The Pomodoro technique is a time management method developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980s. With the Pomodoro method you work in blocks of 25 minutes between which you take small or big breaks. Do you often work independently and are you looking for a method to work in a more focused way? Then the Pomodoro technique is suited for you!
How does the Pomodoro method work?
The Pomodoro Technique consists of the following steps:
- Create a list of tasks for the day. In addition, draw up a list of things you want to do for relaxation. This can be a bit of walking, exercising or listening to music. Also make sure that a kitchen timer is standing by.
- In this productivity technique you work in blocks of 25 minutes, each block being called a pomodoro. Choose which task or tasks you want to perform within those 25 minutes. Set your kitchen timer and now you will work undisturbed on that task for 25 minutes. The task does not necessarily have to be finished within those 25 minutes. The goal is that you work concentrated for 25 minutes.
- Your alarm will go off after 25 minutes. Now you take a 5 minute break. After every 4th pomodoro you take a longer break of 25 minutes.
- After the break, you will go back to work for 25 minutes.
Where does the name Pomodoro technique come from?
The name comes from Italian and means tomato. When Francesco Cirillo invented the method, he used a kitchen timer in the shape of a tomato. He therefore called his time management method the Pomodoro technique.
The Pomodoro effect. What are the advantages of the Pomodoro technique?
- Because you know before you start a pomodoro which task you are going to perform procrastination is prevented. You know what you are going to do and you force yourself to go to work when the counter starts running.
- 25 minutes is pretty short for us. You want to get everything out of those 25 minutes and this helps you to work in a concentrated way.
- If you work for a while, your brain becomes tired and your concentration decreases. By regularly taking short and longer breaks, your brain will get a rest. This makes you more productive throughout the day.
- If you see that you tick off tasks on your to do list, then you become more motivated to continue working. If at the end of the day all your tasks have been accomplished, you will get more satisfaction from your working day.
- By writing down your tasks in a structured way, you will get a better insight into how long certain tasks take. In this way you learn to plan your work better. Also, writing down your tasks provides overview and rest. This is also one of the pillars of the Getting Things Done (GTD) method.
Disadvantage Pomodoro time management
If you work at home on your own, you can finish your pomodori blocks undisturbedly. However, if you work in the office, it is often a lot more difficult. If you have been working for just 5 minutes, a colleague will come to you with a question. Your supervisor may also not take your kitchen timer seriously and interrupt you in the middle of your pomodoro.
If you want to be able to carry out the Pomodoro technique effectively in an office with colleagues, you will have to make agreements at the organizational level. For example, a solution is the headphone rule. This rule means that someone who has his headphones on cannot and does not want to be disturbed.
Would you like to read more about the Pomodoro method? Then read our review of Pomdoro Technique Illustrated from Staffan Nöteberg. Are you looking for information to improve your productivity? Then follow our productivity blog.
Book: Pomodoro Technique
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