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How to Block Interruptions in Android 5.0

Sometimes you just need a break from the barrage of messages, reminders and app notifications that threaten to reduce our already waning attention spans. Thankfully the new interruption settings in Android 5.0 are here to help. These options allow you to specify whose messages get through, and blocking the detritus from clogging up your notifications tray. You can throw up temporary wall with a duration of your choosing (from one minute to several days), or set certain days as no interruption zones in order to escape from the terror of never-ending digital confetti.

1. Open up the settings menu and scroll down to the sound and notifications option. Tap. 

MORE: Android 5 Lollipop: A Guide to the Best New Features

2. Tap Interruptions.

The first option you need to choose is when notifications will arrive. Always interrupt is the default setting, which means notifications will stream in as they happen. Allowing only Priority Notifications limits interruptions to just the people and events that you want. Don’t Interrupt blocks everything for as long as you want.

3. Set priority for interruptions.

The next set of option allows you to choose if you want to be interrupted by events and reminders, and messages and calls from anyone or just a select few like family and loved ones. Move the sliders left or right to select what’s best for you.

4. Set how much Downtime you require.

The downtime section allows you to pick certain days of the week, and even specific times of the day to hide from distractions, ensuring that dinner time means dinner, and that you can enjoy your morning coffee in peace.

5. Block specific apps by going back to the sound and notifications menu and tapping App Notifications. 

6. Select an app from the list of installed apps to configure its specific priorities.

7. Slide bar to Block. Or you can use the slider to set a different Priority setting. 

Check out the Tom's Guide Android Forums for even more Android 5 news, tips and troubleshooting help.

Sam Rutherford is a Staff Writer at Tom’s Guide. Follow him @SamRutherford on Twitter, and Tom’s Guide on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.