If you have trouble allowing little distractions to pull you away from your work several times a day, the Pomodoro Technique might be a great fit for you. This is a great time management method.
This technique is also great for those who have work that could take an unlimited amount of time like if you were writing a book. The Pomodoro Technique has four basic steps.
The first step is to simply pick a task from your to-do list. The second step is to set a timer for twenty-five minutes and you would only work on that task for the allotted amount of time.
This means you wouldn’t pause to check social media or have any distractions open in the background. It also means that you wouldn’t switch to a task that you find easier or feel more urgent.
Once your twenty-five minutes are up, the next step in the method is to take a five-minute break. After the break, you would then choose a new task, or return to your first task if it wasn’t complete and work for another twenty-five minutes.
Each task is referred to as your pomodoro. Once you’ve done four pomodoros, or after four of your twenty-fine minute sessions, the final step is to take a break that is at least fifteen minutes long.
This final break shouldn’t exceed thirty minutes. This technique has become so popular because it helps you break down complex projects into ones with manageable amounts of time.
It can be hard to doing research for five hours, but it becomes easier when you do it in twenty-five-minute sprints. You can also put more than one pomodoro in a session. So for example, if you have some simpler tasks like folding laundry or paying the doctor bill you can put them together in one session.
You’ll be surprised at how quickly you can cross things off your to-do list when you use this technique. If you’re in the middle of a pomodoro and you remember you need to do something else, don’t stop.
Simply write the forgotten task down and continue working. For this technique to work, it’s important that you don’t stop during the middle of one. Some interruptions—such as needing to pick kids up—are unavoidable.
If this happens during one of your pomodoros, simply take that time as your break, and start a new pomodoro after the interruption is over. You may find it useful to plan your pomodoros in advance to head off interruptions.
Divide your blocks of time into sections and write next to these sections what you’re going to accomplish during your pomodoro. You can also write down how many pomodoros you think it will take you, or how many you would like it to take you and then strive to reach that goal.
It’s important when planning your pomodoros not to assign yourself so much that you can’t cross everything off the list. This will leave you feeling like you failed or that it didn’t work at the end of the day. Start with the more pressing and urgent tasks, and if you have more time, then work on the smaller things.