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A simple, yet powerful tool proven to enhance your productivity

As many of us nowadays we must manage a wide variety of tasks through the day. Sometimes we can feel that there are so many tasks to do that the time is not enough, in other occasions we can feel that we simply are powering through these tasks and do not have the energy to finish them in a effective way. This can be seen in students as well. Students wether in school. college or graduate schools such as, in medical school can easily have a very heavy load of material to study and go through if they want to excel at their academic responsibilities. All of this seems very dire when we do not have the adequate tools. Fortunately, you have come to the right place. In this article we will learn about the Pomodoro technique, a tool that has been proven to help people to focus and being able to perform all of the tasks that they need to do in a very effective way enabling them to enhance their productivity at the same time.

Santi Education | The Pomodoro technique, a very effective one to increase productivity.
Tomato in Italian, means Pomodoro, the name of the technique is due to the fact that the Italian who developed it, Francesco Cirillo, used a kitchen timer in the shape of a tomato.

On what the Pomodoro Technique Consists Of?

The Pomodoro Technique can be considered a method for managing your time. The simplified version of the concept is that the person should consider one pomodoro a 25-minute interval. After this interval a break of 5 minutes should be taken followed for another pomodoro (25 minutes) if the task has not yet been finished. One peculiarity of this technique is its name, Pomodoro, well the name means tomato in the Italian language, this is since the person that developed this brilliant technique was an Italian, Francesco Cirillo and he used a kitchen timer that was in the form of a small tomato (pomodoro).

Santi Education | To maximize the effectiveness of the pomodoro technique, you must first establish and visualize the task you want to perform and estimate how long it will take to complete it.
To apply the pomodoro technique effectively, there are some basic rules to follow.

How to Apply the Technique to Your Daily Tasks

There are a variety of ways in which you can employ this technique for your benefit. The brilliant thing of this technique is that it can be applied to virtually anything that you can be doing which requires you to be focused on the task at hand. It can be used for doing some creative work, for studying, (commonly related to the technique) or other task that may be required from your job.

First, you must figure out the task that you intend to do. Consider the time that it should take to complete or at least to reach the goal that you have set up for yourself, then divide it in how many pomodoros it should take. Let’s say that you must do some work that you know that in 50 minutes should be done, in this case you divide your 50 minutes into 25 minutes interval and with 2 pomodoros you have the time to complete the task covered (2 times 25 minutes = 50 minutes).

Once you figure out this you should set your first timer or pomodoro and start working non-stop until the timer runs down. After this first interval if more time is needed, you should take a 5-minute break before starting again your new 25-minutes interval or second pomodoro, then you should keep on this pattern of 5 minutes of break, 25 minutes working until the task until finished.

Clearly, not all our task will be estimated to be completed in a time which is a multiple of 25 but this is not a problem. You should be thinking what if for example, you have a task that you estimate it requires 60 minutes to be accomplished, which would require 3 pomodoros to complete (3 x 25 = 75 minutes); What to do in this case? Experts on productivity and the application of the Pomodoro technique suggests that you should employ the full 25-minute on the task. If for example, you work on the 60-minute task, by the third pomodoro you must have 15 minutes left, use this time to review the task, if you are studying consider going back to what you have learned and see if you have been able to clearly retain the concepts in your mind. You can double-check if you have accomplished the lessons objectives of learning or maybe your own learning objectives. If you were working on something different like a creative work or other type of work, you can use this time to go back and check for those details that sometimes we missed when we are against a tight deadline or as sometimes happens our minds gets distracted by some other thing. Remember that the idea of this technique is to help you maximizing your productivity by facilitating your brain to focus on a task for a relatively short period of time followed by a short break.

Santi Education | We must keep in mind how much time has been spent working on a task with the technique. Productivity experts recommend establishing "sets" of pomodoros (4 pomodoros equals 1 set) then a 30 minute break should be taken to retake another set of 4 pomodoros if necessary.
The pomodoro technique must be applied responsibly.

The Pomodoro Should be Applied Responsibly

Now that you have a clearer understanding of how to use this technique you should know that there are some limits. According to experts on the mater you should consider dividing this pomodoros intervals and breaks into sets if the task that you intend to do is one which will require an extensive period. If we consider that typical med school student which needs to study for a very important test (as all of them always are) and let's say that to go through all the material he or she must study a full day, let’s say 8 hours to be more concrete. The suggested approach using this technique would be to do 4 pomodoros with their respective breaks of 5-minutes and then take a logger break of about 30 minutes before starting another set of 4 pomodoros with their breaks and keep this pattern until the task is done.

Pomodoro Timers

As for timers for the pomodoro technique we do not need to look no further than our smartphones which typically have a timer integrated into the built-in apps. If not, you can look up for an app in the app store or android store of your phone. There are a lot of apps out there dedicated to the Pomodoro technique. However, it has been known that there is something to the fact of the person using a manual timer such as a kitchen timer. It is possible that the action of physically setting the timer, the feel of the twist in the hands, or the clicking noise it produces helps the brain register more clearly about this period passing by to enhance the focusing even more on the task. There are a great variety of this small pomodoro timers these are so popular that are available in different colors such as pink or yellow! Other great option if the physical product is not your style is YouTube, in this platform there are a great variety of pomodoro timers from simple 25 minutes timers to very elegant videos of enchanted environments with a timer running down and divided already into these periods of 25 minutes. Check out our own pomodoro video timers on YouTube, they are a combination of beautiful and calming nature landscapes together with soft tranquil music which helps to enter in a more concentrated state of consciousness, maximizing even more the productivity of the person. In our channel, The Mindful Space we carry a wide variety of videos that are separated into playlists for your convenience, you will see videos for relaxation, for studying such as the one below which is a pomodoro video timer or if you prefer a video with a nature landscape and the perfect tranquil soundscape for your time working or relaxing, we make those too! If study without music is more your thing we even have videos that consist of pristine nature landscapes with the perfect soundscape and no music to help you give ambiance to your space. Very recently we published one with an autumn theme that surely will go with your workspace. Go there and subscribe, we are always adding more and more fresh content.

Closing Words

There are a great variety of tools available to enhance and help everyone to maximize their productivity, The Pomodoro technique is only one of them. Use this powerful tool to your convenience, experiment with it a little, if you struggle to go the full 25 minutes, try, and see how you feel decreasing to periods of 20 minutes. The important thing here is to enhance your productivity, by practicing this technique and familiarizing with it definitively, you will see the improvement on your capacity to focus on a task. Keep coming back to our site and subscribe so you can keep informed on future posts that we will be sharing with you related to productivity such as this and mindfulness.

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