The internet has made our dream come true: we are in charge of our productivity. And it doesn’t matter if you are an employee, a freelancer, or an entrepreneur. You have to be good at managing your time. One very popular way to do it is through the Pomodoro Technique. But how does it work?
What is the Pomodoro Technique?
The Pomodoro Technique is an approach to managing your working time. It’s all about finding a balance between periods of intense activity and short breaks. Downtimes are important to relax a bit, keep your mind clear, and then get back to work. This way, when you’re active you will be fresh and effective.
Its origins date back to the late 1980s. Francesco Cirillo, a college student, implemented it with a tomato-shaped kitchen timer. The Italian word “Pomodoro” refers to a sauce made from tomatoes.
How does the Pomodoro Technique work?
The Pomodoro technique is very simple. You need a timer, a piece of paper, a pen, and a great desire to organize your time.
First, write the tasks that you want to complete. This can be a simple “to do” list. Next, divide your work session into 25-minute productivity periods. You will call them “Pomodoros”. Avoid all distractions!
Between each Pomodoro, take a 5-minute break. This is will allow you to clear your mind. Every four Pomodoros take a longer break of 20 minutes.
Your goal is to give your total attention to a single task. Thus, interruptions are not allowed. If an unforeseen issue demands your attention, you can write it down to take care of it during the next Pomodoro. If you MUST take care of it, cancel the Pomodoro and start again later.
At the end of each Pomodoro, cross off the tasks you have completed. Add any comments you feel are necessary. Later, this will allow you to reflect on your productivity.
Is the Pomodoro Technique effective?
The Pomodoro Technique can help you to maintain mental agility thanks to its breaks. Also, when you avoid multitasking, you can finish your work with effectiveness.
The 25 minute periods are recommendations. Everybody is different, and you may find that longer or shorter Pomodoros work better for you.
Some people feel that the Pomodoro Technique can discourage teamwork. One proposed solution is the “Pair Pomodoro”. This is the application of the approach with two people working together for the same goal. This reduces interruptions and increases creativity and satisfaction.
The Bottom Line
The usefulness of the Pomodoro Technique varies depending on the type of work you are going to do. Certain tasks allow you to work on your own time. Others demand that you respond to various stimuli one after the other.
The Pomodoro Technique is not a cure-all solution. Some people work as freelancers, entrepreneurs, employees, or even artists. Try it and find what works best for you.