Background That Tracks
RescueTime has been a part of my working life For more than 6 decades, but I have never sat down to compose a RescueTime inspection until a few months ago. That Tracks
A Couple of months ago declared my first full year of self-employment. I took the time to my tools and working processes to make sure I had a good moment balance among my priorities.
After all — if You’re paid Your time is your only non-renewable resource. It should become your time if you’re going to handle anything.
Since nearly all of my professional priorities are on A pc — time management software (ie, RescueTime) is a core component of that.
Here is my RescueTime review with pros use Instances and next steps based on my expertise.
What Is RescueTime?
RescueTime is a time direction & Productivity software company founded in 2008. The RescueTime program runs in the background of your devices measuring monitoring and automatically categorizing your own activity.
RescueTime is a free app with a premium upgrade That allows more reporting and features like time input that is offline . It delivers a reporting dashboard with your information diced, sliced and sorted into graphs that will assist you manage your own time.
The program relies on Peter Drucker’s (the famous Management advisor ) maxim that”what gets measured, gets managed.”
RescueTime requires the tracking of time And makes it painless and automatic you truly track your own time so that .
That said, there are dozens and dozens of Improvement & time management programs on the Internet. What are the real pros & cons of RescueTime? Here is what I’ve noticed over the years.
Disclosure — I receive referral fees Mentioned on this site. Any data or remarks are all based on my expertise as a customer or consultant to a client. That Tracks
Rescuing Your Period
RescumeTime is a productivity tool at the, to reiterate Feel that it helps your skills improve. It gathers data about the apps and websites you use, then generates reports based on that info.
You set up a and create an account to Begin Desktop app in your computer(s) and optionally a mobile app on Android devices. There is no iOS app because the operating system prevents RescueTime from amassing the information it needs to perform its function. Those apps quietly and invisibly track which programs you use and which sites you visit, as well as the quantity of time spent on them.
The tough nut to crack is how to make sense of all that information. To get the best results, you have to customize your account from the RescueTime site and inform the program more about what you consider productive versus unproductive activity. The more you fine-tune it to your specific circumstances, the better your results. For instance, somebody who works in the financing industry might classify reading financial news on web sites including MarketWatch and FT.com as a productivity task, whereas for me, that’s an unproductive use of time.
You can categorize website and every app on a 5-point Scale of quite effective, productive, impartial, unproductive, and very unproductive. You can also categorize activity into work categorizes. By way of instance, I record Google Docs as quite productive, and that I categorized it as Writing, which will be a subcategory of Design and Composition. Looking at Redfin.com is quite distracting when I am trying to work, and I’ve categorized it as such.
In the desktop app, there is a simple set of controls That lets you pause RescueTime for a quarter hour, one hour, or until tomorrow, providing you easy access to switching the program off for days or breaks once you wrap up early.
When faced with RescueTime’s proposition–We’ll track Everything you do and give you insights about your habits! –some individuals may, justifiably, be worried about their privacy and the safety of information in their own hardware. If you work with sensitive information online or keep sensitive information in your own computers and mobile devices, you’ll want to read RescueTime’s privacy and safety statements carefully.
If your concerns are somewhat more relaxed and You Just Don’t Want RescueTime tracking you on the weekend, so you have control over the times and days the program monitors your behaviour. You can easily set it to only watch your action from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, or whatever schedule suits you.
I’ve used RescueTime for decades, and that I do not check my Productivity reports. I love to let the service run in the background so that when I do want to get a better image of how I have been spending my time, a good quantity of information is waiting for me.
While I do go through the reports, however, they’re Magnificent. I really like the variety, giving you get multiple methods of understanding your productivity and customs, from bar charts and pie graphs that show lump amounts of action, to line items of applications you employed.
1 simple but powerful piece of advice RescueTime Supplies is an investigation of when during the daytime you tend to be the most successful. I was not surprised to observe that my mind peaks in the morning and slacks off after 2:00 p.m., as that matches fairly well with what I understand about my habits. If you have never analyzed your productivity, nevertheless, that might be a beneficial revelation for you, one which might help you schedule your times more .
The longer you use RescueTime Premium, the more useful the Data becomes, because you may view your statistics daily, week, month, or year. And as you might expect, you can toggle which days and times RescueTime records your activity so it turns off automatically on weekends, for instance. That Tracks
Much of the value you get from RescueTime comes from what You make of the information and the way you use that data to influence your own behavior. Changing behaviour is tough, but getting rich insights doesn’t need to be.
One of those manners RescueTime makes it easy to understand how To interpret all of the information that it collects is using a Productivity Pulse score. This daily score, shown as a percent, comes from calculating the percentage of time spent on very productive, productive, neutral, unproductive, and incredibly unproductive tasks. To be clear, nobody is advocating you target to get a 100 percent Productivity Pulse score.
A RescueTime blog article explaining the productivity Score notes that the score is 67 percent, and the in-house average is 79 percent. Most people want to do some job which is not considered”very productive” throughout their day. The whole point of using RescueTime will be to help you figure out how to focus on productive and incredibly productive tasks if you will need to and possibly save less productive tasks for times as soon as your ability to focus has been waning anyway.
Jobs that are productive are not the Exact Same thing as distractions. RescueTime has a smart and simple feature for curbing unwanted behavior, such as getting sucked into deflecting websites, too. A feature named FocusTime, when empowered, blocks your ability to access websites for a period of time you specify. It requires a little setup and customization, but it’s quite powerful, once it is ready to set up. For example, let us say you want to to finish a record, and also to make progress on it, you need to focus hardcore for the next 30 minutes. It can prevent you from taking a look posting on Twitter, checking sports scores, or whatever other sites and activities, and switch FocusTime you deem distracting.
The RescueTime mobile app has a setting that will Silence your phone whenever you enable FocusTime. Likewise, you can set up other automation with the help of third-party providers IFTTTFree in iTunes Store and Zapier to obstruct or silence other distractions. By way of instance, you may make a rule using IFTTT (it stands for”if this, then that”) that states,”When I enable FocusTime, then automatically set my Slack standing to busy.”
RescueTime also gives you the Choice to log time pc Idle time. Whenever RescueTime notices the computer has been idle for several minutes in a row, so it pops up a dialogue asking if you were at a meeting, on the telephone, taking break, and so on, and permits you to classify the idle time accordingly.
Advantages of RescueTime
Here is some of the advantages of using RescueTime Over solutions. That Tracks
At its core, RescueTime does something — monitor time. It is not special, When you look at it like this. Technically, you can do some of the dozens of programs that are free or this using a spreadsheet online.
But RescueTime’s feature set is special because of The way that it tracks time and exactly what it does with all the data (aka, one you’ll actually use).
RescueTime watches which windows currently have Action, looks at times, and the window name the action in this window. It is constantly running in the background watching.
Unobtrustive, Automated tracking that is 100% makes RescueTime worthwhile. There’s not any friction or barrier to tracking time.
Since RescueTime’s monitoring feature simplifies that Problem, you’ll have data that is complete, correct & useful.
RescueTime’s other features focus on making their Core attribute better. They don’t attempt to add on features that are complementary like time-tracking & charging for freelancers. They do not try to enter any side businesses.
They do have a few features that use the tracking Attribute in an interesting way. For example, the Get Focused! Feature blocks distracting sites and/or programs when chosen from running.
They have alerts and goals that Permit You to decide What when X occurs, you want to occur — and RescueTime will do that based on which it’s tracking.
I also love how RescueTime does Offline Time Tracking. Instead of being required to search and put in it in 100% manually, you pick a time period that is unlogged and fill in the blank.
You can also customize the buttons to create logging Offline time quick and simple.
It’s a feature set — but that is exactly What makes it great. It is straightforward, easy and well-done.
Pricing and Plans
RescueTime offers two tiers of service: Lite (free) and Premium ($9 per month or $72 per year). Businesses or organizations that want to utilize RescueTime across a bunch of people pay the exact same rate.
RescueTime Lite offers plenty for someone who has never Tracked his or her time before. The app monitors which websites and programs you use, and also how long spent in or on each of these. You can categorize each program and website you use on a Productive/Unproductive scale, also RescueTime creates a couple of primary reports showing the best way to spend your time. Lite members can place weekly goals, such as”spend X hours per week on productive tasks and fewer than Y minutes on unproductive items.” You can find a report email for you. For reports, you’re confined to a history, however.
Paying subscribers get everything from the Lite plan that is free, Plus reports and extra features, including an unlimited report history. Premium comes with alerts you can empower for if you hit on objectives. You can more correctly log time spent away from the computer, noting if you were in a meeting, on a telephone call, or just out to dinner. Furthermore, there is a Get Focused alternative, which permits you to block distracting websites for a period of time you set. That Tracks
Comparing RescueTime’s cost to that of other apps Requires an open mind as programs do precisely what RescueTime does. Qbserve is among the apps you may find, and it charges a level fee of $40.
We can, but look at traditional time-tracking Apps for freelancers who include tools for invoices. HarvestFree in Harvest is a example. At $12 per individual a month for Premium, it costs over RescueTime, but it has a very clear return on investment since it helps ensure more accurate billing. How you’ll interpret RescueTime’s reports and make better use of your time as a result is much less clear.
Toggl Popular among salespeople, prices $9 a month, and it also gives you definite tools for monitoring time spent on projects with billing clients’ end aim. Toggl does not include its own invoicing tools, but it has integration options for linking with invoicing services.
A Couple of programs are nearer to RescueTime in what they have to Offer, such as Slife, although they tend to have fewer features even if they’re free (and Slife is).
Either way — RescueTime is a no-brainer pricing-wise. It is totally free to use.
And when you are saved by the attributes only One hour per month it’s paid for itself even if you are simply making US minimum wage.
RescueTime is an investment which makes sense.
A common problem with monitoring programs of all kinds is That they always must be on. The”always on” attribute can cause performance issues on laptops & desktop computers. Battery problems can be caused by it .
But in my own experience, RescueTime induces neither. It is running on my Windows PC, my Macbook Pro, and also my Nexus 5x mobile phone from startup. I have never monitored any battery or functionality issues.
It is lightweight and well-built.
I enjoy the fact that the app doesn’t demand Dozens of ridiculous permissions. It requires access to usage data, but does not try to track contacts, location, emails, or any of the privacy violating apps that are permissions request.
It’s quick to set up and syncs using an internet dashboard. It pulls in data from all sources and crunches on the information quickly if you’re on the Premium plan or from next day to the plan.
What is the purpose of data if it can’t be interpreted by you ? That Tracks
RescueTime’s accounts solves that issue — and in Many ways is the purpose of using the app over a spreadsheet.
RescueTime’s Dashboard uses colorful bar charts and Pie graphs to reveal just what you are (and are not) doing.
You can opt to receive reports Daily, Week or month.
And best of all, you can dig deep to the Reporting with filters and overlays to find out your customs.
It is really eye-opening to determine that the amount of Time that each job happens.
When I working for a marketing agency in Atlanta — The time tracked to Instant Messages and Gchats was astonishing. It changed processes not just for me personally, but also my job supervisors.
Now that I’m on my own — I can see the precise time that I devote to tasks that matter. I can build .
And just to reiterate — all of the reports are Built-in to the software. The Dashboard is on my default — and even advanced reports are pre-built.
It’s all seamless, quick and effective so that you When assessing your time, aren’t ironically wasting time.
Among the key selling points of RescueTime is their characteristic set minimalism. They do something and they do it well.
That said — many all people using their product Have applications needs that are time-based. Whether it’s team time tracking, charging, project management or anything your time demands usually do not cease with measuring, tracking and categorization.
To resolve that problem, RescueTime’s applications Integrates with a assortment of applications. They have integrations and an API with software that is common.
Whether you are Time monitoring into invoicing software like FreshBooks or even a job manager that needs to collate staff member’s time, RescueTime will integrate with this.
Cons of RescueTime
Like any applications RescueTime is Perfect nor can it be the best fit for everyone. Here is some disadvantages that I’ve noticed over time. That Tracks
Default Get Focused! Groups
Generally, RescueTime’s categories good. Sites like Reddit, Facebook and Twitter are”Very Distracting”…for many people. And for monitoring, RescueTime’s categories are fast & simple to fix.
But RescueTime’s categories News, research websites and deflecting sites’ subdomains.
I can’t use the Get Focused! Performance for any Task which requires research (aka visiting a lot of different websites).
Paradoxically, the time that I need smart blocking Performance is when I am doing research for a post
There is a fine line between this is productive and When I’m researching this is distracting. It’d be great to use RescueTime, but the classes are not accurate enough for it to work.
The root issue is the Block Sites function Is unavailable in reverse (ie, add certain sites to block). I can only add websites to unblock.
And if I am visiting several dozen blocked websites — Adding them becomes the time wasting.
If You’re Looking for an app that will block only Specific sites — RescueTime isn’t it.
Effectiveness vs. Efficiency
RescueTime (or some time management applications ) Heightens the prejudice towards efficiency .
If you do the wrong thing for 18 hours per day, Daily with perfect focus — you are doing the thing that is incorrect.
The most important Element in time direction is to Work on the things that are ideal .
And that’s a element that is 100% on you. RescueTime Can’t solve that problem.
In some ways, in fact, RescueTime can damage your By pushing you towards doing over research strategy and planning efforts.
If effectiveness is your core issue, then RescueTime isn’t for you. It will only make matters worse.
I’d recommend reading some of them books.
RescueTime has been an invaluable tool for me personally. It’s not for everyone and has some feature quirks and disadvantages.
Nevertheless, the best thing it’s provided is perspective. It’s easy to think that you”work a ton” or are”not addicted to your phone” or”spend so much time writing” or are”hardly ever on Facebook.”
However, the data doesn’t lie. And utilizing RescueTime to Get accurate time data onto your digital time can assist your own time is literally rescued by you and place your life in perspective. That Tracks