The time our brain can concentrate on a task is not unlimited. There are critical cycles of our brain that allow us to maintain attention, and these range from 90 to 110 minutes. However, several studies confirm that maximum and sustained engagement over time is 15 minutes at maximum.
Taking frequent breaks helps to recover attention and work more efficiently and productively. However, you must remember that these breaks must be scheduled in a specific way and follow an order.
Therefore, we present you one of the best techniques to divide your working day, taking frequent breaks to help you regain concentration and increase your productivity: the Pomodoro Technique.
This technique divides your work time into 25-minute blocks separated by short breaks, the whole process using a timer. Each of the 25-minute blocks is considered a Pomodoro, and each time four Pomodoros are completed, a more extended break of 20 or 30 minutes should be taken.
The Pomodoro technique was invented in the late 1980s by Francesco Cirillo. This student realized that even if he sat down to study for hours, he was not making the most of his time due to distractions. That’s why he took a kitchen timer in the shape of a tomato and set 10 minutes to concentrate as much as possible on his study during that time. And it worked, so he took a short break and repeated the process.
The success and benefits of this technique come from frequent breaks, which cause your brain to do a kind of “reset” to improve concentration and motivation. By working for defined times, you force yourself to meet your goals within these fixed limits, so you will be motivated to complete tasks more quickly.
What is the Pomodoro technique for?
The Pomodoro technique is mainly used to increase efficiency and productivity at work, primarily if you work remotely.
The 25-minute work sprints are often used for the following issues:
- Breaking down complex projects: If a task takes up more than four Pomodoros, it should be able to be broken down into smaller tasks to be actionable and affordable. This ensures orderly and measurable project progress.
- Unify small tasks: Any simple task that does not take more than one Pomodoro should be unified with other small tasks. How often have we postponed an email or read an article with the excuse of “it takes me a minute, then I’ll do it later”? Unifying small tasks will force you to accomplish them on time, without excuses.
- Improve weekly, and quarterly planning: Having a record of achievements using this technique will allow you to identify over time how different long tasks will take you so that you can improve your planning in the medium and long term.
- Reduce distractions and have better control of time: Paying attention to distractions during a Pomodoro is forbidden. These distractions can be external, for example, a co-worker calling you, or internal, such as receiving an email or a personal reminder. Interruptions should be noted and postponed until the end of the 25 minutes.
- Reduce physical pain and mental fatigue: It is joint for back, shoulder, or knee pain to appear after working 8 hours sitting down. Taking regular breaks to stretch your legs will reduce this kind of pain. In addition, allowing the mind to rest frequently also reduces mental exhaustion.
- Increase productivity, concentration, and motivation: When you feel good physically and mentally, you are willing to perform more tasks and accomplish them in a shorter time. In addition, working against the clock turns the task into an exciting race to finish before time runs out. This excitement will encourage you to work faster, thus increasing the amount of work you do.
How does the Pomodoro technique work?
To make it easier for you to understand how this technique works, here is a visual explanation:
The image represents a 145-minute Pomodoro cycle. Therefore, your workday will consist of 3.5 Pomodoro cycles.
This technique is well known due to its good results in terms of productivity and its numerous benefits, so looking for an application of this type can be overwhelming due to the multiple options.
Here we leave you our recommendations for this type of app:
Paymo is a work management platform. It includes task planning, task scheduling, time management, and invoicing. It is characterized as an application designed to work in an organized way and to meet the timing, i.e., to ensure the delivery of projects on the selected dates.
The Pomodoro technique option is available in the desktop widget. All you have to do is open it, and choose a project and the task or tasks you want to work on using the Pomodoro method.
The interface has a 25-minute timer that is presented as a countdown. During the Pomodoros time, the notification alerts will be disabled, and you will be able to activate them when a work session ends. In addition, if you must interrupt a Pomodoro block, the Pomodoro visual percentage will reset. However, the time entry will still be recorded and available in your timesheet.
PomoDone is a time-tracking application that uses the Pomodoro technique. It helps companies manage tasks, track employee work hours, and measure employee productivity.
It includes disabling notifications, managing logs, keyboard shortcuts, customizing labels, and creating subtasks. Users of the application can set up multiple time slots for working or resting and regulate all their tasks through a timer that allows start, stop and pause.
The application also allows you to simultaneously switch between multiple tasks, create time charts, and provides daily, weekly, and monthly progress reports that are notified via email.
The PomoDone application offers integration with several third-party applications, so it is perfect for including it in your dashboard and working with it from Rambox.
Rambox is a desktop simplifier that can help you adopt the Pomodoro technique in your daily work. You will be able to include applications that help you keep your time simple and organized.
To include the applications mentioned in the previous section, click on “+ add an app” and type the name of the application you want to add in the search bar.
Also, thanks to Rambox’s Focus Mode functionality, you can disable all notifications for 25 minutes, thus complementing the Pomodoro timers you want to use.
That’s it! You now have all the tools to start implementing the Pomodoro technique in your daily life and increase your productivity.
If you are overwhelmed by the number of applications you have to work with, and can’t optimize your time and resources, try Rambox for free. All you have to do is download the program, configure it to your liking and start enjoying its functionalities. No cards, no cheating, it’s that simple!