yes i can!
i mentioned last week that i was going to try the pomodoro technique to try to help with my motivation/productivity problem. now, after giving it a couple days, i want to share my experience with you guys.
first though, i’ve been thinking a lot lately about why i’ve been having such a hard time getting work done. caitlin did a post recently about staying motivated (she was talking about health/fitness goals, but i think it applies here) and she mentioned that perfectionists are notorious for having trouble starting things. she pointed out that perfectionists are afraid of not doing things the right way, so they avoid doing them to avoid being imperfect.
in this case, with my paper revisions, i did feel a sense of
fear when i thought about working on it. i really did NOT want to see what all of the red revisions and notes from my advisor said. i spent a lot of time on the first draft and it was scary to know there were a lot of things that weren’t good enough in it.
anyway, back to pomodoro. it works like this: you make a list of things that need to be done. you choose the ones that you believe you can accomplish in the amount of time you have set aside for work. then you set a timer for 25 minutes. work for 25 minutes straight without allowing yourself to be distracted while you work on the first item on your list. once 25 minutes is up, you set the timer for 5 minutes and take a complete break from the work. then repeat 25 minutes of work and 5 minutes of break. after 4 of these sets, you take a longer (15-30 minutes) break.
with all of those breaks, i was a little skeptical. but guess what. it works! 🙂 at least for me! look at everything i accomplished before 2pm yesterday!
and you know what, those 5 minute breaks are enough for me to do something i really enjoy that is NOT work – reading blogs! look what i saw after my breaks:
i have not seen “0 new items” in my google reader in a VERY long time. i never would have believed i could read my whole reader and get so much accomplished in the same work day! i think it’s magic! (and yes, i really did only take 5 minute breaks!)
while i was being so busy yesterday, i also enjoyed some pretty yummy food! breakfast was overnight oats with strawberries and my vitamins.
i made a monster salad for lunch. it had pretty much everything! spinach, carrots, tomatoes, green peppers, broccoli, celery, avocado, and some garlic gold viniagrette dressing. i also threw a laughing cow wedge on there just for fun. i also had some (unphotographed) crackers and an orange.
this salad was pretty good, but i think the garlic gold dressing just didn’t go. i think i would have preferred regular balsamic vinegar on this one. i never would have thought it – i love garlic gold! oh well. today’s just has balsamic.
i’m mixing things up a bit today. my landlord is showing my apartment twice – at 11am and at 6pm, so i’m doing my workout this morning and running some errands, then going into work late so i don’t get home until after 7pm. i plan to do get a lot done at work with some pomodoro’s. seriously, if you need help staying productive, try it!
do you have some flexibility in your schedule to change up your days? do you like to?
i’m a little worried about how much i’ll get done in lab today. usually 3pm is when i hit my productivity wall. we’ll see how it goes!