17 June 2010


Just a few more thoughts about the pomodoro technique:

**In my last post I listed playing with my kids as one of my pomodoros, and it seemed like it got lumped in with all the other annoying/mundane tasks. Sad. So I just wanted to say that I do enjoy playing with them and don't consider it an annoying/mundane task, but sadly, sometimes I actually have to schedule a chunk of time just for them where I promise not to be interrupted or get distracted. That's why I think making it a pomodoro and doing it at least once, and hopefully several times throughout the day will be better for all of us.

**If you read the actual technique, you know that it is recommended that once the timer goes off, the task should be abandoned completely for a 5 minute break. This, to me, is why this technique is the opposite of overwhelming. It makes things so manageable.

"When the Pomodoro rings, this signals that the current activity is peremptorily (though temporarily) finished. You’re not allowed to keep on working “just for a few more minutes”,even if you’re convinced that in those few minutes you could complete the task at hand.The 3-5 minute break gives you the time you need to “disconnect” from your work.This allows the mind to assimilate what’s been learned in the last 25 minutes, and also provides you with the chance to do something good for your health, which will help you to do your best during the next Pomodoro."

**It will definitely take some creative application to make this work in a home setting, as all the suggestions and examples given seem to be geared toward making employees more productive in their full-time jobs. It is not unrealistic to expect someone who is at work, getting paid for doing their job to be more productive and try to minimize interruptions. It is a bit unrealistic to expect a mother with small children to work hard on tasks all day long, ignoring the interruptions, i mean children, who need her attention at random times throughout the day.

**What I'm going to try and do each day is make a list of tasks I want done. Then, instead of doing them here and there and half-heartedly all day long, which is what I have been doing, I will make each one a pomodoro to get them done efficiently and quickly. This will hopefully eliminate the guilt and feelings of unproductivity that I feel most days, because I will see things getting accomplished, and all the other time can be focused on taking care of the needs of the children, and my own needs, you know, like blogging & reading blogs, sewing, reading books, napping, cooking.

**This might not be the last post about this whole concept. Can you tell I'm really excited about it?


Jen I said...

My first thought when you mentioned playing with the kids as a pomodoro in the last part was - oh smart, I should do that. Not that you thought it was annoying. Maybe there are people who are good at that, but I am not one of them. One time when the kids were young and going to some physical therapy I told Ryan we needed to try to sit down with them for 20 minutes straight or so and work with them. He looked at me like I was crazy - like of course we would do that. But when it came down to it, neither of us could do it. It is seriously hard to sit down for a big chunk of time with your kids.


Interesting concept... I like the idea, though. I would definitely have to schedule Ethan in as a pomodoro - it's really hard for me to just sit down and play with him for a chunk of time like that and I know he would love it! :)


Ok- so my oldest sister, is about your age, maybe a little older, and she is just like you. She loves to cook, gormet, she loves to read, she knows how to think OUTSIDE the box- I really think you guys are so similar!- And - she's a terrible house keeper. She, like you- has tried SO MANY different things- read SO MANY BOOKS- on this trial- so when I read this- I thought- "I have to get Rebecca to read this!" So I called her, we read it together on the phone- a few hours later- she had downloaded the program on her kindle- and had done a few promodoro's, I am so glad you posted this- because she really needs a lifter up- she just got a divorce from her creepo husband, and has 3 girls, and she's just really needed something to lift her up, and get going- and I think this is going to be really perfect for her. To be able to see the end in sight, after 25 minutes just seems perfect for her- THANKYOU so much, for being humble, about your personal trials, and willing to share this idea with the world, to help others, rather than keeping it to yourself! Thankyou!!!!! q