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The Android app that's single-handedly saving my sanity

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If there's one subject we can all relate to right now, it's stress — and, by association, sanity. I'm not necessarily talking about the anxiety related to this week's political twists and turns, either, but more about the ever-present struggle of work-life balance and the way these devices in our dungarees make it consistently difficult to disconnect.

It's certainly something I've spent plenty of time thinking about and aiming to improve over the years. And one area where I've managed to make some meaningful strides lately is in the realm of Android notifications.

Notifications are one of a smartphone's greatest powers — but also one of its greatest potential downfalls, at least when it comes to our current subject of sanity. When you're focused on work, after all, having an important alert bing, buzz, or bop up on your screen takes you away from whatever else you're doing, demands your attention, and makes sure you know what's happening. But when it's the weekend or the evening — well, that same exact sequence occurs: The alert takes you away from whatever else you're doing, demands your attention, and makes sure you know what's happening.

Maybe, sometimes, you want that. But I'd be willing to wager that just as often, you don't. And with Android's native notification management tools, you're basically faced with a black-and-white, all-or-nothing decision: have all of an app's typical notifications continue to notify you during off-work hours — or have all of 'em turned off.

Here in the real world, things aren't always so binary. And I'm happy to report I've found a way to bring some much-needed nuance and fine control into how your notifications are handled when you're trying to unplug (at least a little).


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