works with popular video call apps, so you don’t have to scramble to find the meeting link at the last minute.

Morgen isn’t just for keeping your own life organized; it’s also awesome for teams who want to work better together. With its cool design and helpful features, Morgen is perfect for anyone wanting to make the most of their time, whether you’re on a computer or phone. It’s all about helping you plan, focus, and balance everything you’ve got going on.

Try Morgen

5. Toggl – The Time Tracking App

Toggl Track is a cool app that helps you keep track of how much time you spend doing different things. It’s super easy to use, making it perfect for anyone who wants to make their day more organized and get more stuff done, whether you’re working alone or on a team.

What Toggl Track Is:

Think of Toggl Track as your go-to tool for keeping an eye on the clock without any hassle. It doesn’t matter if you’re part of a big company team, have your own small business, work as a consultant, or are busy with creative projects; Toggl Track has got features that fit just what you need. It’s made to be simple so everyone, from your teammates to your boss, can use it without getting stressed out by tricky tech stuff.

How Toggl Track Helps You Do More:

See Where Your Time Goes Instantly: Toggl Track shows you right away how you or your team are using your time. This intuitive interface means you can quickly see if you’re spending your hours on the right tasks and adjust if you’re not.

Gets Everyone Working Together: Since Toggl Track is so straightforward, it lets everyone pitch in with daily planning and scheduling. This teamwork can help find ways to do things better and make sure everyone’s working on the most important stuff.

Keeps Things Organized: With Toggl Track, you can see all your tasks and projects in one place. This helps you figure schedule time blocks and out what you need to do first to grow your business or finish your projects. It also makes sure no one is too swamped with work while others have free time.

Smart Decisions: The app turns the time you track into useful info that can help you plan better, guess less, and manage your projects smarter. When you know how long tasks take, you can guess time and money more accurately.

Works With Your Favorite Tools: Toggl Track can connect with other apps you like to use for managing projects. This means you can keep everything running smoothly without having to switch back and forth between different project management apps. Toggl Track integrates with various project management tools, highlighting its versatility and utility in managing projects and tasks efficiently.

For those new to tracking time, Toggl Track is a great choice because it’s not hard to learn and you can start using it right away. It even has a free version that’s enough for people working by themselves or in small teams, and you can use it on pretty much any device (like phones, computers, and the web).

Choosing Toggl Track means you’re not just watching the clock; you’re making every minute count towards earning more and having a happier team. It’s all about helping you and your team be smart about how you work together.

Check it out

How to use Timeboxing Apps

But how do you use these tools effectively? Here’s a step-by-step guide based on my research and personal experience.

Step 1: Choose Your App

The first step is to choose the right time blocking app for you. There are plenty of options out there, each with its unique features. Sunsama, for instance, seamlessly integrates timeboxing into its user interface itself, making it great for mindful planning. Meanwhile, Clockify and Trello have excellent time-tracking capabilities. Try out a few and see which one resonates with your workflow.

Step 2: Set Your Timeboxes

Once you’ve chosen your app, it’s time to start setting your timeboxes. Estimate how long each task on your to-do list will take, and assign a specific time slot. Remember, the goal isn’t to finish the task within the timebox but to make progress.

Step 3: Use a Timer

Most timeboxing apps come with built-in timers. Use them! They’ll help you stay on track and alert you when switching tasks is time. This is crucial to avoid overworking and burnout.

Step 4: Take Breaks

Remember to schedule breaks. Your brain needs downtime between work hours to recharge and maintain peak performance. A popular method is the Pomodoro Technique, where you work for 25 minutes and then take a 5-minute break.

Step 5: Review and Adjust

At the end of each day or week, take some time to review your progress. Did you underestimate how long specific tasks would take? Did you spend too much time on low-priority tasks? Use these insights to adjust your future timeboxes.

But while timeboxing apps can be powerful tools, they’re not magic bullets. Here are a few pitfalls to avoid:

  1. Over-Scheduling: Don’t pack your schedule so tightly that there’s no room for unexpected issues or downtime. Flexibility is key.

  2. Skipping Breaks: It’s tempting to power through and skip breaks, but this can lead to burnout. Regular breaks are essential for maintaining productivity.

  3. Ignoring Your Natural Rhythms: Are you a morning person or a night owl? Schedule your most important tasks during your peak productivity periods.

The future of Timeboxing Apps

One of the most exciting developments in the tech world right now is the rise of AI and machine learning. These technologies are already transforming various sectors, from healthcare to finance. But how could they enhance timeboxing apps?

These apps will help you schedule your tasks but also learns from your habits and preferences. It knows when you’re most productive, which tasks take you longer than expected, and can prioritize tasks, even when you’re likely to procrastinate. And it uses this information to create a personalized, optimized schedule for you.

AI could also enhance the reporting task management features of these apps. Right now, most apps can tell you where your time is going. But in the future, they could provide deeper insights. For instance, they could analyze your productivity patterns over time and identify trends. They could tell you that you’re most productive on Tuesday mornings or that you tend to spend too much time on emails. This kind of data-driven insight could help you make more informed decisions about how you spend your time.

But it’s not just AI and machine learning that could shape the future of timeboxing apps. Other technologies could play a part too. For instance, virtual reality could offer immersive experiences that help you stay focused. And as more people work remotely, integration with other tools will become increasingly important.

So, what does all this mean for you and me? It means that as technology continues to evolve, so will our ability to manage our time effectively. The future of timeboxing apps looks bright, and I, for one, am excited to see where it takes us.

Make time your ally with Timeboxing Apps

So, what’s the bottom line here? We’ve travelled through the world of timeboxing apps together, understanding their key features here, exploring how to use them effectively and considering what the future might hold. But let’s circle back to why you’re here: can timeboxing apps really help you, a busy professional, achieve your objectives?

The answer is a resounding yes.

Timeboxing apps tools that can help you take control of your most valuable resource – time. By breaking down your tasks into manageable chunks, these apps can help you stay focused, reduce overwhelm, and increase productivity.

These tools don’t just tell you where your time is going; they help you direct drag and drop it where you want it to go. They empower you to be proactive rather than reactive, to work smarter, not harder. And that’s a game-changer.

So, my final piece of advice? Give timeboxing apps a try. Whether you choose Sunsama, Motion, or any other time tracking app, the key is to find a tool that resonates with your workflow.

Because here’s the thing: time waits for no one. But with the right tools and strategies, you can make it your ally. Get better at managing your time and watch as your productivity soars, your stress levels drop, and your goals come within reach.