pomodoro technology

The Pomodoro technique: working and learning productively

Work productively and gain more time at the same time: The Pomodoro technique makes it possible.

Whether School, Uni or Work - Staying focused on a task is a real challenge in the digital age. Messages on your smartphone, phone rings and desktop notifications - distractions at work abound. If you find it hard to stay focused, try the Pomodoro technique.

What is the Pomodoro technique?

The Pomodoro Technique, a time management method, has been around since the 1980s.

"Focus in an activity leads to success".

was the guiding principle of the inventor Francesco Cirillo. The aim of the method is to focus on one task over a set period of time.

With the Pomodoro technique, tasks are divided into 25 - minute working intervals subdivided. In between follows in each case a short break of 5 minutes. After four units there is a long break between 15 and 20 minutes. Incidentally, the technique is named after the clock Cirillo used during his first experiments - a kitchen alarm clock in the shape of a tomato.

How does the Pomodoro technique work?

  1. Divide tasks into "pomodori": First write a to-do list. Break down large to-dos into subtasks that you can complete within 25 minutes.
  2. Alarm clock set to 25 minutes put: The manageable time span motivates to start with the first task.
  3. Complete the first subtask: Until the alarm clock rings, you work concentrated on a task. The limited amount of time supports goal-oriented work. Important: Possible distractions such as the ringing of the phone, e-mails or social media during this time!
  4. Check off the task on the list: When the 25 minutes are up and a pomodoro, If you have completed a subtask, cross it off the list. This creates a sense of achievement. In addition, the written documentation based on time intervals helps to improve your own time management step by step.
  5. Each work interval is followed by a break of 5 minutes, after four pomodori take a longer break between 15 and 20 minutes. During short downtimes, body and mind recover. Performance and concentration are thus maintained over a long period of time.

What are the advantages of the Pomodoro technique?

  • Focused work: Short time intervals with regular breaks ensure that you stay focused on a task without digressing or getting distracted.
  • Perceive time better: The Pomodoro technique helps you to be aware of time and to use it effectively. Francesco Cirillo emphasizes the importance of the kitchen alarm clock in this context. While the ticking of the clock helps to perceive time, the winding of the alarm clock underlines the determination to start a task.
  • Reflectivity: The documentation of tasks and fixed time intervals help to reflect and further optimize the work performed.
  • Continuity: The strict pattern of work and break sequences ensures a consistent work rhythm.

Pomodoro technique in practice: the best tips

The Pomodoro technique is uncomplicated - and perhaps that's why it's so popular. Here you will find more tips on how to successfully apply the method in everyday life:

1. write a detailed to-do list

An important The basis for the practical implementation of the Pomodoro technique is planning! Especially in the beginning, it is not always easy to correctly estimate the time required for individual tasks and to break them down into pomodori ...to be divided up.

The more often you use the technique, the easier it will be for you to plan in the future. To start with, it's better to do too little than too much. If you are faster, you can even check off two to-dos as completed at the end of an interval.

2. do not let yourself be pressured

One disadvantage of the Pomodoro technique is the short time interval to complete a task - especially if you get easily stressed under time pressure. Here we come back to point 1, the to-do list. The Pomodoro technique helps you to better estimate your working speed.

So don't put yourself under pressure if you haven't completed a task in the allotted time. Instead, revise your list and divide the work step again into small bites.

3. use simple tools

According to Cirillo, the ticking and ringing of an alarm clock change the perception of time. Documentation with paper and pencil is simple and straightforward. Even if the method is based on analogue tools - today there are practical Desktop applications and apps:

Focus To-Do

The free app for IOS facilitates the entry into the Pomodoro - technique. In addition to the timer, you can create projects in the app. Within the projects, users create subtasks and define the number of time intervals. Diagrams document the progress.

Focus To-Do
Price: Free+


For Android and IOS, the app combines time and stress management. In addition to a focus timer based on the Pomodoro technique, the app includes a meditation and sleep tracker.

Tomato Timer

The timer works browser-based. So you don't have to download any software. In the application, you formulate to-dos beforehand, which are each completed in a time interval of 25 minutes.

4. stay flexible

Even if one work step is strictly speaking 25 minutes: Depending on the task, such a short time interval can be rather a hindrance. This is especially true for tasks that require a lot of thinking or creativity.

Here it can be useful with to experiment with different time intervalsFor example, 50 minutes of work with a 10 minute break or 90 minutes of work with a 20 minute break.

Pomodoro technique and stress management

Methods like the Pomodoro technique help you accomplish many tasks in a short amount of time. Although the method works with set time intervals, it helps in the long run Time pressure in studies as well as in the workplace.

A fundamental principle of the Pomodoro Technique is based on focusing fully on one task. Those who apply the method learn over time, Successfully block out distractions and not let phone calls or emails stress you out any more.

The Pomodoro - technique works with intensive, but short time intervals. The division of an extensive task into small sub-areas prevents excessive demands. In addition you have a small sense of achievement after each subtask and stay motivated until the end.

Breaks as an important component

Breaks are also an important part of the Pomodoro technique. Whether you drink a glass of water, talk to a colleague, or get some exercise in those five minutes, it's important that you're not just sitting around. Regenerate mind and body during this short Time out.

Often stress arises because we put off certain tasks for an unnecessarily long time. The short time intervals of the Pomodoro technique motivate us to tackle to-dos in a timely manner and to help against procrastination.

The last and most important point: with the Pomodoro technique you have increased leisurewhich you can use entirely for yourself. In addition to the five-minute breaks, you complete tasks much faster overall.

In this way, you may not only become more successful, but you can also use the time gained to implement your own projects in order to Sport or to relax after work with a long walk.

Want to learn more about time management? On stressbehandlung.info you will find numerous tips for productive and stress-free work

Besides the Pomodoro technique equally helpful: The Pareto Principle and that Eisenhower Principle.

Text: Natalie Grolig