Easy Win: Discover exactly how productive you are on the computer with this free app

by | May 6, 2013 | Time

The Takeaway: If you don’t track where your time on the computer goes, you could be wasting a lot of it. Let RescueTime help you out.

Estimated reading time: 1 minute, 16s.

If you don’t know how you’re spending your time on the computer, chances are you could be wasting a lot of it.


RescueTime is a free utility (for Mac or PC) that tracks exactly how you spend time on your computer. You simply sign up for the service, download the app, set it, forget it, and at the end of every week the service will send you an email saying exactly how productive you were. You can then log onto the company’s website to see detailed stats on precisely where your time went, and the service even presents you with a productivity score that shows you how productive you were (mine is 60%).

Above are a few screenshots of the service in action. And there isn’t a catch – if you want some fancier features (like the ability to block websites, and productivity alerts) you can pay $6 a month, but the free version of RescueTime should be more than enough for most people.

The app is light-weight, free, and totally worth installing (I’ve been using it for years). Highly recommended.

A note on stats: RescueTime is a great tool that will let you spot inefficiencies in your day, but unless you use the data to make measurable changes to how you work, the stats aren’t worth much. Stats are great, but they’re of course useless if you don’t do anything with them.

Written by Chris Bailey

Chris Bailey has written hundreds of articles on the subject of productivity and is the author of three books: How to Calm Your Mind, Hyperfocus, and The Productivity Project. His books have been published in more than 40 languages. Chris writes about productivity on this site and speaks to organizations around the globe on how they can become more productive without hating the process.

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