As most of you know, Time management is not about managing time but developing our ability to prioritize when and how specific activities should be done to improve our efficiency and productivity. We know we have great time management skills when we can keep both work and life in balance.
A great technique which goal is to increase focus and reduce distractions is the Pomodoro Technique, developed in the late 1980s, by the Italian author of the Pomodoro Technique Book, Francesco Cirillo.
The technique is named “pomodoro” which means “tomato”, after the tomato-shaped kitchen timer used by Cirillo.
So how does this technique work?
- Start your day picking up your first task from your to do list
- Set a timer for 25 uninterrupted minutes. Once the timer rings, it is time to stop even if you just have some minutes left.
- Leave your desk and take a 5 minutes break to disconnect from work.
- Put an ”X” after each “pomodoro” (25 minutes) until the task is finished.
- After 4 ”Pomodoros”, take a longer break, between 15 to 30 minutes.
- At the end of the day, review the number of “X” you marked for each task. This will give you relevant information such as how long time it will take you to complete future tasks, activities or projects. You will also be more aware of how much time you focus on work during the day.
Remember that it is very useful to test techniques in order to understand them better, know when these are more effective to use and what results we can expect from them.
The more we try new techniques, the more insight we will also get about our own behavior patterns.