§ Adding Shortcuts to a Focus Mode

To add Shortcuts to a Focus Mode, open FocusCuts and select the Focus Mode from the drop-down menu on the right-hand side (your current Focus Mode will be preselected). Now you can Watch a Folder, add all the Shortcuts in a folder (select the folder and use the button), or select one or more individual Shortcuts and add them.


Use the space key to add a selected Shortcut or folder to the current Focus Mode. Typing a few characters (such as the start of your Shortcut name) will jump you to the desired Shortcut within the list.

§ Control Focus Modes

To control Focus Modes with FocusCuts, create one or more Shortcuts to turn them on and off. You can make use of the Shortcuts action to get a list of your Focus Modes.

§ Grant FocusCuts Permissions to Read Your Focus Mode

FocusCuts showing that it does not have access to read your Focus Mode

When you first launch FocusCuts, or after migrating to a new device, you will need to grant FocusCuts permission to read your Focus Mode status. If the popup (below) does not appear automatically, you can trigger it by clicking “Request folder access”.

FocusCuts asking for access to read your Focus Modes

When you click OK, a folder picker will pop open at ~/Library/DoNotDisturb/DB/ and you just need to click OK.

The File Picker pop up to grant permissions

§ Grant FocusCuts Permissions to Read Your Shortcuts

In order for FocusCuts to give you a custom list of Shortuts for each Focus Mode, it needs to read your Shortcuts. When you first run the app it will pop up a window to ask you to grant access to Shortcuts Events. Clicking OK grants the permission.

FocusCuts prompting for access to Shortcuts Events

§ Hide FocusCuts When No Focus Mode is Active

If you want FocusCuts to behave like the native Focus Mode icon and disappear when there is no Focus Mode enabled, change the preferences for “Show in Menu Bar” from “Always” to “When active”.

FocusCuts Preferences

§ Hide the Dock Icon

To hide the dock icon for FocusCuts, open Preferences and set the “Show in Menu Bar” option to true and then close the main window.

§ Launch on Startup

You can launch FocusCuts automatically at startup through System Preferences. In the Users & Groups pane, go to the Login Items tab, and then add FocusCuts to the list of applications.

Login Items in System Preferences

If you want to remove it later, use the button to remove FocusCuts from the list of Login Items.

§ Shortcuts Actions

See the Shortcuts actions page for more details.

§ Watch a Folder

If you want to add every Shortcut in a folder to a Focus Mode you can drag the folder to the Shortcuts list or click the button with the folder selected. If you would rather keep the list of Shortcuts in sync with the folder—rather than a static snapshot at the time you added the folder—you can click Watch Folder in the bottom left. Watched Shortcuts folders in the current Focus Mode are prefixed with ⫸.