Today I want to focus in on a strategy many people, including myself, have found to be extremely helpful for enhancing focus and productivity while managing stress throughout the day.  And that is to break your work into segments of approximately 25 minutes with a 5-minute break. 

The official name of this strategy is called a Pomodoro, after the researcher who discovered that when people work in this manner, they are much more efficient and effective.  Similarly, when students study in this manner, they are able to focus much better and retain information that they studied at a much higher level than those who rarely take breaks.  This is because your brain needs time to consolidate the information it just to in before it’s ready to take in additional information. 

Similar to a racecar, your mind-body need to take a short put stop after an intense period of focus on either work or learning a new subject.  Just like racecars, you will emerge renewed and ready for another pomodoro after a short pit stop (aka five-minute break).  The reason for this is because just like any finely tuned machine, your mind-body can only go at full throttle for short periods of time but can quickly recover and be ready to go again. 

If you repeat this process over and over throughout the day, I believe you will be pleasantly surprised by how much you accomplished and how good you feel at the end of the day.  This is in a computer screen or book.  Without these breaks, the mind-body becomes less sharp and progressively slower over time.  As you’ve probably experienced, when you work or study non-stop for many hours straight, you typically emerge a little brain dead with time tightness in the body. 

For most people, this is a rather exhausting way to work/study and typically requires a long period to recover from.  What’s worse is that we know focus and productivity starts to diminish after approximately 25 minutes and rapidly declines after about an hour. 

So you now know there is a better way to maximize productivity and manage stress throughout the day.  The only questions is are you ready to try it?