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Pomodoro Technique

Pomodoro Technique

Over the past decades, many world leaders, business tycoons and famous personalities have written about their experiences and reached a common conclusion- Time is the lock while its management is the key to success. Many time management techniques have evolved.

One such technique named “Pomodoro Technique” was developed by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s. This technique is primarily focused to increase productivity. 

It happens often with everyone, they just sit for hours or do some work continuously but in essence, they don’t achieve any productive results. To overcome this boredom and improve concentration, the Pomodoro technique was developed by this college student.

Let us read and understand this technique to apply it in our daily lives.

What is Pomodoro Technique?

The word ‘Promodoro’ means ‘tomato’ in Italian. It was named as such because Cirillo used a tomato-shaped kitchen timer and challenged himself to do a focused study for 10 minutes. He had trouble concentrating for a long duration, so he experimented on himself.

He wrote a book of 130 pages in simple language and it was easy to understand the context. The book says to follow these simple steps-

  1.  Jot down your to-do list and get a timer.
  2. Set the timer for 25 minutes and focus on a single task until it rings.
  3. When the first-timer rings, mark off one Pomodoro and note down the work completed.
  4. Now enjoy a 5 minutes break.
  5. After four Pomodoros (approx 1.5 hours) take a longer interval of around 15-30 minutes.

Pomodoro is based on the 25 minutes work duration (one Pomodoro) with small intervals in between. To make the most out of it, it possesses three rules also-

  1. Segregate the complex work: If the duration of work is more than four Pomodoros, break it down into smaller courses of action. It will help you to complete the work with productivity.
  1. Combine small actions: Small duration work, say less than one Pomodoro (25 min) should be combined in one task.
  1. Once set, Pomodoro must ring: It is an indivisible unit of time. It should not be broken or disturbed with any distractions like checking the mails, phones etc. You can note down any thoughts or ideas that come up in between the task and work on them later.

If something is important, you can take your 5 minutes break at an early stage but make sure to analyze the interruptions and try avoiding them from the next sessions.

Pomodoro is the simplest and most effective technique if you apply it as it is. Even if you finish your work before one Pomodoro, you cannot waste your spare time. Instead, you can revise, relearn the task, make searches or read any other journals.

Why is Pomodoro so Effective?

Pomodoro is a ‘game changer’ productive technique in the long run. People who enjoyed working long hours failed to realize that after a certain period, they lose their concentration and they are less productive. 

Let’s see how the Pomodoro proves as a productive technique –

  • Easy to begin with: The human tendency of procrastination is what makes a major difference in success. Suppose, you have a vast course subject to complete. It is a blend of difficult and easy topics. It scares you from where to begin and in this fear, you postpone it. You get distracted with sweet pleasures like any OTT series or something like that. 

The Pomodoro works as a procrastination breaking strategy. When followed, the complex subjects seem easy because you don’t see as 0 to 100 hours of work. Instead, it is divided into small duration action plans of 25 minutes. Isn’t it easy to just sit for 25 minutes, complete the task, take a 5 minutes break and start again? It helps you to focus on one task at a time and remove the state of anonymity.

It is said if you can’t jump the mountains, walk a mile. It is always better to take small steps than to never leave a place.

  • Overcoming the Distractions: When you are focused on the execution of work, a minor disturbance will break the flow of work. It is very difficult to regain your focus. But it is not only the external factors that distract us, we are pulled away by self-created diversions too. It almost takes 20 minutes to regain concentration after 1 minute of distraction.

The Pomodoro technique is an aid to all these problems. Each Pomodoro is a set of 25 minutes of work and 5 minutes break that keeps your mind focused.

  • Analysis of Time Wastage: People often plan to achieve results with unreasonable targets and time availability. This leads to failure in planning. Use of Pomodoro technique- a unit measure of time and effort, you can analyze where your time is wasted and channelize the same. 25 minutes productive and planned working on a single task fetch positive results. Cirillo names it as ‘inverting time’ – from negative wastage to positive investment because of conversion from an anxiety-tensed situation to a productive one.

With the use of Pomodoro, you can measure and plan time. Practising Pomodoro will assist to quantify how many Pomodors a particular project will need to complete.

  • Re-wire the productivity: The Pomodoro Technique is feasible because it focuses more on consistency than on perfection. Each Pomodoro session is a fresh start towards your targets, you re-wire the mind to concentrate, challenge yourself and avoid distractions. Self-motivate and try to increase Pomodors each day. Thinking time in tomatoes rather than hours is a lot more fun. Plus, it will show you results when you accomplish your tasks in no time which you thought was bulky and impossible to finish.

Tips for Pomodoro Technique

Here are some quick tricks and tips that will assist in implementing the Pomodoro Technique in day-to-day life-

  1. Plan in advance: Plan today for tomorrow. Take out 20 minutes to plan how will you make the most out of your day. List down the to-do list. Assign how many Pomodors each work will require. Remember, if any task needs more than 5 Pomodors, break it down further into smaller similar tasks. It will be more effective and productive. Ideally, if you work 8 hours a day, Pomodoro should not be more than 16.
  1. Extra Pomodoro: Keep a buffer of 2-3 extra Pomodoros in case you aren’t able to complete any tasks in planned Pomodoros, you can use these buffers. If these extras are not utilized, you can use the learning something new or invest this tomato in the least or any other delayed task. All this planning will lead to stress-free and productive completion of your day.
  1. Length of Pomodoro: Although the ideal and original time of a Pomodoro is 25 minutes, still you can experiment with the length of Pomodoros. A DeskTime study shows that 52 minutes of focused work and 17 minutes break is the perfect work-break balance. Some prefer 90 minutes work with a 20-30 minutes break. You can experiment with the length according to your work.
  1. Avoid Screens: If your work involves a lot of screen exposure, then you must avoid the screens during breaks. You should walk, stretch, go outside, breathe fresh air, enjoy nature etc. during these short intervals.

Hence, you would have understood how simple yet the important technique is Pomodoro. You can implement it in your routine and put the method into action. Plan the Todoist, sub-divide it into further smaller parts, decide the number of Pomodoros and witness the success you get.