What's the Pomodoro technique? 

No, it's not about tomatoes! 馃崊

The Pomodoro Technique is a popular time management method that can help increase productivity and focus. It was developed by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s, and its popularity has continued to grow ever since. 

The technique is based on the idea that frequent breaks can help to improve focus and productivity, and it involves breaking work into short, focused intervals called 'pomodoros'.

Eight squares all coloured in to different levels highlighting splitting your focus and multitasking does not work

Image credit: Janis Ozolins 

What does it involve?

  1. Choose a task to work on.
  2. Set a timer for 25 minutes (the length of one pomodoro).
  3. Work on the task until the timer goes off.
  4. Take a short break (usually 5 minutes).
  5. Repeat steps 2-4 four times.
  6. After the fourth pomodoro, take a longer break (usually 15-30 minutes).

The idea behind the technique is that by working in short, focused bursts, you'll be less likely to get bogged down or distracted by other tasks. And by taking frequent breaks, you'll be giving your brain the rest it needs to maintain focus and avoid burnout.

Reasons to try it

The Pomodoro Technique is best used for tasks that can be broken down into smaller, focused chunks. It's particularly useful for tasks that are prone to distraction, such as writing, coding, or research. It's also a good method for people who struggle with procrastination and need a sense of structure to their workday.

Other reasons why some swear by the Pomodoro Technique:

  • Many find that by breaking down large, complex tasks into manageable chunks, it makes them less daunting, and therefore more doable
  • Having the timer provides a sense of urgency which helps to reduce procrastination
  • It allows you to track your progress, as you can measure how many pomodoros you've completed in a day or week
  • It encourages a more active form of resting as you can use the breaks to do physical activities, stretching or even doing other small tasks

Why it may not work for you

But alas, the Pomodoro Technique may not work for you if you find it difficult to stick to a strict 25-minute time limit, especially if you're working on a complex task. 

It may also not be a fit for you if: 

  • you find it difficult to get back into a task after a break 
  • you find the timer, and the set time frame of 25 minutes restrictive to getting into a flow state 
  • you do a lot of tasks which require deep thinking or complex problem solving

One solution for everyone? 

It's important to note that the Pomodoro Technique may not be the best fit for everyone and that's okay, there are many other productivity methods to explore. 

A good idea is to be open minded in terms of elements of different productivity methods, and mix and match, or create your own method that works for you. 

But if you're looking for a simple and easy-to-use method for managing your time and boosting your productivity, the Pomodoro Technique is worth trying out. 

You can test if the Pomodoro Technique is a fit for you with Llama Life, where the default time duration for tasks is 25 minutes! 

Llama Life task list using the Pomodoro Technique