Tech is a powerful tool but it can also be a major impediment for productivity. Fortunately, there are tools out there that allow you to control your own screen time on your Windows PC. All the tools and tips mentioned can also be used for a parent hoping to have better control over the number of hours their child is looking at a screen. In this article, I provide you with a guide on how to use the Cold Turkey Blocker Pro for your computer. Now, let’s get into it.
Cold Turkey Blocker Pro Features
Cold Turkey Blocker Pro allows you to do the following. 1. Create a custom block that includes games, websites, and Windows apps. 2. Schedule blockers to start automatically. 3. Use the Pomodoro technique with the blocker. 4. Set up allowances for the day. 5 Password protect your blocker so it cannot be changed by you. 6. No way of turning off the blocker or uninstalling it while a block is on.
Creating a Block
Step 1: To create a new block you will click on the block list tab on the left side of the window. Once you are on the block list page you will hit the green button in the top left part of your screen that says “Add new block list”
Step 2: Next, you will add whatever websites, apps, and games you want to have blocked to your list. Once that is done you can start the block or schedule the block. To add games you will click the apps tab in the edit block list menu. Then you click "browse" and then you will choose the games you want to block.
Step 3: To start a block manually go to the “Timers” tab on the left side of your screen. Then click the calendar icon to set up the time you want the block to be in place for. Lastly, click the “ON/OFF” button to start the timer.
Schedule a Block
If you want to schedule a block to occur every week at the same time you can do that by clicking the “Schedule” tab on the left side. Click the day and time of the week you would like to set the block for. Then, select the specific block you want to use.
The most useful feature that Cold Turkey Blocker Pro provides is the ability to create sprints. The way a sprint works is you select an amount of time you want to work (25 minutes is ideal) and then how long you will have a break (3-5 minutes is ideal). This is the Pomodoro method which is an extremely effective technique to improve efficiency and focus. To set up sprints you will click the settings tab on the left side. Then in the settings menu, you will click “Breaks”. Once you are on the “Breaks” page you will choose how many minutes you will work for and how many minutes you will have a break for. Once that is complete you can click your schedule block and select the sprint in the drop-down menu. You can also select the sprint when manually setting a block.
Creating Allowances (See Image Above)
Allowances are important to set up and work somewhat like Apple’s Screen Time. You can set up a daily allowance for how much time you can spend on a site, app or game. Unfortunately, allowances and sprints can’t be used at the same time on a single block. To create an allowance, go to the settings tab and select breaks. Then create an allowance time and apply that allowance to the block you wish to use it on.
Password Protect Your Blocks
Now that you have your blocks set up, it is going to be tempting to turn them off or remove sites, apps, and games you want to play from them. To safeguard against that, you can set a password for your blocks. Obviously this is not effective if you are setting the password for yourself, this is why I recommend you have someone else create it for you. For me I have my wife create the password, but you can get a friend, family member, or teacher to create it. To create a password you will go to the “settings” and then click the “passwords” tab. Then you type in the password and click set.
Lock Your Blocks
To lock your block you click the "Locking" tab in the Settings menu. Then you will turn on locks for your blocks.
Where to purchase and download Cold Turkey Blocker Pro
I highly recommend paying the ~$21.00 USD yearly fee. To purchase the product you can click the link.