RescueTime has been part of my life For at least 6 years, but I have never sat down to write a RescueTime inspection until just a few months ago. Trello
A Couple of months ago marked my first year of self-employment. I took the opportunity to my tools and working procedures to make sure I had a solid moment equilibrium among my own priorities.
After all — whether You’re paid hourly or not, Your time is the only non-renewable resource. It should be your time, if you’re likely to manage anything.
Since nearly all my professional priorities are on A computer — time management software (ie, RescueTime) is a core part of that.
Here’s my RescueTime review with pros use Cases and following steps based on my expertise.
What Is RescueTime?
RescueTime is a time direction & Productivity software firm founded in 2008. The RescueTime app runs in the background of your apparatus tracking, measuring and automatically categorizing your activity.
RescueTime is a free app with a premium update That enables attributes and more special reporting like time input that is offline signal. It delivers a reporting dashboard with all your data diced sliced and sorted into graphs to assist you manage your own time.
The app relies on Peter Drucker’s (the famous Management advisor ) maxim that”what gets measured, gets managed.”
RescueTime takes time’s manual tracking So that you truly track your own time so that and makes it automatic and painless .
Nevertheless, there are dozens and dozens of Improvement & time management tools online. What are the real pros & cons of RescueTime? Here is what I’ve noticed through the years.
Disclosure — I receive referral fees Mentioned on this site. Any data and/or remarks are all based on my experience as a paying client or consultant to a paying customer. Trello
Rescuing Your Period
To reiterate, RescumeTime is a productivity tool at the Sense that it helps you improve your time-management abilities. It gathers data about the programs and websites you use, then creates reports based on that info.
You create an account and set up a to Begin Desktop app on your own computer(s) and a cell program on Android apparatus ) There’s no iOS program because the operating system prevents RescueTime from collecting the information it needs to perform its function. Those programs quietly and invisibly monitor which apps you use and which websites you visit, as well as the quantity of time spent on these.
The hard nut to crack is how to make sense of all that information. To get the best results, you must customize your accounts from the RescueTime website and inform the app more about what you consider productive versus unproductive action. The more you fine-tune it to your specific circumstances, the better your results. For instance, somebody who operates in the financing industry may classify reading financial news on sites including MarketWatch and FT.com as a productivity task, whereas for me, that’s an unproductive use of time.
You can categorize site and every program on a 5-point Scale of very effective, productive, impartial, dependable, and incredibly unproductive. You can also categorize action into work categorizes. By way of instance, I record Google Docs as quite productive, and that I categorized it as Writing, and it is a subcategory of Layout and Composition. Looking at Redfin.com is very distracting when I am trying to work, and I’ve categorized it .
In the desktop program, there is an easy set of controllers That allows you to pause RescueTime for a quarter hour, one hour, or till tomorrow, providing you easy access to shifting the program off for breaks or days once you wrap up early.
When faced with RescueTime’s proposition–We’ll monitor All you do and give you insights about your habits! –some individuals might, justifiably, be worried about their privacy and the security of information in their own hardware. Should you work with sensitive info online or store sensitive information on your computers and mobile devices, you are going to want to browse RescueTime’s privacy and security statements closely.
If your concerns are somewhat more relaxed and you simply don’t Want RescueTime tracking you on the weekend, you’ve got control over the days and times the program monitors your behavior. It is simple to set it to just watch your activity from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, or whatever schedule suits you.
I’ve used RescueTime for years, and I don’t check my Daily, productivity reports. I like to let the service run in the background so that when I really do want to find a better picture of how I’ve been spending my time, a fantastic quantity of information is awaiting me.
When I do go through the reports, however, they’re Magnificent. I love the variety, providing you get multiple ways of knowing your productivity and habits, from bar graphs and pie graphs that show lump amounts of action, to line items of software you used.
1 simple but effective piece of information RescueTime Supplies is an analysis of when during the day you tend to be the most productive. I wasn’t surprised to see that my brain peaks in the morning and slacks off after 2:00 p.m., as that matches fairly well with everything I know about my habits. If you’ve never analyzed your productivity, nevertheless, that may be a useful revelation for you, one that might help you schedule your days more .
The more time you use RescueTime Premium, the more useful the Data becomes, because you may view your data by day, week, month, or year. And as you might expect, it is possible to toggle that times and days RescueTime records your action so that it works automatically on weekends, for example. Trello
Much of the value you get from RescueTime comes from what You make of the data and the way you use that data to influence your behavior. Changing behaviour is tough, but getting rich insights does not need to be.
One of those ways RescueTime makes it easy to understand how To interpret all the information that it collects is with a Productivity Pulse score. This daily score, shown as a percent, comes from calculating the percentage of time spent on very productive, effective, neutral, unproductive, and incredibly unproductive tasks. To be clear, nobody is advocating you target for a 100 percent Productivity Pulse score.
A RescueTime blog article describing the productivity Score notes that the average score is 67 percent, and the average is 79 percent. The majority of people need to do some work which is not considered”very productive” during daily. The whole purpose of using RescueTime will be to help you figure out how to focus on productive and very productive tasks if you will need to and possibly save productive activities for times when your ability to concentrate has been waning anyway.
Productive tasks are not exactly the same thing as distractions. RescueTime has a simple and smart feature for curbing behavior, like getting sucked into sites that are distracting , too. A feature named FocusTime, when empowered, blocks your ability to access. It customization and requires a little setting up, but it is quite powerful once it is ready to set up. As an example, let’s say you wish to finish a record, and to make progress on it, you need to concentrate hardcore for the next thirty minutes. It may block you from taking a look posting on Twitter, checking sports scores, or whatever other sites and activities, and switch on FocusTime you deem distracting.
The RescueTime mobile app has a setting which will Automatically silence your phone you empower FocusTime. Likewise, you can set up other automation with the support of third-party services IFTTTFree at iTunes Store and Zapier to block or silence additional distractions. By way of example, you can make a rule with IFTTT (it stands for”if this, then that”) that says,”When I empower FocusTime, then mechanically set my Slack status to busy.”
RescueTime also gives you the option Idle moment. Any time RescueTime notices the computer has been idle for several minutes in a row, it pops up a dialog asking if you were at a meeting, on the telephone, taking break, etc, and permits you to classify the idle time accordingly.
Advantages of RescueTime
Here’s some of the advantages of utilizing RescueTime Over solutions. Trello
At its heart, RescueTime does something — track time. When you look at it like this, it’s not super unique. Technically, you could do this using a spreadsheet or some of those dozens of apps online.
But RescueTime’s attribute set is unique because of How it tracks time and exactly what it does with the information (aka, one you’ll actually use).
RescueTime watches which windows currently have Action, looks at times, and the window title the action in that window. It is constantly running in the background watching.
Unobtrustive, automatic monitoring that is 100% makes RescueTime rewarding. There is not any friction or barrier to tracking time.
Since RescueTime’s monitoring feature solves that Problem, you will have data that’s complete, correct & useful.
RescueTime’s other features focus on making their Core attribute. Like time-tracking & billing for 15, they don’t try to include on characteristics that are complementary. They don’t attempt to get into any side companies.
They do have Feature in an intriguing manner. The Get Focused! When chosen from running feature blocks programs.
They have aims and alarms that allow you to pick What you want to happen when X occurs — and RescueTime can do this based on which it’s monitoring.
I love how RescueTime does Offline Time Tracking. Rather than having to search and add it in 100% manually, you select a time interval that is unlogged and fill in the blank.
You can even customize the buttons to make logging Offline time quick and easy.
It is a minimalist feature but that What makes it great. It is well-done, simple and easy.
Pricing and Strategies
RescueTime offers two tiers of service: Lite (free) and Premium ($9 a month or $72 per year). Firms or organizations that are looking to utilize RescueTime across a bunch of individuals pay the exact same speed.
RescueTime Lite offers Tracked his or her time. The program monitors which websites and programs you use, and how long you spend in or on every one of them. You can categorize each program and site you are using on a Productive/Unproductive scale, and RescueTime creates a couple of primary reports showing how you spend your own time. Lite members can set weekly goals, such as”spend hours per week on productive jobs and fewer than Y moments on faulty items.” It’s possible to find a weekly report email. For reports, you’re limited to some history, nevertheless.
Paying subscribers get everything from the Lite plan that is free, Plus reports and features, including an report history. Premium comes with alarms you can empower for when you reach goals. You can more accurately log time spent away from the computer, noting whether you were in a meeting, on a phone call, or simply out to dinner. There is a Get Focused alternative, which lets you block deflecting websites you set. Trello
Comparing RescueTime’s price to that of other apps Needs an open mind because few apps do precisely what RescueTime does. Qbserve is one of the very similar apps you may find, and it charges a flat one-time fee of $40.
We could, but look at more Apps for freelancers who typically contain tools for bills. HarvestFree in Harvest is an adequate example. At $12 per person per month for Premium, it costs over RescueTime, but it has a clear return on investment because it helps ensure more accurate charging. How you will translate RescueTime’s reports and make better use of your time as a result is not as clear.
Another traditional app that is, toggl Popular among freelancers, costs $9 per month, and it provides you tools for tracking time spent on jobs with billing clients’ usual end goal. Toggl does not contain its own invoicing tools, but it has many integration options for linking with invoicing services.
A Couple of programs are closer to RescueTime in what they have to Provide, for example Slife, even though they tend to have fewer features even if they are free (and Slife is).
Either way — RescueTime is a no-brainer pricing-wise. It’s free to use.
And when the reporting/advanced features save you only One hour per month then it is paid for itself even if you are making US minimum wage.
RescueTime is an investment which makes sense.
A Frequent problem with monitoring apps of all kinds is That they have to be on. The”always on” attribute can cause performance issues on notebooks & desktop computers. Battery problems can be caused by it .
But in my own experience, RescueTime causes neither. It’s running in my Windows PC my Macbook Pro, and my Nexus 5x phone from startup. I have never monitored any battery or functionality issues.
It is lightweight and well-built.
I enjoy the fact that the cellular app does not demand Dozens of permissions. It requires access but does not try to monitor contacts, location, emails, or some of those privacy violating apps that are permissions ask for.
It is quick to install and syncs with an online dashboard. It crunches the information quickly if you’re on the Premium program or by next day on the free plan, and pulls in precisely the exact same time.
What’s the point of information if you can not interpret it Or place it to use? Trello
RescueTime’s reports solves that problem — and in Many ways is the whole purpose of working with the app above a spreadsheet.
RescueTime’s Dashboard uses vibrant bar graphs and Pie charts to show just what you are (and are not) doing.
You can Choose to receive reports Daily, Week or month.
And best of all, you can dig deep into the Reporting with filters and overlays to find out your habits.
It is really eye-opening to determine that the amount of Time that each job takes.
When I working for a marketing agency in Atlanta — The time tracked to Gchats and Instant Messages was astounding. It altered my project supervisors personally, but also processes not just for me personally.
Now that I’m on my own — I will see the precise time I devote to jobs that matter. I can build around those.
And just to reiterate Built-in into the software. The Dashboard is really on my default — and innovative reports are pre-built.
It’s all effective, seamless and quick so that you While analyzing your time are currently wasting time.
One of the Major selling points of RescueTime is their characteristic set minimalism. They do one thing and they do it well.
That said — most all people using their merchandise Have time-based applications needs. Whether it’s staff time monitoring, charging, project management or anything your own time demands don’t stop with measuring, monitoring and categorization.
To solve that Issue, RescueTime’s software Integrates with a huge range. They’ve an open API and integrations with shared applications.
Whether you are Time tracking into invoicing applications like FreshBooks or even a job manager that needs to collate team member’s time, RescueTime will integrate with this.
Cons of RescueTime
Like any software RescueTime is Perfect nor can it be the best fit for everybody. Here is some pitfalls that I’ve noticed over the years. Trello
Default Get Focused! Groups
In general, RescueTime’s classes are fairly good. Websites like Reddit, Facebook and Twitter are”Very Distracting”…for most people. And for overall monitoring, RescueTime’s categories are fast & easy to repair.
But RescueTime’s classes can be away with general News, research sites and distracting sites’ subdomains.
I can’t use the Get Focused! Functionality for almost any Task which needs research (aka visiting a bunch of different websites).
The time I need smart blocking Functionality is when I’m doing research for a post
There is a fine line between which is effective and This really is distracting when I’m researching. It’d be good to use RescueTime, but the classes are not accurate enough for this to operate.
The root issue is that the Block Sites function Is not available in reverse (ie, add certain sites to block). I am only able to add websites to unblock.
And if I am visiting several dozen blocked sites — Manually adding them becomes time wasting.
If you are looking for an program that will block Specific distracting sites — RescueTime isn’t it.
Effectiveness vs. Efficiency
RescueTime (or any time management applications ) Heightens the prejudice towards efficiency .
If you do the wrong thing for 18 hours Every Day, Daily with focus that is perfect — you are still doing the wrong thing.
The most important Element in time management is to Work on the ideal things — the core 20% of time input which will generate 80 percent of your results.
And that’s a element that’s 100% on you. RescueTime Can not fix that issue.
In fact, in some ways, RescueTime can hurt your By pushing you towards efficient doing over research approach and planning efforts.
If effectiveness is the core issue, then RescueTime is not for you. It’ll only make things worse.
I’d recommend reading a few of them books.
RescueTime has been an invaluable tool for me personally. It’s not for everybody and has disadvantages and some feature quirks.
That said, the thing it’s provided is perspective. It’s easy to believe you just”work a ton” or are”not hooked on a telephone” or”spend so much time writing” or are”barely ever on Facebook.”
However, the information does not lie. And utilizing RescueTime to Get accurate time data on your time can assist you rescue your time and place your own life in perspective. Trello