Amanda here! In my last post I promised I would share another of my favorite tools in my productivity arsenal, and here it is!
Today, I deliver the Pomodoro Technique. How many times do you sit at your desk knowing all the task you have to do and continuously get disrupted or distracted? This technique is definitely a game changer for you if this seems to always happen to you. It’s times up for distractions!
The Pomodoro technique has been around since the 1980s. The method uses a timer (usually 25 minutes) to help break the work down into smaller intervals followed by a brief break. I time my break at 5 minutes off. It helps set the tone on focus and flow. In those five minutes, I take a stretch, pay a bill, walk around briefly or find something to purposely distract me.
While I do not struggle to finish the task I set, I do have trouble finding time to break. Eating, unscheduled tasked, chores, and even creative reboots often become neglected to my constant work pace. The Pomodoro technique helps me stay fresh and mindful of what’s happening around me.
Once you’ve done 4 intervals your break becomes longer (15-20 minutes), then you reset. The intervals are indivisible. You either need to inform others what you are doing or record the task for later. If you cannot postpone the job, the Pomodoro interval must be abandoned. That’s right, you have to start over or neglect to record your interval.
I started using the Focus Booster app (opens in a new tab while I work) during a free trial and fell in love with the method. Focus Booster also allows you to track how much time and resources you’re allocating to each client as the day goes on.
This is especially helpful for new entrepreneurs. This allows you to see how you are spending billable hours and your flow of productivity over the month, week, or hours. It also allows you to filter different aspects to account for your particular accountability needs.
Honestly, you don’t need the app. You can set this time on your phone and work from there. When I have a big work week, I adjust my intervals for more extended work times. And if I work pass my interval time, to finish at a decent stopping point, I start my break interval right after for the same amount of time. I don’t shorten it because I ran over, nor do I lengthen it because the interval was extended. The key is to stay as consistent as possible.
Remember, as a freelancer or entrepreneur, your time is valuable, so you want to maximize it as much as possible. Don’t feel bad if you have to work through your breaks. And don’t feel obligated to stay committed to short break periods. You have to work in a capacity that is best for you. The main point is to give yourself a structure to minimize distractions.
Content courtesy of Amanda Reese, Founder of Blueprint Concepts, an experience-focused marketing firm that provides growth strategy to entrepreneurs and creatives.
Contributing Author, Amanda Reese
As Blueprint Concept’s chief consultant, Amanda does more than drumming on a keyboard. With more than 6+ years of experience in marketing and branding, she’s obsessed with new innovative storytelling and curating experiences to go along with them. When she’s not empowering women and small businesses to be differentiators, she is exploring health and wellness (or watching reruns of The Office). Throughout her career, Amanda has worked with many industries including — education to entertainment, and sports to nonprofits.