What Is The Pomodoro Technique And Why Should I Care?

A blue timer

In today’s fast-paced and ever-connected world, staying productive while working remotely can be challenging. I work from home today and understand the struggle of managing distractions, staying focused, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance. In some parts of my day, I occasionally use the Pomodoro technique to approach my work and maximize productivity.

What is the Pomodoro Technique?

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method that breaks work into intervals, typically 25 minutes long, followed by short breaks. Developed by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s, this technique has gained popularity for its ability to boost focus, manage time effectively, and increase overall productivity. If you need help to stay on track, quickly succumbing to distractions, or feeling overwhelmed by work, then I recommend trying this technique.

Structure for Productivity & Breaks

The Pomodoro Technique’s core revolves around breaking work into manageable intervals. Each interval, commonly known as a “Pomodoro,” consists of 25 minutes of focused work, followed by a short break of around 5 minutes. After completing four consecutive Pomodoros, an extended break of 15-30 minutes is taken. This method is rooted in the belief that frequent, intentional breaks help maintain concentration and prevent burnout.

Because there are dedicated time blocks for tasks, remote workers can harness their focus and eliminate distractions. The 25-minute work intervals catalyze deep work, letting individuals immerse themselves in a task without succumbing to interruptions. These focused bursts of productivity are complemented by short breaks, which offer a chance to rest, stretch, hydrate, or briefly disengage from work. This structured rhythm helps remote workers maintain momentum, combat procrastination, and boost productivity.

Tracking your Progression

Another element of the Pomodoro Technique is tracking progress through completed Pomodoros. By visually marking each completed interval on a physical sheet or with digital tools, remote workers gain a tangible representation of their accomplishments. This progress tracking instills a sense of achievement and aids in self-assessment and time management. As individuals monitor the number of Pomodoros completed, they can identify patterns, evaluate their productivity, and make informed adjustments to their workflow.

How do you try the Pomodoro Technique?

At home, I suffer from 2 issues.

  1. I don’t take breaks.
  2. I still need help to focus and get deep into work.

I have a list of things I need to get done; however, some are more complicated than others. For example, I typically need to create a set of communication or product framing documents for different audiences. I have to synthesize information from many sources and figure out how to best express the points I need to get across. When I have a lot to do and many things that I’m trying to juggle, I naturally procrastinate on these tasks – which isn’t always the greatest. I decided to try the technique, but it requires a bit of setup whenever I’m ready to sit down and focus.

Prepare for Productive, Timed Work

Firstly, I carve out my time and make this known to others. I typically book blocks in my schedule when I need focus time. If anyone is looking at my calendar, they can see that I’m busy during this time. My team generally respects this focus time block; however, if they don’t – I recommend trying to set this up as a team norm. Many folks appreciate opportunities to define their focus time as long as it’s respected within the team.

When I’m ready to start working, I set my status to say “In Focus Time,” which signals to anyone who sends me a message that I probably won’t respond until I’m back. To create an optimal workspace, I close all windows unrelated to the upcoming task and try to maintain a tidy workspace, so I’m less likely to get distracted.

Before initiating the timer, I outline a goal for the upcoming 25-minute stretch. This goal-setting step primes me for productivity and ensures that I’ve achieved at least one of the objectives I set out to tackle by the end of the cycle. The key is to accomplish at least one task you plan to do. If you think one task is too big, you must break it down into something smaller.

Finally, I kick off by setting a timer for 25 minutes. I sometimes use the timer on my phone when I’m lazy and want to start; however, several free apps offer more robust features like tracking multiple Pomodoros to build up to an extended break.

When the timer goes off, I quickly wrap up and step away from my desk. This is hard for me, but I need to walk off. I try to avoid picking up other work or browsing through work messages. This time is for me to recharge. It’s only 5 minutes. I might as well use it!

Remember, sticking to the technique isn’t the goal; instead, it’s a means to carve out designated time for both productive work and essential breaks. By adopting this method, I’ve found ways to carve out more dedicated heads-down time throughout the week and maintain a healthy work rhythm.

What benefits of Pomodoro can you expect?

When used appropriately, the Pomodoro technique can be valuable when working remotely at home. One of the technique’s advantages is its ability to boost productivity through focused work intervals. Remote work environments often expose individuals to many distractions, ranging from household chores to social media temptations. You can commit more of your focus to these relatively short 25-minute blocks of time. Tasks appear more approachable but foster a sense of accomplishment with each completed Pomodoro. The iterative process enhances productivity and can counterbalance the disconnection remote workers might feel from their work.

In addition to its impact on productivity, the Pomodoro Technique helps with time management and task prioritization. When you’re working remotely, it’s more crucial to be able to manage this on your own. The technique’s built-in timer serves as a guiding force, which can keep folks accountable and on track when combined with a goal. If done often, you can start to grasp the rhythm of your work and become efficient at getting things done. By cultivating this time-conscious mindset, professionals can navigate the often overwhelming array of tasks in remote work settings, resulting in a heightened sense of accomplishment and control over their workday.

Why don’t I use the Pomodoro Technique all the time?

As a Product Manager, I’ve found that while the Pomodoro Technique’s structured approach is practical for focused tasks, it only sometimes works with the demands of constant communication and team collaboration in my role. At times, my distractions are a priority over my focus time! Adapting to these dynamic tasks means that I need to maintain open channels of communication. While I do utilize the technique for tasks requiring deep concentration, I can only use it for some things. I have to balance immediate collaboration and focused work in this fast-paced environment.


Wrapping up, it’s clear that it’s a simple technique for boosting productivity and keeping a balanced work-life vibe. Once you get the hang of it, you can apply it to your work routine, which clicks perfectly with the remote setup. Timed work spurts, smart planning, and well-deserved breaks fit just right, especially when the home environment can get distracting.

What’s nice about the Pomodoro Technique is that it’s super flexible. Whether juggling projects, cooking up creative stuff, or just working from home, you can bend its rules to fit your to-do list. Remember, it’s not just about doing more work; it’s about finding a way to keep your work and life coexisting. So, if you still need some time back to yourself, certainly try out the Pomodoro Technique.

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