Sitting all day in the same position while hovering over a keyboard and straining to see a screen that is always at the wrong angle is a recipe for an early old age. Your Mac to the rescue. All you need is something to remind you to get up and move a bit.
Here are two ways to get your Mac to tell you when it’s time to take a break.
The first way is the SmartBreak app for your Mac. It’s billed as a revolutionary ergonomics program that will remind you to take breaks at a fixed time, but it does more depending upon how much you’re slaving over that aforementioned hot keyboard.
Set the work durations. Set the break times. Even set the app to show when your stress level is high.
One very cool feature that your boss probably won’t appreciate is the option to lock the Mac’s screen during a break period which forces you to stop and take the break. The onscreen stress bar monitors stress level (probably based upon how long you’ve been typing, not how crinkled up your face is at the time).
SmartBreak even has a child-lock feature to make sure your kids (or, nosy co-worker) cannot disable the app while you step away. Using the app regularly to ensure you take breaks can help to prevent Repetitive Stress Injury and Computer Vision Syndrome. Both sound scary, but are probably not as bad as having kids on your Mac.
You could do something similar with Calendar or Reminders, but it’s a lot of work to setup each one, and there’s no way to automatically lock you out of your Mac to ensure you take the break you need.
Another app I recommend is called Pomodoro Timer.
This cute app won’t lock you out of your Mac’s screen, but it will give you flexibility on setting work periods and break periods.