The Internet is both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, it allows us to do our work and access the wealth of human knowledge. On the other hand, it distracts us from our goals and can even be dangerous for our children.
Possible restrictions on web access have been discussed for decades. How to block porn websites for our children? What does blocking websites like Facebook and YouTube mean for a modern workplace? Why we need to restrict ourselves with website blockers to resist temptations and distractions?
These are all valid questions, and we’ll address them below. We’ll also show you how to easily block websites that seem to steal your attention all day long.
Get an app to block websites
Install Setapp on Mac and improve your browsing experience. Or rather, improve it with Setapp by blocking websites that distract you.
Block websites on Mac
Restricting access to certain apps and websites has been a feature on both Windows and Mac for a long time. Surprisingly, however, most people are not aware of this option, or don’t use it because it seems too complicated.
Let’s start with how to use the "Parental Controls" on Mac can set. If you’ve used a similar feature called Family Safety on Windows before, the steps will sound familiar, but there are some key differences.
Block websites with parental controls
As the name suggests, the Parental Controls feature is designed to block all websites and apps on your Mac designed by Apple to allow parents to impose certain restrictions on their children, such as.B. access to adult websites, addictive games, endless video streaming, etc.
Recently, however, it’s not uncommon for employers to set up "parental controls" for their employees mostly to restrict social media use or to keep them from reading news websites all day long.
Regardless of why you want to set up parental controls, here’s how to do it:
- Go to System Preferences and open Parental Controls.
- If you already have an account set up that you want to restrict, simply select it from the list. If this is not the case, click to create a new user account and then continue.
- Fill in all the required information and click on "Create user".
Now you should see the full menu with apps, web, storage, time, privacy and other tabs. Take time to explore the different options and set the restrictions you think are appropriate. But let’s go through the most popular settings first.
To restrict your children’s contact with adult websites, go to the Web tab and select "Try to automatically restrict access to adult websites". Click "Customize, To enter websites you want your kids to visit at all times or never. If you don’t want your employees to waste their time on social media, you can also include these websites here.
If you only want to allow your children to visit a few websites altogether, select "Allow access only to these websites" And list the websites in the window below with the plus button.
To restrict specific apps, go to the "Apps" tab and check "Restrict programs. Now click in the "Allowed programs" window Click on the down arrow and select all the programs your kids are allowed to access.
When you’re done, simply click the padlock icon at the bottom left to save your settings. If you want to make sure your kids don’t bypass the settings, you can monitor your kids’ activity logs from time to time using the "Logs" menu in the bottom right corner of the Parental Control window Call.
It is still important to mention that this way you can block website in Chrome as well as Safari. Parental controls don’t discriminate between browsers, so settings work in Safari, Chrome, Firefox or any other browser you use.
Block websites effortlessly without changing any settings
Unfortunately, it must be said that parental control is a bit complicated. It takes a while to get all the settings just right. And every time your kids find a way around the restrictions, you’ll need to define new settings.
And what happens when you share the computer with your kids? Then you will have to log out and log back in every time you pass the laptop to someone else. Some of us just don’t need these complications and wish there was an easier way. Fortunately, there is the.
Discover Focus – a simple website blocker that blocks apps and specific websites for you, all right from your Mac’s menu bar.
Here’s how to block distractions with Focus:
- Click on the app icon in the menu bar> "Preferences
- Navigate to the "Blocking" tab
- Add any websites and apps you want using the plus icons at the bottom of the list. Done!
The beauty of Focus is that it doesn’t force focus mode all the time – it works in sessions, which is perfect for sharing the computer with your kids. So when your kids ask for some playtime, you can simply click on the app’s icon and select "Focus for 25 minutes" or "Custom focus". " to set the time period when websites should be blocked.
To prevent your children from changing the settings, simply go back to the preferences and check the "General" tab the "Hardcore mode. For additional security you can also use the "Password mode" turn on.
And if your children have their own computer? No problem. In the settings you can select "Schedule choose and set the time restrictions you want.
For more productive work: Eliminate distractions
Another great advantage of Focus is that it is useful not only for your children, but also for yourself. Don’t you sometimes wish you could block certain websites on your Mac? Turn off YouTube, eliminate Facebook, stay away from Reddit – Focus makes it easy for you to do so.
Just follow the same instructions we described above for your child: Block websites and apps, set a schedule that reflects your work hours, and lock down settings during sessions to minimize temptation.
We all know that it’s impossible to work with focus for eight hours at a time. In fact, taking small breaks throughout the day helps your productivity. With Focus, you can turn off the website blocker in pause mode for a small period of time.
The app is also ideal for followers of the Pomodoro Technique, where you automatically take a short break after an intense period of concentration. You can define your break times in the settings.
For additional motivation, you can create a quote in the app’s settings on the "Quotes" tab insert a list of your favorite motivational sayings and quotes. These quotes pop up when you try to access one of the blocked sites, reminding you to get back to the things that really matter.
Focus on the task at hand
Focus solves all your problems related to blocking time-consuming websites and apps. But the app can’t really help you focus on a single task amid your cluttered desktop and pile of open windows. This is where HazeOver comes in.
HazeOver is essentially a professional screen dimmer. While the app doesn’t offer a way to block websites on your Mac, it’s the perfect solution for your scattered focus. This app highlights the currently active window and dims the rest of the screen, including notifications and other apps.
HazeOver is quite simple to use, but allows you to fine tune each setting to your needs. If you go to the settings via the menu bar icon, you can decide how strong the dimming effect should be. You can put apps you don’t want to dim on a positive list, which is useful when you’re working with two windows at once. In addition, you can configure how the app should work on two or more screens.
What’s more, HazeOver is perfect for working at night because it only lets in the light from the active app window, rather than overwhelming you with a sea of blue light that makes it difficult to fall asleep later on. Similarly, it’s much more pleasant to watch a movie in the evening when HazeOver dims everything around the video app.
Use the right website blocker at the right time
Basically, if you’re used to tinkering with the complex settings in Family Safety on Windows or just like the granular level of control, using Parental Controls is certainly an option.
For the rest of us, Focus + HazeOver is a much more flexible solution – one that protects our children and keeps us on track at the same time.