#1: Pomodoro Technique
What it is (in 60 seconds or less): A productivity hack in which you work for 25 minutes straight on something without any distractions. When that 25-minute period is up, take a break.
I try to do 25-minute sprints, and five-minute breaks in the morning/afternoon, eight-minute breaks after 2 pm because, hi, fatigue. My favorite thing about Pomodoro, other than that it works for me, is that it’s named after the Italian word for tomato. Why? The guy who made it up used one of those cute little tomato-shaped kitchen tickers to time his tasks.
- A Primer to the Pomodoro Technique
- Manage Procrastination with the Pomodoro Technique
- Best Pomodoro apps for Android
#2: Parkinson’s Law
What it is (in 60 seconds or less): The idea that work will expand to fit however much time you’ve allotted for it.
So if you’ve given yourself a whole day to “blog”… it will take the entire day. Maybe longer. If you, instead, time block the job and write it on your to-do list as a specific directive, such as “9-10 am: Sit the ef down and write your blog about productivity,” it will happen in a much shorter amount of time—usually the amount for which you’ve planned it.
- How to Use Parkinson’s Law to Your Advantage
- Seven Ways to Use Time Constraints to Your Advantage
- How to Use Parkinson’s Law for Daily Productivity
#3: Pareto Principle
What it is (in 60 seconds or less): This one’s a numbers game that says 80% of consequences come from 20% of actions.
In terms of productivity, this is just something to keep in mind when you determine what tasks to tackle in a day. If the majority of your benefits are coming from a small portion of actions (or, for example, accounts), say yes to those actions and a #HardNo to the other things you could spend your limited time doing.
- The 80/20 Rule and How it Can Change Your Life
- Work Less and Do More by Applying the Pareto Principle to Your Task List
- The Top Four Misapplications of the 80/20 Rule
Bonus #4: Pizza
What it is (in 60 seconds or less): It’s pizza.
Because sometimes you just need to treat yo’self for a job well done… or a job not perfectly done, but done nonetheless.