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I first heard about the Pomodoro Technique from author Ryan Casey’s blog post: The Pomodoro Technique: How I Write 5,000 Words A Day

What is this magical productivity tool The Pomodoro Technique ?

Here’s the scoop: You set a kitchen timer for twenty-five minutes and you do whatever task it is you want to do. You work on that task ( no email, no checking your book stats) for twenty-five minutes, and then when the time is up, you take a five-minute break, no matter what.

The inventor of the technique, Francesco Cirillo in his free book The Pomodoro Technique suggests you get up from your desk, move around, grab a coffee, etc. etc. but limit your distractions, because you don’t have time. Five minutes is well, five minutes so stay away from the chatty guy at the water cooler if you’re using this at work.

I suggest shutting your email down and turning off the world before you begin. The book explains what to do if you become distracted or succumb to distractionJ like I just did when hubby told me a funny thing that happened to him at the grocery store. Hey, it happens, no biggie but I do encourage you to read this part of the book so you know what to do next to keep the focus and flow.

So take your five-minute break, march back to your desk and repeat the cycle again. After four full cycles, you take a fifteen minute break.

I’ve been using it for revisions for the past two weeks  and I’m amazed at how easily my brain has become trained to the timer and how it has increased my ability to hyper focus on the task at hand. The cool thing is, during the five-minute break my brain wasn’t stopping, it was mulling over the work, suggesting a word change here, a visual of my characters body language there, all sorts of fun things. When I go back for the next round and set the timer, I’m ready and raring to go and I’m more engaged with the work at hand because I’m focused wholly on it for 25 minutes at a time. A girl or boy can do a lot in 25 minutes.

Here’s the link to the free PDF book: The Pomodoro Technique Plus, there are Youtube videos and countless blog posts if you do a search. Who knew?

Next on my list is getting rid of my blah white kitchen timer and getting a true Pomodoro (which is Italian for tomato) I want a cute little tomato! This one is available at Amazon.com

Pomodoro tomato timer

Pomodoro tomato timer

There are also Pomodoro Apps for all you geeky people out there for both Apple and Android. Ryan mentions several in his post. See the link above. Focus Booster is also for your laptop.

I will say there is something that clicks in my brain during the physical setting of the timer that I’m not sure I’d get with an app but that’s just me. Use what works for you.

If you try the Pomodoro Technique or have used it in the past let me know how it works for you.

Have a happy healthy weekend!

Coming next week in Healthy Living: Why Keeping a Food Log Isn’t A Bad Thing