How I Use iOS15’s Focus Mode

What Is Focus Mode?

Focus Mode is Apple’s much enhanced and improved Do Not Disturb functionality, where you can create different profiles depending on what you’re doing. In each of these profiles you can set which apps and people can send you notifications immediately, which get added to summary or can’t send you notifications at all. Alongside this you can customise your home screen to look different depending on which mode you have enabled.

How I Use Focus Mode

I’ve set up my default home screen with a few specific principles:

  • Bottom half of the screen is reserved for apps as they’re easiest to reach
  • Any apps not on the home screen are in the App Library
  • If I need to access an app not on the home screen, I swipe down and search for it
Default Home Screen

Work/Life Balance

My Work Focus Mode is configured to automatically turn on at 10:00 and turn off at 16:00 during weekdays. It’s a helpful shove to get in the zone for getting work done.

Work Home Screen

Sleep Mode

My sleep mode turns on automatically with my scheduled Wind Down, which is 21:45, and turns off at 07:00 when my alarm goes off.

Sleep Home Screen
  • AutoSleep reminds me when I should be going to bed and Sleep reminds me when my Alarm is set.
  • Finally I have Daylio which I use to reflect on my day.

Configuring Focus Mode

Configuring Focus Mode is super easy and straightforward. All you need to do is go to Settings > Focus Modes and customise the pre-existing ones or set up a new one.

Configuring different home screes.


Overall I’ve found iOS15’s Focus Modes to be really helpful and valuable in helping me be more intentional about how I use my phone. By scheduling my work and sleep focus modes it helps me stay focused on what I need to do, and if I am tempted to check Instagram or Twitter, the friction I’ve added to my process keeps me checking them out most of the time.

Further Reading

Digital Minimalism



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store