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What is common between tomatoes and productive time management?

Well, this does sound like something surfacing from a science fiction movie. But it is an absolute wonder once you realize the potential of the correlation between the two.

The snatch here is that you need to think about tomatoes - most of the time, with time, for time, and by time. 

To start with, let's pluck one tomato at a time. 

The Pomodoro Technique has been devised as a time management method in which an individual user alternates between focused work sessions followed by recurrent short breaks. The purpose of this medium is to create a pattern. Once a rhythm is established, the individual thinker can put a set of continual sessions of assorted durations to optimize concentration and reduce mental exhaustion.

What is the Pomodoro study technique?

Spoiler alert! Pomodoro means tomato in Italian. 

If you want to take on board the origin of the Pomodoro, you can check out the book by an Italian research student, Francesco Cirillo, who wrote it during the second half of the 1980s. 

Coming down to 2022, the core aspect of the Pomodoro technique lies in its simplicity and enactment. Here are the five hard-fought steps of the Pomodoro methodology. 

Step 1Select a piece of work along with a timer; this is a good time to make use of the stop-clock on your smartphone.Step 2Set a 25-minute timer and work only on the task you have selected.Step 3Record what you have completed and mark it as one Pomodoro when the time is up.Step 4Ease up and go for a 5-minute break.Step 5Redo the entire activity multiple times, couple with a steady duration of intervals.

Simply put, Pomodoro is a unit measuring your efficiency and capacity. A break follows a 25-minute hyper-focused sprint. After two to three successive pomodoros, reinstate your mental strength with a 15-30 minute break. 

How to set up your Pomodoro technique?

Go small simultaneously - One Pomodoro is your unit of measurement. To make the best of it, group small tasks with additional simple projects. This is a feasible approach to multitasking. 

From complexity comes simplicity - Sizeable tasks must be split into smaller workflows, especially if the project requires more than 3-4 pomodoros. Taking functional steps to solve each workflow will guarantee progress at a steady pace.

No room for unsettlement - Do not muddle with your Pomodoro's time sequence (25-minute sprint). In the event of disturbances such as phone notifications and important emails, check them out once your session is done. Remember, you are trying to build a rhythm, and one must stay away from the noise. 

How is the Pomodoro technique beneficial?

Beat those distractions - Attention is volatile, and so are the distractions that cause them. Regaining focus is quite a challenge for the modern workforce, given the daily notifications that flood their smartphones. A single 30 seconds on Instagram can evolve into a full-fledged session across social media. 

Once you get into the zone of a single Pomodoro, the effect of mental distraction on your attention span will commence declining slowly. Plus, the break followed by one Pomodoro will assist you in reconstituting your entire thought process. 

Break the avoidance cycle - When you dedicate a specific part of one hour to a Pomodoro, you eliminate the probability of engaging in procrastination activities. In each Pomodoro, you break down big tasks into successive small parts and try to solve them in 25 minutes. Your entire cognition is inclined towards fixing the problem instead of distressing the task's weight.

Plan ahead, always - Despite the advent of new technological systems with abundant self-organizing tools, humans tend to plan incessantly. This is because we frequently miscalculate the time span required for completing a specific task, despite following a single-minded set of actions. 

With the Pomodoro methodology, you measure your potential effort per 25 minutes, with increased room for persistence per session. Slowly and steadily, each Pomodoro progresses into a concrete unit of time and effort. With constant repetitions of pomodoros, time is no longer a source of quantifying deadlines but an absolute product of your effort and productivity. 

When you master the cadence of a Pomodoro, you will be in a preferable position to implement and execute a plan. 

Gamify your goals - The applicable feature of the Pomodoro method inculcates a competent drive within an individual. One gets to decide how to refine their Pomodoro session and channel it towards a goal. Successive attempts will only reinforce your concentrative power. Go a mile further, challenge yourself for 28 days, and you will be reanimated as a new person. 

So how do you go about rechristening your workflow with the Pomodoro technique? 

Prepare your game plan - The 25/5 minute session can be challenging to deal with. Therefore, you should plan your Pomodoro marathon well in advance. Determine the amount of time that will be required for essential tasks vs simple tasks. Use an excel sheet or even a pen and paper to jot down your task list. 

Once the list is curated, assign the correct number of pomodoros actively. Do not burden yourself with pomodoros; there will always be tomorrow. If your work is done, use the extra time to learn low priority tasks. 

Your Pomodoro, your rules - Once you have mastered the art of pomodoros, try to experiment with the length of each session. At times, you might be having a rough day, or you are mentally exhausted. This is when you can shuffle the timestamps of each session from 25/5 to 15/5 or even 10/5 minutes. The day you are in for a challenge, try going for a 52-minute focus session followed by 17-minutes of rest. 

Pause the screen time - Courtesy of streaming platforms, it has become unworkable to stay off-screen for some time, but it is not undoable. There is a high probability that a more significant number of your Pomodoro sessions will occur on your laptop. The 5-minute break should not be employed for Twitter, Instagram or any other screen bearing device. 

Do some chores, go for a brisk walk, or run for 5 minutes. Do anything to keep your eyes away from the screen. 

Why go with the Pomodoro technique?

  • When you want to beat time at its own pace
  • When you habitually put off doing things
  • In case you are unable to work at an optimal wavelength
  • When you need to close a lot of time-consuming and open-ended tasks
  • You appreciate gamified goal accomplishment
  • If your personality resonates with words such as alacrity, eagerness, and readiness
  • If you are just a median joe/jane trying to get work done quickly

Need a productivity playlist? Look no further. We’ve compiled a list of songs that you can listen to during your Pomodoro period. 

Check it out here.

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