StayFocusd vs. KosmoTime – A StayFocusd Alternative

October 19, 2020  in 

Obvious point. The productivity scene is packed with more apps and tools than Jeff Bezos has mansions.


When it comes to distraction blocking, StayFocusd is a popular option. KosmoTime also provides distraction-blocking features, rendering it an appealing alternative to StayFocusd.


If you’re looking for a productivity tool that will help you get into the zone, shut out distractions, and stay focused, here’s a StayFocusd vs. KosmoTime review.

Tl;dr: I want to block distractions. What’s the bottom line?

  • If you’re looking for something that only limits your time on social media or other time-sucking apps, try StayFocusd.
  • If you’re looking for a comprehensive distraction blocking tool that both blocks distractions and gives you control over your calendar and tasks, then use KosmoTime.


Obviously, we recommend KosmoTime.


Let’s dive in, share some details, and even dabble in some productivity science.


What Is KosmoTime?

What is KosmoTime?

KosmoTime is an efficiency and productivity app that combines several features never before seen in the productivity app market.

Calendar Management

KosmoTime gives you total power over your schedule by allowing you to place your to-dos into your calendar, not just in an ever-growing, anxiety-inducing. It’s like god mode for your calendar.


Plow through your tasks without diminishing your mental strength. How? By batching related tasks into a calendar appointment.

Distraction Blocking

Not only can you define what you need to get done and when to do it, but you can also shut down distractions from the outside world. Boom.

One-click task creation

Don’t have time to go to your to-do list and type out yet another task? No problem. Just click the tab using KosmoTime’s chrome extension, and wham, it’s in your to do list in a single tap.


That’s just a sampling of KosmoTime’s features. There are more. And if you want to try it out, you can get it for free here.

What Is StayFocusd?

What is StayFocusd?


According to their entry in the Chrome Web Store:

StayFocusd increases your productivity by limiting the amount of time that you can spend on time-wasting websites.

stay focused screen grab

With over half a million users, StayFocusd is a free and relatively easy way to gain some outside help with self control.

Here’s the Dirty Little Truth About Focus

Apps like KosmoTime, StayFocusd, Freedom, Forest, RescueTime and others are helpful in gaining focused attention on tasks.


But focus is less about blocking distractions and more about motivation.


If you show up to work totally unmotivated to get stuff done, it’s way easier to meander off to Reddit to argue about replacing the main character of a movie with the main character of another and how things go terribly wrong? (An actual subreddit of a reddit thread that has 30.1 million members.)

distracting subreddit

Imagine burning three hours of your day as you contemplate replacing Thomas the Train with Henry Cavill or something similar.

But if you stride into your workday with immense motivation about what you’re doing, heck, distractions melt away like ice cubes on a hot grill.


Not to get too esoteric here, but there’s more to the science of productivity and focus.


Daniel Goleman is a leading researcher in behavioral science, a graduate and guest lecturer at Harvard, and author of nine books, including more than one New York Times bestseller.

daniel goleman

Here are some things he shared on the subject of focus.

The antidote for mind wandering is meta-awareness, attention to attention itself, as in the ability to notice that you are not noticing what you should, and correcting your focus. Mindfulness makes this crucial attention muscle stronger.

But focus has its limits, too.

Tightly focused attention gets fatigued—much like an overworked muscle—when we push to the point of cognitive exhaustion. The signs of mental fatigue, such as a drop in effectiveness and a rise in distractedness and irritability, signify that the mental effort needed to sustain focus has depleted the glucose that feeds neural energy.”

These quotes are from Goleman’s book, Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence, a 2013 New York Times bestseller.

focus, by daniel goleman

KosmoTime has hacked neuroscience and behavioral cognition by allowing you to train your mind to be focused, not simply rely on external features.


For example, with KosmoTime’s distraction-blocking feature you’re combining two powerful cognitive behaviors:

  • Limitation of distractions coupled with
  • Focus on a task


Taken together, your neural circuitry is rewired to bring both focus and attention in a white-hot laser-like execution of tasks.


So, let’s get back to it. How do StayFocusd and KosmoTime stack up?

Comparison of KosmoTime and StayFocusd

Simply put, KosmoTime is more robust than just a distraction-blocker.


It’s a full-bore productivity suite backed by science and powered by slick software and AI.

StayFocusd KosmoTime
Blocks Distractions on Social Media Sites
Blocks emails, Slack messages, etc.
Calendar Management
Sprint Sessions
To Do List
Task Creation
Time Tracking


StayFocused does just one thing. Here are some reviews of the software from the Chrome extension page:

  • The options are WAY too limited, for example, you can’t make the nuclear option run in 2 times of the day (eg 11-2 AND 8-9)
  • I like the fact that I get 5 minutes to browse unproductive sites; mental breaks are good every now and then, and the limit keeps me from going overboard. This bug keeps me from doing that without cheating the program, though.
  • Stayfocusd blocks sites it *thinks* I accessed through blocked sites. It started blocking some websites which I didn’t access through blocked sites and because of the strict settings policies I can’t change that while I need to use these sites. The only workaround is to disable the extension.
  • I found that StayFocused is way too complicated for me – so many options and settings to play with – I just want to get my work done
  • There is also no way to create timed blocks (eg you can’t access this site from 8-9 but can 9-10 as the extension restricts you from putting the time to 0
  • Not to mention the privacy concerns, like the app asking me if I don’t like the product just when searching for an alternative (might be a coincidence tho)
  • StayFocusd for improved productivity! It’s lightweight, with a minimum of the most important features, and works beautifully.

How Are KosmoTime and StayFocusd Different?

The main difference between KosmoTime and StayFocusd is that KosmoTime is a full productivity software, whereas StayFocusd is a configurable site-blocking extension.


StayFocusd is, well, focused.


KosmoTime is comprehensive, but keeps those distraction-blocking features forefront.


KosmoTime vs. StayFocusd – Which One Should You Use?

If your intention is solely to keep you off websites that waste your time, use StayFocusd.

If your intention is to keep a to-do list and execute tasks while also blocking distractions, use KosmoTime.