Pomodoro for Bloggers (How to Squeeze Productivity out of Every Minute)
by Rasheed | on March 22, 2012
Pomodoro for Bloggers
I recently stumbled upon a method of productivity called “The Pomodoro Technique.”
(You may be wondering why there’s a pic of a tomato–pomodoro means tomato in Italian)
While Pomodoro is a really excellent method to apply in your every day life, this blog post is how you can use Pomodoro in terms of the blogging aspect.
Let’s take a look.
“Pomodoro is such a funny name”
I agree. It does sound kinda weird.
What’s weirder is that you’ll start saying things like, “I’m in the middle of a pomodoro!”
So what is a pomodoro?
A pomodoro is an atomic unit of time that can’t be divided any smaller. I say atomic because an atom can’t be split into any smaller parts (elec-wha?), and a pomodoro similarly can’t be any smaller. Therefore, you can’t say something like “a half of a pomodoro” without sounding like a madman and being sent to the funny farm.
A pomodoro, at it’s simplest definition, is a 25 minute work session, followed by 3-5 minutes of break.
That’s a pomodoro.
What’s important about using a pomodoro is that when you start a pomodoro, you don’t break it. Ever.
In order to use the pomodoro technique, you need… a timer. Put that cell phone away, you won’t need it. Go to the nearest store and get a kitchen timer for 99 cents. Not an electric one, the kind you wind up and you hear it go “tick tock tick tock” over and over again.
So get that kind of timer, and when you want to start working, wind that sucker up and put it at 25 minutes.
Here’s the rules for a Pomodoro (from the handbook):
- A Pomodoro consists of 25 minutes plus a five minute break
- After every four Pomodoros comes a 15-30 minute break
- The Pomodoro is indivisible. There is no half or quarter pomodoro.
- If a Pomodoro begins, it has to ring.
- Protect the Pomodoro. Inform effectively, negotiate quickly to reschedule the interruption, and call back the person who interrupted you as agreed.
- If an activity lasts more than 5-7 Pomodoros, break it down.
- If an activity lasts less than one Pomodoro, combine it with other small activities.
- Results are achieved Pomodoro after Pomodoro.
- The next Pomodoro will be better.
Those are the rules for the Pomodoro technique. There’s been lots of research done on the technique so try it yourself before trying to reinvent the wheel
Anyway, when using the Pomodoro technique for blogging, here are some things you want to consider.
- Use one Pomodoro for research. Look into your subject matter and learn what you’re going to write about. You can also add keyword research into this. While doing research, also start to outline and brainstorm your post. If/when you find anything relevant, copy the text, copy the source, and just paste it into your blog post, don’t worry about formatting.
- Using your outline, start writing. Don’t stop to find cool pictures. Don’t stop to find a cool quote. You did that already. The writing process may take anywhere from 1-2 Pomodoros. Use one Pomodoro for simple posts, and two Pomodoros for more in-depth posts. If your post takes any more than 2 Pomodoros, you may want to analyze how you are spending your time or whether or not your blog post should be split up into smaller portions or even expanded upon into an eBook.
- If you finish your blog post and there’s still time left on the Pomodoro, revise. Check your links. Check your grammar. Read through your blog post and ask yourself if it makes sense. You can also use the time at the end to do your meta data, categories, tags, etc.
Here’s something important: Once a week, you want to set aside 1-2 Pomodoros for blog planning. Brainstorm ten blog posts that you’d want to write about. Why ten, and not seven? Because we don’t live in a perfect world. Sometimes you may think the blog is a good idea, but then when you start writing, you may say, “Damn, that blog idea sucks!”
And even if that doesn’t happen, at least you’ll have some extra blog posts.
Action Steps: Becoming a Pomodoro Pundit
- First, learn the Pomodoro technique in general. Read the handbook (Set aside 2 Pomodoros to read it). Learn how to apply it in your every day life as it applies to work. If you find yourself habitually procrastinating, try to Pomodoro technique for 30 days before dismissing it as “not working.”
- Once you get the Pomodoro technique down, use 1-2 Pomodoros per week (maybe every Saturday or Sunday) to plan out your blog posts. Plan at least ten posts for the upcoming week.
- When you start “blogging” time, use one Pomodoro for research/outline, one or two Pomodoros for writing the post, and one Pomodoro for SEOing your post (as well as building backlinks and sharing).
Apply the Pomodoro technique to your blogging and see how much more organized your posts are, and how much better you feel about time!
Moving onto you
Have you tried the Pomodoro technique? Like it? Hate it? I’d love to hear your thoughts…
In peace, love, and prosperity,
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