Become More Productive with Pomodoro Time Management

Two weeks ago I attended Barcamp in Bangkok. This is a collaborative event from geeks, computer nerds and entrepreneurs who share their ideas and experiences. One of the presenters mentioned the Pomodoro technique for time management. I Googled it, learned about it, all for free of course, and started to use it this week. What is it?


Writing and publishing this blog post shall not take me longer than 25 minutes or one Pomodoro. The Pomodoro Technique is about splitting up your tasks and responsibilities in chunks that take 25 minutes each. You work for 25 minutes on a task and then you take a 5 minute break.


Cooking Timer


The essential tool for the Pomodoro Technique is the cooking timer. This is that device that is normally used in the kitchen. You can turn the timer to any time between the zero and sixty minutes. With Pomodoro, you set it to 25 minutes. Thus after 25 minutes it rings and it tells you that you have spend the time that you envisioned on this task.


Two tips with regards to the cooking-timer:

  1. To make most timers work properly, you first need to turn it to the maximum 60 minutes and then you turn it back to the intended 25 minutes. Otherwise it may not ring and tell you that the 25 minutes is up.
  2. After you have set the timer, put in inside a drawer or cupboard. Otherwise you will be distracted by the ticking timer and that is not good for your productivity. And productivity is what this is all about.


The Pomodoro Technique helps you to improve your productivity in the following ways:

  1. You are pushed to think up front what you need to do
  2. You have to divide your duties into manageable chunks
  3. You have to think up front how much time you want to spend on each task
  4. You set an expectation to yourself to finish a certain task within a certain time
  5. You get reminded when the set time is over
  6. You get reminded to take the regular breaks, stretch your legs, breath deep etc.


There is more to the technique but for that I refer to The Pomodoro Technique website.


After using this for a few days, I must say that I like the concept. It helps me to stay focused. It helps me to get things done quicker. It prevents me from spending too much time on idle activities as reading email and surfing the web. It makes me more productive.


Try it.