The Pomodoro method is a productivity technique developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 1990s. Cirillo’s technique is one of the most respected time-management techniques in the world. The goal of the Pomodoro technique is to reduce distraction and increase focus.
Four basic principles
The Pomodoro technique is centered around 4 basic principles. These 4 basic principles are
- Work with time, not against it
- Eliminate burnout
- Manage distractions
- Create better work/life balance
Work with time
The Pomodoro technique allows you to just focus on the task at hand. If you follow the steps and focus solely on the task at hand, work will become much easier. If you follow the Pomodoro Technique, you can forget about running out of time.
Eliminating burnout is one of the things that make the Pomodoro method such a great productivity technique. The quick breaks you get after completing each pomodoro is a great way to put a stop to burnout. The little breaks allow you to take a little mental break. Those breaks increase your focus in the next pomdoro and speed up your workflow. The less time you spending work, the more you can prevent burnout.
Managing distractions is another one of the keys to the Pomodoro method. You will not get the results you want if you cannot manage distractions and focus. Make sure you are working in a place that is quiet or have some headphones that block out unwanted sound. Also, during the time you’ve set to work, you cannot distract yourself. That means don’t go on Facebook(even if it’s just to check one message).
Create better work/life balance
The last principle of the Pomodoro Method is a byproduct executing the technique correctly. If you execute well, you can lower your work time and avoid stress. With a more open schedule you can deal with things that happen outside of work. Avoiding stress will improve your work/life balance tremendously. If you’re not worrying about your job and not coming home exhausted, you can make more out of the time you have at home.
- Choose a task
- Set a timer for 25 minutes
- Work on your task until the timer rings, if finished, cross it off on your to-do list
- Take a five minute break
- Repeat the first 4 steps 3 or 4 more times
- Take a 15 minute break
Choose a task
This step is relatively simple. Pick a task from your to-do list or calendar that you want to work on. You want to choose the biggest or most important tasks first, when you have the most energy. That way, you won’t have to finish that huge task that has been loitering in your to-do list when you are tired.
Set a timer for 25 minutes
You can use a regular physical timer or your phone to set a timer. Put 25 minutes on the clock and then just get to work. It’s that simple.
Work on your task until the timer rings
Now you’re left with just you and your work, so get to it! Work until the timer rings and then evalute. If you’re done with your task cross it off of your to-do list. If not, take your break, then come back to it later during the next pomodoro.
Take a 5 minute break
After you’ve been hard at work and focused on your tasks for a good 25 minutes, take a 5 minute break. But, you’re break should’t be longer or shorter than 5 minutes. So, you might want to stay away from YouTube(it tends to extend your break). On the other hand, don’t just keep working through either. The breaks are implemented in this technique for a reason. If you skip your breaks, you’ll become mentally fatigued. Some things you might want to do during your 5 minute break include: listen to a song, organize your desk, do a little exercise, go to get a drink, or even go to the bathroom.
Remember to be patient, you’re not going to be Mr. Productivity in a week. You might not get through every pomodoro, sometimes you won’t keep working. That’s okay. Everybody makes mistakes, so when you mess up just move on to the next thing. If you stay focused and keep working through all of your mistakes, you can still get the job done in half the time. Also, remember to take time before and after you work. Take time before you work to plan out your day’s tasks. This could be the night before, or right when you get there but it needs to be done. After the job is done, take time at the end of your work to review what went will(and what didn’t) and plan for the next day.