I came across the Pomodoro Technique back in November 2009. Pomodoro is the Italian word for tomato and there are several tomato kitchen timers. This is what inspired Francesca Pirillo in coming up with this productivity technique. It goes against the popular notion that multitasking can help you accomplish more things in a shorter period of time.
The Pomodoro technique is built upon the notion that you should do one thing and only one thing at a time. More specifically, you should only do one thing in every 25 minutes. No multitasking. Minimize distractions.
How does it work?
In the first place, you will need a timer. You can use the stopwatch of your mobile phone. Or you can get a timer from the closest department store. Set your timer to 25 minutes. Within that period, you should accomplish only one task.
What if you are working on a big task that will require more than 25 minutes? Simple, break down the big task into smaller tasks and give yourself 25 minutes for each task.
Francesca Pirillio calls each 25-minute intervals a pomodoro. You should be strict in completing your task within that pomodoro. Blot out all distractions as you work. If you get distracted and you start doing another task, then one pomodoro is wasted and you will have to repeat that pomodoro all over again.
After each pomodoro, give yourself a 5-minute break before starting on the next task.
To learn more about the Pomodoro technique, go to this site.
You can also get several resources such as the To Do List, the Activity Inventory, together with other stuff.
To help you apply this time management technique, you can also download the Focus Booster app, a desktop timer application that you can use. It is built on the Pomodoro technique and will save you some money because you won’t have to buy a timer anymore. Before downloading this app, you will need the Adobe Air application first. You can also try the web-based Tomato Timer.
Try this system for a month and see if it works for you. If it does, then you can certainly incorporate it as part of your working habits.
I have personally tried this time management technique and it works. The 25-minute chunks of time is a great way to really make sure that I am doing something productive. I encourage you to give it a try for at least two weeks. Then go back to this blog and let me know what you think about it.
If it improved your time management skills, then perhaps, you can recommend it to others.
The Pomodoro Technique for Time Management by Sitepoint Blogs.
Applying the Pomodoro Technique in Writing by Meryl
Using the Pomodoro Technique by WebWorker
The Pomodoro Technique Fights Deadline Anxiety with a Timer by Lifehacker.com
The Pomodoro Technique Day Six by Mark Hamilton