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I want to try the Pomodoro Technique at work but I'm worried it will be disturbing (an alarm going off every 25 min)

Will it be disturbing for others? Can anyone suggest an improvement to make it workable.

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

I am also with others, in a computer lab.

I use headphones to not be disturbed myself, and I'm using TimeBox for Android as a Pomodoro timer. As a nice side effect, I get the buzzer in the headphones as well.

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Ha, you mean you don't have a big tomato kitchen timer in front of you ticking away and making a g-awful racket when it goes off? – eflat Feb 24 '12 at 15:28
I tried having a real egg timer first, but after a couple of good beatings I gave up ;-) – Magnus Feb 24 '12 at 20:50

I agree with Magnus that headphones can help. Some tools offer a flashing reminder as well I believe. You will also need to train people their questions can wait 25 minutes.

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I was actually just yesterday using some youtube videos for this. Here's one: No tracking or bells and whistles, but it worked pretty well for me. I'll be trying it again today. I like to mix things up, so I'll likely add this to my quiver of tips/tricks.

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I agree with the idea of an electronic timer of some kind, and headphones. I most often use a browser based timer when I'm at work - . When it times out, the browser tab is brought to the foreground, and it beeps. Simple, straightforward, and very effective.

This timer, BTW, automatically does 25 minute work and 5 minute break cycles. Refresh the page to start over.

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I used to use ear-buds plugged into my ears, but wearing them for sustained periods of time was uncomfortable. These days I'm using Tomighty, and it has a pop-up that tells you when the pomodoro/break is over, and you can minimize it to the system-tray. I have the option to wear my ear-buds if I need to hear the "ticking" and you can also disable the sounds if you want to as well. I recommend Tomighty or a similar application

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I use a vibration alarm watch. Here's the one I have, it's cheap and works pretty good.

There's a HYDRA (not sure what that stands for) option where you can set it to beep or vibrate every x number of minutes.

When you sleep, with one click you can disable HYDRA and re-enable it when you wake up.

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PomodoroApp is designed to be used in office. I used it when I mute my computer. PomodoroApp will bring it's dialog to topmost, the PomodoroApp dialog is big enough to make visible notification to you but no disturbing to your colleagues.

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Another option is to get the other team members on board with the method as well. (full disclosure, my company developed it as a side project) let's you share the link out so all members of a team can be on the same schedule. Obviously doesn't work for everyone, but a few of our teams swear by it when they are all working on something together.

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