A pomo-what?! A pomodoro!
Here’s how it works:
Set a timer for 25 minutes.
Work on task until it’s completed or the timer goes off.
When the timer goes off take a short break.
Traditionally you take a 5 minute break. I usually stretched in my seat or went to the bathroom or refilled my water and then started the next pomodoro.
Throughout the duration of this challenge I averaged between 10 - 20 pomodoros a day.
The first 10 days I liked the challenge, the following 10 days I didn’t, and the last 10 days I loved it.
By the end of the challenge I was ready to recommend it to anyone in ear-shot, but something still didn't jive.
I decided to start another 30 day pomodoro technique challenge, but increase the intensity by committing to at least 20 pomodoros a day.
I failed the challenge.
The pomodoro technique was great for when I was feeling unmotivated. It forced me to get out of my head and focus on the task at hand. It gave me a greater sense of progress and clarity in my workday.
But where this technique fell short was in how tedious it can become if you try to do too many.
There were times where I would experience flow and I would forget to set the timer or I didn’t hear it go off or I couldn’t commit to a full 25 min chunk of time because I had to go or I got interrupted or I couldn’t be bothered with how many pomodoros something would take because I just wanted to get it done a.s.a.p.
There was a MASSIVE takeaway though!
Write down 1 todo at a time.
For the past 6 years I've been using a task management system to track all my todos, but this can become overwhelming.
So now what I do is write down 1 thing from that list at a time to keep me focused on what I should be working on.
I find this strategy offers a great balance between seeing the forest and the tree.