The Pomodoro technique is a time management strategy that can help you boost your productivity to get more done in less time. It’s especially helpful for busy moms who are trying to squeeze in some work time while also taking care of their kids.
Let's face it, being a mom is one of the toughest jobs out there, and it's not always easy to find time to get work done when you have little ones at home. However, even if you can only steal away small pockets of time here and there, the Pomodoro technique can help you make the most of that limited time and get some real work done instead of just scrolling through social media or checking email.
What is the Pomodoro Technique?
The Pomodoro technique is a productivity hack that was created by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980s. The name “Pomodoro” comes from the Italian word for “tomato.” Cirillo used a tomato-shaped kitchen timer to keep track of his work sessions, and apparently, the name stuck.
The key principle of the Pomodoro technique is that you break down your work into short, 25-minute intervals, or “Pomodoros.” Each Pomodoro is followed by a five-minute break where you can then get up and stretch, grab something to drink, or just take a few deep breaths. After four Pomodoros, you take a longer break of 20-30 minutes.
The idea behind it is that your work interval is short enough to stay focused and on task while taking frequent breaks helps you regain focus without burning out.
The Pomodoro technique is especially helpful for moms because it can he used for business tasks that you’re squeezing into small pockets of time throughout the day, but it can also be used for any other task around the house, like doing laundry or tidying up an area you’ve been putting off.
Why Does The Pomodoro Technique Work?
The Pomodoro Technique Helps You Stay Focused
The Pomodoro technique works because it helps you stay focused on one task for a set amount of time. When you know that you only have 25 minutes to work on something, you're less likely to get sidetracked by checking your email or scrolling through social media. And if you do find yourself procrastinating, you can also lean into it and give yourself a full 25 minutes to indulge with the plan to spend your next Pomodoro really focused.
Unlike some other time management strategies, there's no need to keep extensive lists or make detailed plans—you simply set a timer and start working on whatever task is most important to you.
The Pomodoro Technique Minimizes Distractions
The Pomodoro technique also helps to minimize distractions because you’re on the clock! When you set that timer, your brain automatically goes into competition mode and is ready to see just how much can be done in that short amount of time.
You’re also less likely to be distracted when you know the amount of time you’re about to work in is limited. And once the timer goes off, you know that you can take a well-deserved break! But the key to setting yourself up for success is to commit to not touching your devices and ignoring or silencing alerts and notifications.
The Pomodoro Technique is Flexible
One of the best things about the Pomodoro Technique is its flexibility. You can adjust the length of your work intervals and break periods based on your needs. Sometimes, if I’m really in the zone during a Pomodoro, I’ll extend the timer for 5-10 minutes. Other times, my kids need me and I’ll shorten it.
This can be especially helpful if you have toddlers or young kids because it’s much easier to keep them entertained for a shorter amount of time. When I’m working with the kids around, I usually do a 25-minute Pomodoro followed by as long of a break as I need to give them some attention, refill their milk cups, or set up a new activity.
The Pomodoro Technique Forces You to Take Breaks
As a busy mom entrepreneur, it's easy to forget to take breaks throughout the day. We are so focused on getting things done, whether it’s for our business or around the house, that we often push ourselves too hard without giving ourselves a chance to rest and recharge. However, studies have shown that taking regular breaks can actually improve our productivity by giving our brains a much-needed break from all of the stimulation.
The Pomodoro technique forces you to take regular breaks, which allows you to come back to your work refreshed and rejuvenated. Dedicating 5 minutes every 25 minutes to taking a break may not seem like much, but it really makes a difference in my overall productivity level, and I know it will help you too!
The Pomodoro Technique Helps Break Up Boring Tasks
As helpful as it is to stay focused and get more work done in less time, it doesn’t only work for things you like to do but also for those you don’t! I’ll be the first to admit, I pretty much hate everything involved in housework and am always procrastinating because I find it so mundane (and pointless… I have three small kids who literally follow me around, leaving a wake of destruction behind them right after I clean anything…).
But I also know I can do anything for a short amount of time. So, I will often set Pomodoros for my housework or other boring tasks that are an unfortunate side effect of being an adult. It’s a game-changer!
How To Use the Pomodoro Technique
If you're not sure how to get started with the Pomodoro Method, here's a quick overview:
1. Choose a task that you want to work on.
2. Grab a notebook and pen to write down any “to-do list” items that pop up while you’re working. DO NOT stop what you’re doing to work on them though, just make a note and get back to your current task.
3. Set a timer for 25 minutes and start working.
4. Once the timer goes off, take a 5-minute break.
5. Repeat steps 2-3 four times, and then take a longer break (20-30 minutes).
6. Start again from step 1!
It’s even more satisfying when you keep track of your Pomodoros, so I made this free Pomodoro tracker for you to use!
You can download it and print it off or even take a screenshot on your phone─whatever you have to do as long as you can physically check off the boxes. It’s so satisfying!
It Really is the Best Time Management Technique for Busy Moms!
If you're looking for a hack that will move the needle forward and help you make better use of your limited time as a busy mom entrepreneur, the Pomodoro technique is the one for you. This simple but effective time management strategy can help you boost your productivity to help you get more done in less time, no matter how busy you are.
Give it a try today and see for yourself! Don’t forget to grab your free Pomodoro tracker to help get you started and easily track your progress.