Studying for long sessions is becoming harder by the day as the number of distractions we encounter continues to increase. These distractions make it harder to stay focused and if you use a browser while studying, then you will know only too well the temptation of checking your social media profile for a few minutes.
Before you know it, three or four hours have gone by. If you want to concentrate and study for longer and without interruptions, you have to find a way to block different websites. Here are a few ways to help you do exactly that.
Using In-Built Parental Controls
Many people know that parental controls can be used to block content that you do not want your kids to see. What many people do not realize is that parental controls can also be used to block websites that you do not want to visit while studying. Both macOS and Windows have built-in parental control software, which can be configured to block different websites.
When setting up parental controls in Windows, you have to create a child’s profile. This is done by going to settings and clicking Accounts. Once this is done, go to the Microsoft account page, select Web Browsing and you will see the relevant sections for allowing only certain websites. Here, you can set websites that will always be blocked and ones that will always be allowed.
For macOS, you need to go to System Preferences and configure the right settings under Parental Controls. Here, you can also create a separate account that you can use when you want to study. Once you log in to this account, all the websites you have blocked under Parental Controls will be blocked by default.
Using Parental Control Software
If you want even more control or don’t want to set up separate child accounts on your computer, the next best option is to use parental control software. There are lots of different options for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS.
The only difference is the amount of control they give you, how intuitive they are to use, and the reports they send you. For example, some parental control software will tell you how many times a website you tried to visit was blocked so that you can see how many times you get distracted during your study sessions.
Parental control software also has the benefit of blocking websites on all browsers on your computer so you do not have to configure settings for each browser separately.
Use a Browser Extension
Here, you can install the relevant website blocking extension for your browser. The good news is that most browsers use Chromium, the engine that Google Chrome uses. This means you can use website blocking extensions that help you stay focused from the Chrome Store on any chrome-based browser. Some exceptions include Firefox and Opera, both of which have their own add-ons stores.
Configuring these extensions is almost always the same. Just ensure you blacklist the relevant websites and that you can stop blocking them once you are done studying or need to use them again.
Configure Your Router Settings
Blocking specific websites using an account or an extension does not always work as expected and can take a lot of time to set up. Fortunately, you can block the websites you want to for all accounts, on all browsers easily. This is done by configuring your router. Although all router settings and configurations can vary slightly, the process is the same if you can find the relevant tabs.
Start by opening your router’s web interface with the address provided to you on its manual. Next, you need to log in using your username and password. Then, navigate to the security tab usually called Content Filtering or Access Restrictions. Once you do this, you need to add all the websites you want to block and save and apply the settings.
Use an Ad Blocker
Ad Blockers are primarily used to block ads on your browsers. If you use a primary browser and do not want to fiddle with a lot of settings or install additional software, they are also a great option for blocking the websites you do not want to visit.
Most ad blockers let you add websites to their blacklists. When you try to visit the websites, you will be redirected to another website or blocked from visiting any websites depending on how you have set everything up.
Many ad blockers allow you to add and remove websites from your blacklist without any restriction and at any time, which is why they are not as good as using software, browser extensions, or reconfiguring your router. That said, if you have the willpower, they can be an invaluable tool to help you concentrate and study for longer.
There are many different ways of blocking the websites you do not want to visit while studying. The method you use will depend on how comfortable you are configuring different things as well as how easy you want it to be to add and remove websites from the list of websites you do or do not want access to.