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#HomeOffice: Embrace remote work with pomodoro

The coronavirus forced many people to work from home, where a number of distractions are at hand, and the boss is not breathing in our neck, guarding deadlines. How to motivate yourself to work in such an environment and on the other hand: how not to work too much?

Choosing the right keyboard and mouse, the right position at the desk, the right attitude to work - these are all extremely important elements #HomeOffice. However, even the best accessory and the most ergonomic workplace will be of no avail if we can't focus on this work.

Also read:

  • Coronavirus closed the offices. How to organize work at home - a guide
  • How to work at the computer so as not to hurt yourself - a guide
  • The keyboard is the most important addition to your computer. We suggest how to choose well - a guide
  • It's not just about comfort, but about health. We suggest which mouse to choose - a guide

There are many methods to help us increase our productivity. From the extensive GTD (Getting Things Done) developed by David Allen to Kanban, the Japanese method of visual task control.

However, no one is more conducive to focus on work than the pomodoro technician.

What is pomodoro ?

Just as GTD or Kanban are methods of work organization, so pomodoro is a method of organizing work time, or maybe even organizing our own energy for work.

This technique was developed in the 1980s by Francesco Cirillo. The name itself comes from the Italian language (tomato) and, contrary to appearances, it doesn't have much in common with vegetables, but with ... a kitchen clock that Cirillo used to measure time.

How does pomodoro work? It is very easy.

We set the clock to 25 minutes and during these 25 minutes we focus only on work. Then we have a 3-5 minute break, and again we return to work for 25 minutes.

Every time we finish the 25-minute stretch of work, we put a marker on a piece of paper (or in the application).

After four 25-minute cycles, we can take a longer 15-30 minute break.

Is pomodoro technique effective?

According to research - yes. The main problem in focusing on work is the presence of constant distractions, especially now in the era of social media and the constant canonade of notifications. Another problem exhibited by researchers is unusually long work without a break, during which we lose focus and work only seemingly.

The pomodoro technique solves both of the above problems. It forces us to focus on the task for a relatively short period of time, which makes it easier to avoid distractions than if we were ordered to work constantly, e.g. for an hour. Short breaks are conducive to maintaining concentration, make it easier to look at the problem with a fresh eye, and also serve our health well, even by tearing us away from the desk and monitor every 25 minutes.

Pomodoro technique - how do you go about it?

Francesco Cirillo used a sheet of paper, a pencil and a timer in his method. Of course, nothing prevents you from reaching for these proven methods. Let's remember, however, that Cirillo did not have access to mobile applications, and they are today the best tools for using the pomodoro technique.

The easiest way to measure time in pomodoro can be an alarm on your phone or watch.

We set two timers - one for 25 minutes, the other for 5 minutes. When one is over, we immediately start the other.

A similar function can be used in the browser pomodoro applications, such as Tomato Timer . There are no goodies here - just three timekeeping sections: work, short break and long break.

Mobile applications offer much more extensive options, but here the specific choice depends only on our vision. Typing "pomodoro timer" in the application store throws away dozens of programs with a very similar operating formula.

Pomodoro applications

However, if I were to pick one best, it would definitely be Focus To-Do

Focus To-Do combines a list of tasks with a pomodoro counter, adding a gamification trick.

The application is free in the basic version and is available on all leading platforms: Android, iOS-IE, Windows 10, macOS-IE, as well as as a Chrome extension and an Apple Watch app.

In the application, we can choose the task we want to work on, and the program will measure the time of work and breaks. The timer works in the background, and on Android displays a clear visual widget in the notification bar.

We can also use the Focus To-Do application as a blocker of other applications for the duration of work, so that we are not tempted by e.g. browsing Facebook during the 25-minute window.

During work, we can also listen to the sounds of nature or other ambient sounds that will help focus.

The application synchronizes across platforms after creating an account and collects all data in a neat summary. If we need additional encouragement, we can compete with other users or look after the virtual plant - if we stop working or fail to meet our goals, the virtual plant will die.

Focus To-Do is a very extensive application. If, however, someone was looking for a simpler solution that simultaneously blocks other applications, I can recommend the Forest: Stay Focused application .

While working in the application, a virtual tree grows, and access to other programs (or websites, if we use the browser extension) is blocked.

Forest, unfortunately, does not automate work sections and breaks, so you have to change them yourself. However, it has the undoubted advantage that when we plant the right number of virtual trees, the developers of the plant will plant a real tree instead. We work and save the environment at the same time.

It is worth giving a chance to pomodoro technique

This is one of the most popular and effective methods of time and energy management during work, used by millions of people around the world.

In a situation where we suddenly moved to a home office and we do not have a manager standing above our heads or even colleagues from work, it is easy to either procrastinate for half a day, or vice versa: work for hours without a break.

Pomodoro is probably the easiest way in which we can deal with these problems.

#HomeOffice: Embrace remote work with pomodoro


  1. You have given incredible substance here. I'm happy to find this post as I tracked down heaps of significant information in your article. Gratitude for sharing an article like this.pomodoro focus


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