How do you avoid procrastination?
Just as there are many ways to avoid work through procrastination, there are also many techniques to help you be more efficient at getting your work done. One of the best ones is the Pomodoro Technique.
The Pomodoro technique is one of the most popular productivity hacks ever. Have you ever wondered exactly what it is or where it originated?
Well wonder no more! First, I’ll talk about what the Pomodoro Technique is, then how it originated and finally, why it works so well. Using this technique will not only ensure that you’re able to get your work done, it’ll help you manage your stress before your stress manages you.
What Is The Pomodoro Technique?
The Pomodoro technique is a productivity hack that use the power of a simple timer. The basic idea is that you use a timer (this method is named for a tomato-shaped timer) and set it for 25 minutes. During the 25 minutes you focus on whatever task you’re trying to accomplish. The 25 minutes is your time to work, work, work! 😊 When the timer goes off, you stop working and take a break for 5 minutes.
When your break time is over, restart the timer and you’re off to the races! After four repetitions (otherwise known as Pomodoros), you take a longer break of anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes. Keep repeating this cycle until you’re finished.
Pomodoro Technique’s History
This technique was created by Francesco Cirillo, who was looking for a more effective way to study when he was in school. He had found that he was constantly negotiating with himself to study for ten more minutes at a time. As if, "If I can study for ten more minutes, then I will take a break.”
Eventually, he noticed this "bargaining" was quite effective. He got a kitchen timer and started to time his study sessions, eventually falling on 25 minutes as his preferred session length.
What Makes The Pomodoro Technique Work So Well?
One of the things that I really like about the Pomodoro Technique is that it really helps you to get things done. 25 minutes is a small enough amount of time that even the most distracted person can accomplish a great deal. This technique is really where the idea of using short bursts of productivity was born. Here are three reasons why the Pomodoro Technique is so effective.
It Reduces Procrastination
The number one reason why many use the Pomodoro Technique is to increase their productivity. One of the great benefits of an increase in productivity is that means there’s a reduction in procrastination.
People often procrastinate because a project seems huge and overwhelming or they can't seem to find the perfect time to start. Both of these excuses are addressed by the Pomodoro Technique. It helps you break down what would normally be a monster of a project into manageable chunks. This encourages you to start because 25 minutes is much less daunting than trying to find a time to finish an entire project.
It Gives Your Brain Breaks
Our brains aren’t designed to work all of the time. That’s one of the reasons why we sleep to rejuvenate ourselves. Although you may feel like you can focus for more than 25 minutes, that may not always be the case.
Most people experience the best levels of focus when for around 20 minutes before needing to give their brain a break. The Pomodoro Technique embraces this, giving your brain the time it needs to refresh as you proceed with completing your task. This method keeps your mind refreshed and focused as you go through your workday.
Your Perspective Will Stay Fresh
The Pomodoro Technique really shines when it comes to large projects. When you work on something for an extended period, you can often start to have tunnel vision on certain aspects of the project. This tunnel vision can accidentally ignore other aspects that may be important to the project's success. You can alleviate tunnel vision when you work in a short burst work method because the breaks help you start each work session with renewed focus. This method not only keeps you creative but will constantly give you a fresh perspective of your project.
As great as the Pomodoro Technique is, sometimes people feel that they have to follow it exactly. But you can make the short bursts of the Pomodoro Technique work for you.
Pomodoro Technique and Short Bursts
Maybe you like the idea of the times being clearly laid out for you as they are with the Pomodoro Technique, or maybe you find 25 minutes too long or short for your work sessions.
Either way, it's important for you to know that you don't have to use the Pomodoro technique exactly as is if you want to work in short bursts. You need to know yourself and how you work best and then you can choose the length of your work sessions, as well as the length of break that accompanies the session. This is the beauty of the short burst work method; it can be tailored to fit your individual needs!
So there you have it! All of the basics of the Pomodoro Technique. It’s really a game changer when it comes to keeping up your productivity levels, after all, it’s all about Making Time.
Let’s talk. How do you make the Pomodoro Method work for you? Let me know in the comments section.
Cassandra Martin-Himmons is a trainer, wellness coach and consultant who believes in empowering her clients and providing the tools that they need to make positive changes in their lives to manage their stress and increase their self-care. In her spare time, she enjoys papercrafting, volunteering and travel. Connect with her on Instagram or LinkedIn