Ever get frustrated that every time you use the internet you get caught in a never-ending rabbit warren of articles, listicles, endless tabs and never-ending video binge sessions?
Yeh me too, but god damn I love the internet.
Like a lot.
It is the centre of my business and the thing I interact with the most outside of my family.
I hate how opening my internet browser (I use chrome, along with half the planet.) meant wasting hours flipping aimlessly through tabs on an information gathering journey.
As the years went by I felt trapped by the internet but started to wonder if it wasn't the apps, social networks and actual browsers themselves that made it hard to leave.
They are feats of engineering and those good looking people that design it all are using consumer psychology in their product design I tell ya! (Tin Foil Hat) They are part of the reason we can't leave and are trapped here! Send help 🥺
My daily routine is all about amping myself up to be positive and focused only to end up in a browser and lost in an endless loop of low productivity output.
In frustration, I went to Google (shock horror, its literally my solution for every problem) and was welcomed by quick-fix promises of mastering productivity and mastering my time management. 🤓
Every article offered conflicting advice.
Use the Pomodoro technique.
Work offline and only check emails 3 times a day.
Use a bullet journal.
Have you tried micro dosing?
Why does it seem like every technique is going to take total mental commitment and energy?
All I wanted to do was get through my tasks without being stressed so I could go surfing.
So, I decided to try EVERYTHING! At the same time but I swapped micro dosing for espresso and modafinil (Spoiler: not a great combo for your anxiety levels).
Productivity Systems I Used
2. Bullet Journal
3. Working Offline
4. Tracking Everything
6. White Noise
But despite all of that I still felt like a loser with no willpower.
That’s when I had a breakthrough. I decided that the single most dangerous thing for my productivity was the new browser tab.
Why was this tab so dangerous for me? Well, every new tab was an opportunity for distraction.
A way to start Googling all the things in my mind and not actually doing any of the work.
I had had enough.
There had to be a better way to always have my tasks top of mind but not wrapped up in an enterprise project management tool with so many fucking options I wanted to jump off a bridge.
Dependencies, resource managment, portfolios, sprints, Ghantt charts.
I am a team of one. All I want is something above a todo list but below a pm tool.
Help me, please!
Anyway, I tried a few chrome extensions and the usual round of well know apps.
Took me a whole day of flicking around. No money-making joy there but my monkey brain was happy and on a mission.
Long story short is I couldn't find anything that gave me a personal kanban that didn't take 20 minutes to load and didn't give it to me in each new tab.
So what the hell lets try and build one.
Quick Note: I am not a developer at all. Like at all.
So I fired up Figma and put a brief out on UpWork.
3 weeks later and $2500 and we have this.
Swell is a chrome extension that turns every new tab into a kanban task manager.
It looks like this, at least it did 20 minutes ago when I was hacking a design together in Figma ( Props to those guys its an amazing tool)
This means there is no jumping between apps and browser tabs to find the productivity tool of your choice and looking around for a place to capture your latest thoughts.
So I started building Swell to take back my browsing habits and to try to get me back in the water and surfing as quickly as possible.
We started with a simple new tab kanban board that showed us our tasks in neat little swimming lanes every time we opened a new tab.
Within a week I was back on track nailing all my tasks and getting more work done than ever before.
All by using this free chrome extension!
But better than that, I felt happy from completing tasks, healthy from spending less time chained to my desk and I had more energy and at the end of a long work day and I could keep going.
We wanted to give you a chance to use Swell while it’s in beta and would love to hear your feedback.
Go ahead and grab a free copy below by entering your email.