The Pomodoro Technique® Core Process
The core process of the Pomodoro Technique consists of 6 steps:
1. Choose a task you'd like to get done:
Something big, something small, something you’ve been putting off for a million years: it doesn’t matter. What matters is that it’s something that deserves your full, undivided attention.
2. Set the Pomodoro for 25 minutes:
Make a small oath to yourself: I will spend 25 minutes on this task and I will not interrupt myself. You can do it! After all, it’s just 25 minutes.
3. Work on the task until the Pomodoro rings:
Immerse yourself in the task for the next 25 minutes. If you suddenly realize you have something else you need to do, write the task down on a sheet of paper.
4. When the Pomodoro rings, put a checkmark on a paper:
Congratulations! You’ve spent an entire, interruption-less Pomodoro on a task.
5. Take a short break:
Breathe, meditate, grab a cup of coffee, go for a short walk or do something else relaxing (i.e., not work-related). Your brain will thank you later.
6. Every 4 pomodoros, take a longer break:
Once you’ve completed four pomodoros, you can take a longer break. 20 minutes is good. Or 30. Your brain will use this time to assimilate new information and rest before the next round of Pomodoros.
The Pomodoro Technique® Daily/Weekly Process
The Pomodoro Technique book is organised into six incremental goals. The objectives should be achieved in the order in which they are given here:
1. Find out how much effort an activity requires: Ever wonder where all your time goes? Wonder no more: it’s all on the page. Your Pomodoro To-Do sheet is a visual overview of the time you’ve spent on various tasks.
2. Cut down on interruptions: Usually, you can afford to take 25 minutes before calling back a friend or replying to an email. You’ll learn how to handle the inevitable interruption while staying focused on the task at hand.
3. Estimate the effort for activities: Once you’ve gotten the hang of the technique, you’ll be able to accurately predict how many Pomodoros it will take to accomplish tomorrow’s -- or next month’s -- tasks.
4. Make the Pomodoro more effective: While the contours of the Pomodoro are set, what you do within them can be adjusted to maximize efficiency. One way to make a Pomodoro more effective is to use the first few minutes to review what you’ve done before. Other methods are discussed in the book.
5. Set up a timetable: A timetable sets a limit, motivating you to complete a task within a set period of time. It also delineates your work time from your free time. Creating a clear timetable will allow you to enjoy your time off without worrying that you could be doing more work.
6. Define your own objectives: The Pomodoro Technique is a tool you can use to reach your own objectives. For example, a writer might realize he’s spending too much time revising, and adjust his Pomodoro timetable to allow for more brainstorming time.