News

MICPA Does the Pomodoro!

 

open-thread

It might sound like a hot new dance trend, but the Pomodoro is actually a productivity technique designed to foster focus by taking more breaks throughout the workday. You might think that sounds counterintuitive – more breaks typically mean less time spent working, right? However, the Pomodoro technique emphasizes quality over quantity. According to Life Hacker, the technique requires only a timer and these 5 steps:

  1. Choose a task to be accomplished
  2. Set the Pomodoro to 25 minutes (the Pomodoro is the timer)
  3. Work on the task until the Pomodoro rings, then put a check on your sheet of paper
  4. Take a short break (5 minutes is OK)
  5. Every 4 Pomodoros take a longer break (15 – 30 minutes on average)1

But does it work? And who are these people singing the Pomodoro’s praises? To find out, the MICPA asked two members of our staff who already use the Pomodoro technique to share their experiences.

“I’ve been using Pomodoro for a few years, after being introduced to it by my husband,” says MICPA Employee Experience and Organizational Development Leader Chrissy Baginski. “When I find myself unable to focus on a single project, distracted by emails, chats or other projects, that's when this technique is most useful for me. It's amazing how 25 minutes of focus, followed by a quick break, keeps your mind sharp and on task."

According to The Financial Express, the Pomodoro technique can also help those facing a big, new challenge drum up the will to get started by overcoming the mental resistance often associated with larger projects and can also reduce burnout2. Forbes also lists the Pomodoro technique as a sound practice that can help improve mental health as studies show that coming up for air throughout the day can significantly enhance focus3.

“I started using the Pomodoro technique after one of our speakers described the process. It helps me with mundane tasks that take a lot of time. Knowing that I’ll get a break after some focus time, I find myself gaining momentum and striving to get further ahead,” says MICPA Learning and Content Development Director Dan Kolasinski. “I’ve noticed that my work is more accurate, and progress milestones are achieved more quickly using Pomodoro.”  

The trick, according to Dan, is to make the most of your break by avoiding screens. “One of the key components on your break is being totally screen free.” He advises, “Don’t look at your emails, your phone or TV because that will derail your progress and make it more difficult to pick up where you left off. That break from the screen gives your mind the recharge it needs!”

Have you tried the Pomodoro technique? Login to MICPA Connect to share your experience, tips and tricks for adapting this technique to your workflow!


References:

  1. Henry, Alan. “Productivity 101: An Introduction to the Pomodoro Technique.Life Hacker. 12 Jul. 2019. Accessed on 15 May 2021.
  2. Prapti, Rubaiya Tasnim. “Taking Short Breaks to Increase Productivity.The Financial Express. 4 May 2021. Accessed 16 May 2021.
  3. Stahl, Ashley. “5 Quick Daily Hacks for Your Mental Health.Forbes. 7 May 2021. Accessed on 16 May 2021.

Source: MICPA

 Back to List

72a1d07f-4b4c-4ced-ba57-175ef90d137d