Have you ever felt like you’ve accomplished next to nothing after spending hours on your computer?
This is a common problem faced by writers and professionals in general. But did you know that this can easily be solved by the 30-minute method also known as the Pomodoro Technique?
What is the Pomodoro Technique?
It’s a time management system developed by one Francesco Cirillo during the late 1980s, wherein a person has to break down work intervals—usually 25 minutes—using a timer. It’s then followed by short breaks normally 5 minutes in length.
Why is this effective?
• You’ll feel the need to adhere to strict timing.
• Splitting a task into two or three pomodoros (intervals) will keep frustrations at bay.
• Time spent procrastinating is minimized.
• You will accomplish more.
• Frequent breaks will keep your mind focused and renewed.
Why is this perfect for writers?
We (writers) can come up with a number of excuses to keep ourselves from doing something productive; we’ll get distracted by emails, social media, or anything else that will keep us from writing. Sure we have our great days when we can’t stop typing, but then we’d crash and go back to square one. It’s a must for us to stop this inconsistency.
How does it work?
• Make a list of all your tasks for the day. Arrange them according to importance and do the most pressing one first.
• Set your timer—manual or digital—for 25 minutes and begin working.
• Once the timer goes off, STOP immediately.
• Note down what you’ve accomplished in a work period.
• Take a 5-minute break. Set it on the timer.
• When you have completed four pomodoros, take a longer break of 15-30 minutes.
But one problem people using this technique will encounter is unexpected distractions from other parties. How would you handle this? There are two ways: End the pomodoro when the distraction arises or postpone it until the pomodoro is complete.
If you do the latter, here’s what Cirillo suggest:
• Inform the person that you’re doing something important right now.
• Negotiate a time you’ll get back to them regarding the issue.
• Schedule that follow-up ASAP.
• Call back the other party once your pomodoro is complete.
What should writers keep in mind?
• Prioritize your tasks.
• Set doable goals.
• Don’t multitask.
• Work during your most productive time.
• Write first and proofread later.
• Obey the timer at all cost.
• Use a noisy timer (a real one or an app).
• Track your interruptions.
Increase you productivity by doing this simple 30-minute miracle routine. Change the way you do things, change for the better.
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Source: SuccessWorks, CharlesNGO, Clarity, Lifehack, Lifehacker