Pomodoro Technique: How Does It Help Your Productivity?

I am usually juggling a half a dozen tasks at anytime and as any fan of productivity knows that this is a recipe for disaster.

I have tried different productivity tips and task managers online and offline but never really got a good grip on it.

I have finally gotten down to listening to David Allen’s Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity book on Audible. I am 1/4th through the book and I am really committed to trying out this system and see if it helps me. I’ll write more about it in the coming weeks. It was a mistake though to try using a GTD based task manager without fully understanding the concept.

But, in the meantime I came across this article titled “How to Rebuild Attention Span and Focus” on Lifehacker. This screamed ‘please read me’ at me as that is exactly my problem is. My attention span is so bad that I sometimes mindlessly switch between my Firefox or Chrome tabs.

I get ‘zen-like’ concentration only while I am working under dire circumstances, like when a server is down or a site is down, etc. Other times you don’t even want to know.

The article goes in depth on a lot of good points and you can read them there.

What caught my eye in the article was ‘the Pomodoro technique’.


What is Pomodoro Technique?

The Pomodoro Technique™ is a way to get the most out of time management. Turn time into a valuable ally to accomplish what we want to do and chart continuous improvement in the way we do it.

Francesco Cirillo created the Pomodoro Technique™ in 1992. It is now practiced by professional teams and individuals around the world.

As simple as it sounds just in a few days of trying out this method I feel like I have accomplished a lot with so much better concentration than I have in a while.

How to implement Pomodoro Technique?

  1. Choose a task to be accomplished
  2. Set the Pomodoro to 25 minutes (the Pomodoro is the timer)
  3. Work on the task until the Pomodoro rings, then put a check on your sheet of paper
  4. Take a short break (5 minutes is OK)
  5. Every 4 Pomodoros take a longer break

I started using a 10 minute timer instead of a 25 minute timer with 2 minute breaks. I intend to keep increasing this pomodoro. In fact, I found in a couple of instances that I kept going for 2 or 3 sessions without a break when I could concentrate on the task at hand like that.

I also find that listening to a lyric-less music helps with focus.

Pomodoro Software

The pomodoro timer could be as simple as a kitchen timer to something advanced like a desktop timer software that lets you enter notes and track your progress later.

In fact, there is even a PomodoroTechnique Timer Google Group where you can find references to timers for various platforms such as Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, iPhone apps, Symbian apps, etc.

Pomodoro Free Ebook

You can also download a free Pomodoro Technique ebook (pdf) and read all about it. It is an interesting read and definitely could prove to be a great help in managing your time better.

Pomodoro Books

I found a couple of books on Amazon on this topic too

What kind of time management tactics do you use? Different methods work for different people. I am still discovering mine and I will share my experiences here.

{via Pomodoro Technique }

6 Responses to “Pomodoro Technique: How Does It Help Your Productivity?”

  1. Etienne Segonzac July 30, 2010 at 12:02 pm #

    Hi Karthik,
    I’m completely with you on the GTD + Pomodoro combo.
    One for managing my tasks, the other for managing my time.

    And the number of pomodoros I do in a day is a great indicator of my global productivity (in fact I built an iPhone app around this idea, don’t hesitate to contact me if you need a promo-code).

    Cheers !

  2. Clare July 31, 2010 at 1:32 am #

    I’m a big fan of the Getting Things Done strategy and since learning it my time management has improved greatly. I’ve also tested the pomodoro technique and it does work – I just haven’t managed to make it a habit yet! Thanks for reminding me about it – I have the app on my computer so today I’m going to switch it on and use it :)

  3. thesis writing October 10, 2011 at 7:38 am #

    I did’t know that.

  4. Tom October 11, 2011 at 11:27 am #

     I have bookmarked it and I am looking forward to reading new articles.Keep up the good work!  


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