Many of you know that I have a big exam coming up because I’ve mentioned it multiple times on Insta. And most of you who read this blog are students as well, so you’ll feel me when I say that studying can be a struggle sometimes.
I’ve noticed that since starting med school, I’m always studying, yet I almost always feel like I’m not really making any progress. Part of that is definitely because there’s just so much material to cover, but I think the other part is because I’m easily distracted by all the things that are way more fun than studying, including looking at my phone.
So, in order to discipline myself, I downloaded this app called Flora a while ago, and I find myself using it when the going really gets tough. The app allows you to set a timer for however long you want to focus, and then basically prohibits you from navigating away from the app’s timer page- so you can’t go to Facebook or Instagram, or text anyone, etc. You have to just stay on the app’s timer page until your timer runs out.
I usually just forget about this app until the few weeks before an exam, and then I use it religiously to make sure that I’m staying focused and productive, and honestly, it really works. When you stay focused for the duration of your timer, you ‘grow a tree’, and people in your contacts list who also use Flora can see when you ‘grow a tree’ and also how big your ‘garden’ is. When you navigate away from the app page for longer than 5 seconds, your tree ‘dies’ and people can see that as well. So there’s a social pressure aspect to the app, which makes it kind of fun.
This is how the timer page looks as it counts down:
And this is what happens if you navigate away from that page:
And then this is what happens if you don’t go back to the timer page immediately:
Also, if you want to, you can challenge yourself to stay focused for some time period by committing any amount of real money on the app. If you break the timer, you actually get charged that amount, and that money is used to plant real trees. You can also ‘grow trees’ with people. I think the whole thing is a cool concept, and the app has gotten pretty popular.
To make it more effective, though, I want you guys to download the app (it’s free) and to add me! I only have a few contacts who use the app, so I’m not really feeling much social pressure to grow more trees and log more productive time, which is why I think it would be a really neat way to connect with all of you! I’m going to start posting a passcode on my Instastories to ‘plant a tree’ with me. Multiple people can join, and then if anyone breaks the timer, the tree dies. I want more social pressure to be productive, so join Flora and let me know so that we can be friends and connect and be productive together! (I need to pass my upcoming exam so literally please force me to be productive..)
Edit: To add me on Flora, you have to add Sofia Etc on Facebook, and then I’ll come up in your Flora contacts. The profile photo for Sofia Etc should be the same as the one in my About Page!