Pomodoro Technique: Get to know how it might help you in your everyday life
Have you ever heard of the Pomodoro Technique? Indeed, it has something to do with tomato, but this is not a recipe for a sauce or a formula to get the tomatoes tenderer and juicy, so then keep those knives away.
The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method that can help your productivity. Let’s see what it is and how it can help you. Please take notes of this ‘’recipe’’.
The Pomodoro technique was developed by Francesco Cirillo in the late 80s, and it is a system that seeks to improve time management through its division into fragments. It takes its name from the shape of tomatoes – “pomodoro” an Italian word which is a classic clock for the kitchen that Cirillo used to develop this technique.
Specifically, the method divides time into 25-minute periods–called ‘’pomodoros’’ which are separated from each other by little breaks to rest. The idea on which the Pomodoro technique is based is that frequent breaks could improve mental agility. In the workplace, this technique could contribute to an improvement in productivity. Another important goal of this method it is the ability to reduce interruptions.
The technique would consist of five stages: planning, annotation, recording, processing and display.
At the beginning, in the stages of planning and recording, a list of tasks is made in order for these tasks to be completed in a period of time, usually a day. When the pomodoros are completed, these are recorded, allowing you to analyse how the work was carried out and take the proper steps to improve it.
In a practical way, we could say that the technique would work in five steps:
1. Decide what task will be performed.
2. Pomodoro (usually an alarm clock) is programmed at a lapse of 25 minutes.
3. It is performed in a concentrated and intensive way until the alarm goes off. When it goes off, an X is shown, which represents that a pomodoro has been completed.
4. There is a 5-minute rest (to go for a coffee, or to take a short walk, or to think about that cheeseburger that you are going to have after work … you can do anything but please use this time to relax not to work ).
5. The process starts again. When the four pomodoros have been reached, you can take a longer break, usually around 20 or 30 minutes.
The creator of this technique thinks that it is important to use certain elements; for example, he thinks that it is good to use a mechanical one like the ones used when cooking, as the act of turning the dial of the clock represents the physical commitment to initiate and carry out the task. Similarly, the sound of clock when ticking and the alarm buzzer reinforce the conditioning process. However, some people might get better results using some other tools like stopwatches, apps, etc. use this in order to facilitate this technique.
Pomodoro Technique, like almost any other technique, has also some critics. Some people find it too demanding. Others say it could discourage teamwork. With such criticism, some solutions have emerged as the “peer-to-peer pomodoro”,applying the technique between two people who share the same goal, could improve the quality and creativity and sense of teamwork. Just like anything, each person will have their opinion based on the results.
The technique is commonly used by all kinds of groups: programmers, writers, creative people, students … Another criticism that has received this technique is the division of periods in 25 minutes, which they think is too strict and not very flexible; splitting the tasks in an uniform time period would be too complicated. However, like any other technique, it can be adapted depending on the person. The period of 25 minutes may be too long or too short depending on your resistance or the tasks that need to be performed, so perhaps, it is more useful to try intervals of 10 or 30 minutes. Or the difference might be in the rest periods; you can try different breaks, according to your needs.
In addition to its ability to intensify and structure the work and avoid interruptions, the Pomodoro Technique helps “gamify” the work, which means turning the work into a little game -, which could make it more bearable. For example, when a pomodoro is completed, it would mean that a goal is achieved, which could generate satisfaction. Similarly, the breaks could be seen as a reward for the mission accomplished.
Putting it into practice this, it is not an easy thing. Not because its mechanism which is very simple, but because it is breaking our habits, which have been established for years. You will need some time to get used to it. By Adapting it to your needs, it will be easier for you to get used to it. In order to do this, you will find various ways, depending on your preferences.
Some people, for example, suggest using longer work periods at the beginning of the day and reducing them as the day progresses. Others suggest not using it for tasks that are not important, and save it for more important work. Others do not “program” pomodoros throughout their workday, but they use it throughout the day more or less depending on the activity of the day.
For some other people, it does not work quite well, and they want to stick with their usual working methods or they want to try different techniques (there are loads of them, and we will talk about them in the future). You know what they say that every person is different…
Now that you know what is the Pomodoro Technique, you can tell us about your experience once you have tried it. Oh, have you already tried it? Did you have to adapt it to make it work for you? Have you improved your performance? Share your experiences with our blog readers and us by leaving a message on our comment section. Thank you very much!