We all know how busy our days can get, and before you know it’s 2pm – you haven’t eaten lunch, you haven’t moved from your desk or even stretched your legs for 5 minutes. But what if you could work at pace for short bursts with regular breaks – while feeling like you have accomplished a whole heap of shit for the day? Let me introduce you to the Pomodoro technique.
Created by Francesco Cirillo, it is among the most popular of the many time management techniques out there. This time management system has been around for over 30 years and utilises alternating periods of work and short breaks to maximize how much you get done each day! Winning right?
Hot tip: you’re going to feel bloody amazing by the end of your work day, you know that feeling where you have a sense of euphoria that you achieved so much and kicked ass ALL. DAY. LONG!
Down to the nitty gritty. Did you know? Taking regular breaks gives your brain a chance to relax and reset. Knowing that you only have to work for a short period of time makes it much easier to stay engaged and motivated. The technique works well with intellectual, manual, and creative tasks, so we’re all covered with Pomodoro!
The Pomodoro Technique is based around the good ole’ kitchen timer shaped like a tomato! Getting the idea now? This productive technique is all about time, and not a lot of it! Let’s dive deeper in to the technique.
The traditional Pomodoro pattern is 25 minutes of work and five minutes of break time. After four cycles, you would take a longer break of 30 minutes.
What could be simpler, right?
Use the Pomodoro Technique and accomplish more each day:
1. Download a timer (there are Pomodoro apps in the App Store and Google Play you could use), your generic phone timer or maybe you’d like to go all out and grab a tomato kitchen timer! Whoo!
2. Choose a task you’d like to tackle. It doesn’t matter what it is, maybe pick from your to-do list for the day (you’ve got one of those, don’t you! We’ll touch on that another time).
3. Set the timer for 25 minutes when you’re ready to go. Remind yourself that you will be doing nothing else but spending the next 25 minutes on this particular task. If you realise during these 25 minutes that there is something else you need to do – add it to your elusive to-do list, but don’t get distracted. Continue with the task you allocated this time slot to.
4. Tick that shit OFF your to-do list. Does anyone find that exhilarating when they get to do that? Another one bites the dust vibes.
5. When the timer ends – it’s time to take a short 5 to 10 minute break. Grab a coffee, stretch those legs, grab some water, or just spin around in your chair. But don’t keep working – give that glorious brain of yours a rest.
Nice work! This will set you up for the Pomodoro Technique!
Now, after every FOUR Pomodoros, you get to take a longer break! 20 – 30 minutes to really rest that brain, stretch the legs, assess what tasks you’d like to tackle before the next rounds of Pomodoros begin.
Every four pomodoros equals 100 minutes. That’s it! That is less than two hours which includes 15 minutes of that time being short breaks (based on the 5 minute break rule)… You got this!
That’s all there is to it. Give it a try for a few days and compare how much you get done, and how good you feel, to your normal workday. The Pomodoro Technique will also enhance your ability to focus and concentrate.
Most people find this time management technique highly effective and reach the end of the day feeling much more refreshed than usual.
It can also work wonders at home. Set your timer and see how much housework you can get done in 25 minutes.
Your children can use the technique for homework and studying. You’ll find that you can accomplish much more in 25 minutes than you ever thought.
Take the Pomodoro Technique for a test-run and see just how much you can get done each day. If you have any questions, would love to reach out and tell me how you went, or if you’d like more information, let’s have a chat!