Boosting productivity with the Pomodoro Technique as a Freelance Writer
by Kira Carr
A lot of writer’s struggle with focus. Actually, this is a common issue for most people. There are so many distractions on any given day that people often find themselves wasting a lot of time and not getting any work done. This has a negative impact on several factors like stress levels, workload, and productivity.
For this article, let’s focus on writers. There are two types of writers in general. The first are writers who live off writing exclusively and this is their sole source of income. On the other hand, there are people who write but usually have another career to help pay the bills. Both groups, however, have similar risks and pitfalls when it comes to workloads and productivity.
There are so many freelance writing jobs online available today that most writers at a certain point take on more work that they can objectively handle. Having too many articles or blog posts to write can result in sloppy work and decrease in quality which can damage your brand and potentially make you lose some clients. If you have another career next to writing and a family, it can be extremely hard to make time for all the tasks you are supposed to handle within a day.
The allure of writing for many people is that you can take online writing jobs from home and that you can, with a bit of skill and luck, earn some extra cash in addition to your salary. The downside is that bad organization often leads to many sleepless nights staring at a computer screen.
There is a very handy and simple to implement technique that many people are using to improve their focus and productivity it is called: The Pomodoro Technique.
What is the Pomodoro Technique?
The Pomodoro Technique is a great effective and simple technique to organize your time and improve focus and productivity overall.
How does It work?
Pomodoro works in a way that is designed to categorize your time with 25minute windows of pure productivity. The idea is that you work with one hundred percent dedication and focus for 25 minutes on a certain task after the window closes you make a five minutes’ break. After four of these cycles it is designed to take a larger break of half an hour. The idea behind this is that you never get yourself exhausted from sitting and concentrating on one subject for too long and after that, you cannot do anything else. It is designed to help you organize your busy schedule.
What do I need for It?
The beauty of it is that you don’t actually need anything to implement this technique besides your smartphone and some good will. There are some “specific” Pomodoro apps out there but they don’t add almost any value to the good old fashioned timer on your phone. Set it to 25 minutes and get busy.
How does it help writers?
We have already discussed accepting too many online freelance writing jobs. If you happen to have too many things to write, the Pomodoro technique will definitely help you out. Plan your Pomodoro`s so that you get a handle on your workload. Divide your time into 25 minutes’ sections and assign each section a specific task to focus on. After a section for a specific area Is over just leave it be and move on to another task you scheduled in. This technique will let you better organize and plan your time and it will make you realize just how big of a time frame 25 minutes really is and how much you can get done when you truly apply yourself.
By having a set time frame for a certain activity, you are giving yourself a challenge, some positive pressure to beat the clock. You can implement all sorts of challenges to push yourself even further. For example, you can set a certain word amount written you need to reach within those initial 25 minutes. You can also optimize your writing by setting, for example, 2-timeframes for research and one for the outline. After that 2 or 3 more for the writing and one for editing. You will have a finished product much faster than you would usually do.
How does it help you in general?
The recommendation Is that you should walk for your five-minute breaks. Health issues related to sitting constantly for longer periods of time are well known and documented. This can especially be risky for people that have writing jobs from home. You are already in your home dressed comfortably, why would you take a walk or even stand up for your break when you can just continue to relax in your favorite chair watching YouTube videos. Rest your legs get some blood flowing through them and don’t look at a screen during your breaks. You will ease your body and reset your mind for another Pomodoro.
This simple trick will let you perceive your time differently during the day. It will teach you how much work you can get done in a certain period of time and you recognize when you have free spare 25minute windows that you can utilize to be productive. You can even use a slow hour on your regular job to squeeze in 2 Pomodoro`s of your freelance work and get ahead of the curb at home!
Should I Implement it?
Most definitely! Countless authors have testified about the benefits of the Pomodoro technique. It will even help you if you get writer’s block. 25minutes purely concentrating on the place you got stuck will definitely be beneficial even if you don’t push through the block from the first try. Whatever you do, structuring your time for obligations will have positive effects on your productivity.
The Pomodoro technique is a simple yet effective way to increase productivity and better your focus in this distraction heavy world. It is easy to implement and you don’t need any special tools or equipment to do it. It is applicable and beneficial if you have a full-time job in the classic sense and you write on your free time or if you are full on career writer. It will help you better organize your time and to better tackle your assignments and to finish them all in a timely manner and without wasting too much energy so you have the time and strength to enjoy the rest of your day.
Kira Carr is wedded to her position as a freelance writer and blogger at writersdepartment.com. She creates a lot of thought-provoking posts regarding useful tactics and strategies for new bloggers and freelance writers. This girl is a translator by education. She goes mad of reading American modern literature.