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Kill Procrastination Guilt With The Pomodoro Technique

Italiano: Autore: Francesco Cirillo rilasciata...

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Being quite a procrastinator and a time wasting guy is not easy. Many times I feel guilty for wasting my time and my employers money. At least it looks to me I am wasting them. This procrastination guilt kept piling up day after day and the feeling was not a nice one.

When the end of the working days arrives, everything left is a bitter taste in my mouth that reminds me “I didn’t do enough today”. But even having so many unproductive days my bosses think I am still being productive.

How can this be? Are they using a different measurement?

Maybe just quantifying the amount of guilt I had after a day was not a good way to assessing my productivity. Since I tend to be quite hard with myself, perhaps I was doing a bit better than I thought.

Then it came to me, I should have my own way of measuring what a satisfactory day was. I didn’t want to lie to myself and not to base my satisfaction on other people’s opinion.

Basically I wanted two know:

I needed a way to answer two questions:

Has my day been productive enough? 

  • So I don’t need to feel guilty.

Have I been so far today productive enough?

  • So I can go home or start wasting my time guilt free.

And I found the pomodoro technique.

The Pomodoro Technique

  • Work uninterruptedly and hyper focused for chunks of 25 minutes (pomodoros). If somebody/something interrupts restart the pomodoro,
  • Take 5 minutes breaks between pomodoros and a 25 minute break after 4 pomodoros.

My goal was not to do a lot of pomodoros, but just to do enough pomodoros to be satisfied.

How To Get Rid Of Procrastination Guilt

  • Spend 2 or 3 days using the pomodoro technique and working hard.
  • Count the number (P) of pomodoros of each satisfactory day.
  • Try every day to finish P pomodoros, at least.

In my case 6 pomodoros is the minimum to not call it a wasted day. On the upper side, 8 or 9 pomodoros equate to a satisfactory day. 10 or more is a ballpark day. What is your ideal number of pomodoros?

Now when I start late my working day I know how many pomodoros I need to compensate in order to be happy.

The pomodoro technique is also useful if I want to spend part of my time on side projects, I make sure I have finished 6 or 7 pomodoros before hand. Then I can move onto something else guilt-free. It is that simple.

Now I cannot fool or punish myself anymore. And sometimes I surprise myself being more productive than expected.Interested in becoming a Scientist 2.0? Then visit my blog

  • Luke

    Very helpful.  Thank you!

  • peyron

    Hi Luke, thanks for your words, glad you liked it.

  • Julio E. Peironcely

    Hi Luke, thanks for your words, glad you liked it.

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