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Lucas Schiavini
Lucas Schiavini

Posted on • Originally published at lucas-schiavini.Medium on

Pomodoro Technique

One of the things I started using in college and was such a game changer that I continued using was the Pomodoro Technique.

What is it?

Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s created what is called The Pomodoro Technique. He wanted to help improve with his studies by making it less of a hassle.

So he commited for 10 minutes of focused study time. He used a tomato (pomodoro, in Italian) shaped kitchen timer.

The technique is simple:

  • Get a todo-list + timer
  • Set timer for 25 minutes, focus on a single task until the timer hits
  • When that session is over, mark “one pomodoro” and record what you completed.
  • Enjoy a 5 minute break
  • After 4 pomodoros, take a longer break, 10–25 minutes.

How I use the Pomodoro Technique

My timing:

  • 50 minutes of work followed by 10 minutes of rest
  • Every 4 blocks of work, 25 minutes of rest

Size of a work block

The sizing of time may vary between every type of person, but here’s how I tweaked it to work for me.

  • If I’m in a good place mentally I tend to push well over 50 minutes on my first work block of the day, sometimes I can go uninterrupted for 2 hours.
  • But if I’m working on something that is really frustrating me, I tend to divide my work blocks for 40 minutes at a time, and I take my breaks religiously.


I also tweaked breaks in a way that I feel refreshed by them.

  • Breaks must be without any screens (computer, tv, cellphone)
  • Breaks can consist of meditation, light walking, reading pages in a book


It’s important to me to use one source of truth to use pomodoro, so I have the PomoFocus app on my desktop computer.

It’s also important that breaks I need to consciously start, while work after the break starts automatically (or else I’ll forever postpone with any reason I can think of). That is provided by the app.

So tell me what you think, do you use pomodoro or a similar method (or even better, a different one? Do tell me in the comments bellow.


You can check out more at Todoist and on Francesco’s site.

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Top comments (2)

tsbrun profile image
Anya Brun

Definitely important to take restorative breaks so you can go back to doing productive work for another decent block of time. I’m still working on that one, lol.

lschiavini profile image
Lucas Schiavini

Hhahahaha it's an ever going challenge for me, but the moment I feel I'm not being productive and I check out the timer, it says rest time every time lol.