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Focus Bear Vs RescueTime: Which is Better For Managing Your Time?

Sep 4, 2022
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Table of Contents

Struggling to be productive? Whether it is about living your best work-life or wanting to stay ahead of the tasks that you have mentally assigned, you can not deny the fact that there are too many distractions around us. Productivity apps can help you with that. That said, the search for the ultimate productivity tool can be a distraction in itself. This article will help shortcut research into tools, honing into two: Focus Bear and RescueTime.

Focus Bear

The first productivity and time management app of this discussion is Focus Bear. Focus Bear has several goals:

  1. Get you into deep work by eliminating distractions across all your devices
  2. Help you build healthy habits (e.g. meditate in the morning)
  3. Enforce healthy breaks (stand up and stretch every 20 minutes)
  4. Track how much time you spend in deep work
  5. Track any other metrics of your choice (mood, energy levels, sleep, number of pushups)

Deep Work

When you’ve got something difficult to do, the last thing you want is to get distracted halfway through. It’s really hard to get back into the flow. For that reason, Focus Bear has a focus mode feature that keeps you on track.

If you impulsively try to check Facebook, the app will leap in and remind you of your commitment.

You decide what apps and websites are considered productive. You probably have different types of work that require different types of focus. For example, if you’re doing social media marketing, Facebook may be productive but the rest of the time, it is definitely not.

Active Breaks

All that productivity can come at a cost. No-one likes a screen headache or a sore neck due to bad posture. Focus Bear also encourages you to take productivity-boosting breaks. For example, every 20 minutes, the app can remind you to stand up and stretch or do some pullups. It’s not just a gentle push notification either — it takes over your whole screen so you really get the message. Don’t worry though, it can tell if you’re in a meeting (based on your camera/microphone being turned on) and won’t interrupt you’re on a call.

You decide what the break activities are. If you’re in an office environment and pullups aren’t appropriate, some chair based stretching and deep breathing exercises are the way to go.

If you really can’t do the break right now, you’ve got an option to postpone by 5 minutes but Focus Bear will ask you to reflect on whether you really need to do that.

Healthy Habits

As well as amping up your productivity, Focus Bear also helps you stick to your morning routine. At the start of the day, Focus Bear will guide you through your morning routine. Instead of lying in bed scrolling through instagram or work emails, you’ll find yourself doing a meditation session, waking up your body with exercise and reviewing your schedule for an awesome day ahead.

The habits are entirely customisable and you can pull in habit templates from people you admire.

At the end of your work day, Focus Bear will guide you through your evening routine and then switch off non-essential apps on your devices so you can wind down, spend time with loved ones and have a good night’s sleep.

Tracking deep work

Because Focus Bear blocks distractions, you know that every focus block you complete represents time spent in deep work. At the end of the day, you can look back at your completed focus blocks and see how you went:

Tracking other metrics

You can also use Focus Bear to track other metrics. For example, after doing 30 seconds of pushups, you can log how many you completed. It’s also useful for tracking other metrics like your mood and energy levels.

The app shows you your progress over time:


As the name suggests, this time management software will allow you to rescue the time that you would normally lose to distractions. It will offer you personal daily Focus Work goals and allow you to automatically track your time.

The app will even offer guidance when you are working. It will track the task you are working on and let you know the best times for carrying out uninterrupted work. Likewise, it will alert you when you are losing focus.

Rescue Time also has Focus Sessions which are similar to Focus Blocks in Focus Bear. When you start a Focus Session, Rescue Time will block distractions. One of the philosophical differences in the apps is that with Rescue Time you have to tell the app which URLs are distracting for you. For some people, this can be a very long and malleable list. Focus Bear takes an alternative approach where it presumes that the internet is a distracting place and only allows websites that you know are productive for the particular type of work. For people who are prone to distractions, Rescue Time’s philosophy may not be optimal.

That said, Rescue Time really shines when it comes to activity tracking. Whereas Focus Bear will give you a coarse metric of how many focus blocks you’ve completed, Rescue Time is much more granular and can tell you how much time you’ve spent on a particular website or app. This is very handy if you’re a freelancer and switch between client projects all the time — your time logs are taken care of automatically.

Which one is best?

The apps are actually quite complementary. Focus Bear shines in keeping you energised, focused and mentally well. RescueTime is an excellent addition if you need detailed time logs.

To try out the apps, visit and

Sep 4, 2022

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