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How To Lock Opal's Screen Time Access

To enhance the security of your Opal Sessions and prevent the disabling of Opal's access to Screen Time during a Session, we've prepared a step-by-step guide for you. This guide will walk you through the process of using the built-in iOS app, Shortcuts, to restrict access to your phone's Settings App during an Opal Session (for more detailed information on iOS Shortcuts, please head here). This feature is particularly useful to prevent access to Screen Time permissions. Please note that once this setup is complete, you won't be able to open your phone's Settings while an Opal Session is active, unless you initiate a break. To do so, follow these steps:

  • Open the Shortcuts App: Find the Shortcuts app on your iPhone or iPad and open it.
  • Go to the Automation Tab: At the bottom of the screen, you'll see three tabs: "My Shortcuts," "Automation," and "Gallery." Tap on "Automation."
  • Create a New Personal Automation: Tap on the "+" icon in the top right corner of the screen.
  • Choose "App" as the Trigger for the Automation: iOS allows you to choose from a variety of triggers for your automation. Search for and choose "App."
  • Set to "When the Settings App is Opened": Next to App, tap "Choose," then search for and select the "Settings" App. Tap "Done" on top right. Then select "Is Opened." Select "Run Immediately," and disable "Notify When Run." Tap "Next" on the top right.
  • Select New Blank Automation: After you've selected your trigger, you'll be taken to the "Actions" screen. Here, tap on "New Blank Automation."
  • Add the "Get Status" Action: Tap "Add Action," and then in the search bar, type Opal. Tap on the action called "Get Status" or "Is Opal protection On?" from the list of Opal actions to add it to your automation.
  • Disable Show When Run: toggle the blue Chevron ">" to disable "Show When Run."
  • Add "If" Action: You'll need to add an "If" Action to ensure that this automation will only trigger when a Session is active, and not otherwise. To do this, select "If" from next Action suggestions, or you can search for "If" in the search bar. Once you have done this, you should see "If Is Opal protection On?"
  • ‍Close the Opal actions: At the bottom of the screen, you will see a sheet titled β€œOpal” with an "x" icon on the right. Tap on this "x".
  • Pull up the same sheet: At the bottom of the screen, pull up the same sheet from the previous step. In the "Search for apps and actions" field, Β type "Open App." Select the "Open App" action from the list.
  • Choose the App to Open: After you've added the "Open App" action, you need to specify which app to open. Tap on the blue "App" text and select the Opal app from the list of apps that appear. Then tap "Done."
  • Drag "Open Opal" Under "If" Action: Next, you'll need to drag and drop the "Open Opal" action right under the "If" condition. You can do this by tapping and holding your finger on the "Open Opal" Action, then dragging your finger to the correct location.
  • Finalize the Automation: Once you've set up the "If" condition and the "Open App" action, review your automation to make sure everything is correct. When it is, tap on "Done."
  • Test the Automation: Now that your automation is set up, test it to ensure it works as expected. You can do this by starting a Session in the Opal app, and then trying to open the iOS Settings App. You should see the Opal app opening instead.
  • Final step: Add Shortcuts to your Opal Session. Add the Shortcuts App as part of the App Group for your next Session. This will prevent you from disabling the Automation you just set up.
Please note that if you've locked Opal's screen time access, you can always take a break from your Session via Opal, unless you're in a "Deep Focus" Session. If you're in a "Deep Focus" Session and urgently need to leave, please follow the instructions here.

That's it!Β You have now installed this fool-proof system. On that note, there are more community suggestions, including alternative Shortcuts, on the Opal community forum thread here.

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