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Becoming Efficient with Pomodoro

A few weeks ago I started a course on time management, it was a topic that I was interested in and we really needed to stop and reflect on our time. The course provides a perspective and techniques that are very useful. One of them that was mentioned and that I already used in my daily life was the pomodoro technique. Before we start talking about this technique, I need to say something first, about time control, not all techniques will apply to you and maybe not even the pomodoro, firstly I have to be realistic like you, reader, this has to have your understanding. Because as an example I will describe how I use the pomodoro technique and give tips. This may or may not work for you. Whenever I talk to colleagues I explain that time control works like a search for better efficiency, where you have to apply a time control technique and evaluate yourself if it has brought any improvement to you. If it doesn't work, try another, another and another. Until something works and if you don't find anything, you can invent one for yourself. The universe of creativity is infinite, if you focus to find it, you will find something.

Understand time


Time is finite.

This has to be clear to you, dear reader, our greatest wealth is our time. If we don't know how to manage, we waste time on unnecessary things. That can end up making our day, week, month and year bad because of frustrations. We shouldn't feel bad about having started reading, starting college or other situations and then giving up. Giving up is not enough to be a mistake, for the wise it is about saving time, where we soon realize that our time is not being used well and is not bringing good results. Example of a college, you start medical school and halfway through you realize that you don't want to do it anymore, you're not feeling well. Instead of ruminating inside to avoid giving up all the time invested. Don't feel bad, stop and notice that you may have 3 years left until you finish medical school and that these 3 years are 1095 days, 26280 hours, 1576800 minutes and 94608000 seconds. Remember stop and observe, do you really want to continue investing your time in something that isn't working for you? . Don't feel bad about it, maybe this change can bring something very rich to you during these 3 years. Learning to manage your time is a great skill.

“Time management is about life management.”

Idowu Koyenikan, Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability


The pomodoro is a time management technique, created by Francesco Cirillo. This technique focuses on dividing time into small portions of 15 minutes, 25 minutes, 30 minutes.....50 minutes, in which you use all your focus for a task. When time is up, you rest for 5 minutes or 10 minutes. The name comes from the Italian, pomodoro which means tomato. This refers to the kitchen timer to set the time the cake is in the oven, using as an example.

Starting with an example, you arrive at your workday and have two tasks. Generate a report and develop a new API, it has to be delivered by noon, you have 4 hours to do this. To be able to pay attention, you use the pomodoro to divide this time, if you think you can finish the report in 1 hour, based on your previous experience, divide it into two pomodoros of 25 minutes and 5 minutes of rest, during this time you focus completely on the Report, when I have time to really rest, I usually stretch, drink water, look at the street in the window. It has to be something that takes your focus off the task or you won't be able to rest. Well, that leaves 3 hours to carry out the API task, instead of doing 30 minutes, you feel comfortable doing 50 minutes of focus and resting for 10 minutes. I repeated the cycle of focus and rest. This is how you apply the technique.

Using my situation as a student as an example, at the beginning of October I received news from 3 teachers who would like a project to be delivered at the end of October. I study at night, in the morning and in the afternoon I work with something that is completely outside the theme of the college I chose, it's 8 hours of office hours, plus 2 hours of transport, an hour to go and another to return. Total 10 hours. Every weekday I have classes for 3 hours and 30 minutes. To be able to apply the pomodoro and hand in the work, I needed to take 1 hour of sleep, why not use the 1 hour I'm in transport to study or do one of the assignments, I don't know about you, I need concentration, on the bus you're in traffic, people shouting and honking and impossible. Now let's categorize work as A, B and C. Using the pomodoro, I scheduled 60 minutes of total focus for the hour I had available. On Monday, Wednesday and Friday I used it for work A and Tuesdays and Thursdays for work B. At the end of the week I had to be realistic with myself, forget about playing video games, reduce going out with friends and take a break from social networks (This was very useful , I used my time better and also spent more time with family). If you want something, you have to learn to control your distracting impulses, at this moment college was my focus. Continuing, on the weekend I reserved the morning time to do 3 pomodoros of 50 minutes for work C, the afternoon time I reserved for the other college subjects. I can't deny that this was very difficult, having your own control is quite complicated. But everything worked out in the end, I managed to submit my college work.


Before you start using the technique, you have to see what your current situation is like and how the pomodoro can help you control your time on work and study tasks. Planning is something necessary, because for you, for me or someone else. The time is different. For you the time may be 30 minutes and for me 50 minutes. There will always be a difference.

The focus time has to be something that is comfortable for you. To carry out a task of learning English as an example, you set a 50-minute pomodoro, but in the 45 minutes you are already distracting yourself by watching things on Reddit. The pomodoro won't do any good. Change your application, put 30 minutes of focus and 10 minutes of rest or 45 minutes of focus and 5 minutes of rest. Observe which one is most comfortable for you to use.

Distractions and interruptions

Getting distracted is something very easy to happen. If you are determined to use the pomodoro, your focus must be on something really for the goal you have chosen. Learning English, Japanese, playing the guitar..... and many other goals. Something that distracted me a lot was the smartphone. To avoid using it at first when I had no control, I left it in the living room and went to my room to study. I can't deny that during my pomodoro break I wanted to take out my smartphone and check my messages. But I avoided even that, because I knew that if I caught myself during the break I wouldn't be able to move on to the next pomodoro. Another thing that is very distracting is notifications, nowadays I only leave them for messages from the bank and calls. If someone sends a message on Telegram at a time when I'm out of focus studying, I'll look at the message and respond, at this point I want you to understand that you don't need to worry about the Instagram notification because your idol made a new story, so that was posted won't rush out, then in your reserved time you go there and look, it doesn't have to be at the same time. Because stop and analyze the situation, you sat on the chair and started studying to learn Japanese, in the middle of the pomodoro you receive a notification on your smartphone, you pick up your phone, unlock the screen, click on the app, click on the notification icon and open the profile I send a notification, when you open the notification, it appears that so-and-so posted a new photo of a plate of food. Did you seriously stop your focus time to see something like this? What improvement did this notification bring to your study of Japanese? To make matters worse, you stop your focus time and start looking at other things on your smartphone, stop to go see what's happening on the street and start a snowball of distractions when you see, you've wasted your time. Then, because I know this from my own experience, you feel bad, you can't get back on track and then you abandon what you wanted, like in the case of learning Japanese you can't finish a pomodoro and then you get frustrated because you gave up on learning. This is a small example of what can be a distraction.

Interruptions always happen but most of them are not by your choice, they are external. To control interruptions you have to see where they are coming from, why they are happening. At home, someone may have rang the intercom and you have to stop answering. At work, a colleague may ask you where the file is. You have to stop your focus time. But in these cases you have to learn to readapt what you were doing, be able to have a simple cycle to get back into focus. For example, the intercom rang at your house, you were focusing on the 50-minute pomodoro to learn how to play the guitar. You go there and answer it, when you come back instead of going to the room where you were learning, you go to the kitchen or go to the computer to watch a video on the internet of a kitten playing. Cannot return to focus.

Advanced Pomodoro

A few days ago I picked up a book that I really liked called, The Pomodoro Technique: The Acclaimed Time-Management System That Has Transformed How We Work, by Francesco Cirillo. I already use the pomodoro technique, but I didn't have anything to control how many pomodoros I did that day or how many pomodoros I was going to use for this task. After reading, decide to apply, using Obsidian. I created two files, one called Pomodoro Today and the other Pomodoro 2024 . In both of them I placed two tables. I added the following columns for control, using the book as an example.

I used the Today Pomodoro file to place the tasks I wanted to accomplish that day. For each focus pomodoro completed, I marked an x on that task.

Create by author - Table Control pomodoro

The Pomodoro 2024 file, I used to place the tasks I completed each day.

Create by author - Table Control pomodoro

Note: Example images

This was really helpful because now I can visualize the effort for each task. The secret is not to set the time, because you can vary the pomodoros being 15 minutes or 45 minutes. You must mark what has been completed, you can also determine how many pomodoros you want to do in the day too, I prefer to see how many I can do for the task, it makes me feel more comfortable and I also do it more carefully, without being stimulated by a deadline and even more so if it is to study. If I can't complete it, the next day, if I have time available for the task, I'll put the same name and add the pomodoros that I complete, but of course remembering to change the date.

Furthermore, it brought a feeling of achievement, that at the end of the day I analyzed the table and could see how many pomodoros I achieved that day. Because that is an achievement, being able to focus for a short time and check your progress.


  • Pomodoro Desktop: I use it on my machine and I don't take it off anymore, it helps me concentrate on day-to-day tasks.
  • Pomodoro Smarphone: This app I use when I'm not using the computer, when I pick up a book to study or even Even to learn a new language, I activate the timer, being at the table and start.
  • Course Time Management: how to increase your productivity: This course brought me new points that I didn't know about in order to manage time.
  • The Pomodoro Technique: The Acclaimed Time-Management System That Has Transformed How We Work: This The book gave me a lot of new knowledge about the pomodoro, helping me better manage its use.
  • Study Together: This tool does not have a focus on pomodoro, but it has an integrated pomodoro, I want to share the point that helped for collective focus, what do you mean? Most of the time we study alone, we don't have someone close to us to motivate us to focus. This tool works like a classroom or even a library where there are incredible people from schools, colleges, postgraduate studies and even working. Many moments helped motivate me to continue studying, seeing people doing the same, it was a very positive motivation.

Create By Author


Controlling time is a very difficult task, but starting to control it can be quite easy. The pomodoro technique, if applied correctly, can bring a lot of benefits to your control. But remember, don't become a robot, doing everything synchronized. This type of technique or others provides a way to better manage your time, whether for studies or work. Using the pomodoro, you can use it to gain more time, to spend with family, friends and activities that don't require time control.

About the author:

A little more about me...

Graduated in Bachelor of Information Systems, in college I had contact with different technologies. Along the way, I took the Artificial Intelligence course, where I had my first contact with machine learning and Python. From this it became my passion to learn about this area. Today I work with machine learning and deep learning developing communication software. Along the way, I created a blog where I create some posts about subjects that I am studying and share them to help other users.

I'm currently learning TensorFlow and Computer Vision

Curiosity: I love coffee

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