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Feeling like you have too much work and not enough time? Brain having fatigue from class and can’t focus? Don’t know how to work effectively to get everything done? If you answered yes to any of these questions then I have the secret professors HATE (not really) that you know:

The Pomodoro Technique for Studying

Some of you may have heard of it and others are probably wondering what this funky looking word is all about. I don’t really know why it’s called pomodoro (probably the name of whoever made it) but the technique is pretty simple:

Pomodoro Steps

  1. Work for 25 minutes really focused on work
  2. Take a 5 minute break to walk, stretch, snack, etc (no phones)
  3. Repeat 4 times
  4. Take a 30 minute break
  5. Repeat as many times as you want/need

But Why?

Seems kinda counter intuitive to take so many breaks, but it’s all about longevity. If you’re not cramming work right before the deadline (because you’re a good student and don’t procrastinate), you want to be able to do high quality work for a long period of time. Personally, working for multiple hours straight makes me tired, feel sluggish, and then I don’t produce good work. Taking the micro breaks helps because you get a chance to relax and then go back (think of HIT training for my gym-rats). The longer breaks are good because then you can do something fun like watch YouTube, scroll IG/Twitter, or whatever else helps you relax.

Bonus: An App that Does it For You

Setting a timer and constantly resetting it seems like a bit of a hassle (hey I’m trying to be efficient, that’s why I’m an engineer) so there’s apps that have this schedule built in so all you have to do is set it and forget it. My favorite is “Focus Keeper”, and you can find many more by just searching pomodoro timer on Google Play/the App Store.

Happy Studying!

Timothy Harrington