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27

It's very easy to be distracted if you don't get some breaks once in a while but isn't 30 minutes too much? All the bosses I've had so far were very cautious about new techniques because of how "it's working fine the way it is". A 30 minutes of break is very unlikely not to be noticed and cause unnecessary conflicts with your boss and co-workers. I strongly ...


23

I don't know of any specific studies I can point to your question directly right now but: In a class of pedagogy I was told that classes should be no longer than 50m because after that focus and concentration are severely impaired, and anything beyond 1h30m does not get assimilated at all. This seems to validate that: The Effect of Class Duration on ...


13

From Pomodoro Technique v1.3 The 15-30 minute break is the ideal opportunity to tidy up your desk, take a trip to the coffee machine, listen to voice mail, check incoming emails, or simply rest and do breathing exercises or take a quick walk. The important thing is not to do anything complex, otherwise your mind won’t be able to reorganize and ...


12

While I don't have day+ breaks when reading, I do have them when writing/blogging/coding/etc. I find something that helps is to leave myself some context as to what was going on. I think this could help you with reading. You don't need a summary of each chapter; you need a way to get back in quickly. I'm thinking when you feel you are about to take a ...


9

Use a shorter long-break. Are you sure you need 30 minutes? If you're feeling that's too much time you can reduce it to the minimmum suggested of 15'. Look for activities in your to-do list While you were working on your last pomodoros, what did you feel it was important doing and forgot to schedule? You're supposed to take notes on these activities ...


8

I worked in a company for 10 years and although I was contracted for 37.5 hour weeks, the minimum ever was around 55 hours a week, and my final couple of years averaged out at 95-100 hour weeks. I hardly ever saw my kids, and spent most of my time in airports or hotels. So I left, started my own company and worked 50 hour weeks for much higher pay and ...


8

I recommend making a visual map of the key concepts in the text while you read it. This is not only good for understanding the material in the first place, but it will also quickly remind you of the concepts involved and the structure/relationships between them. One free mapping software that I like is Xmind.


6

I would expect that it depends to some degree on the type of work you're doing (and likely your personal preferences), but for me and my work it would be incredibly frustrating and annoying to have to break up my work like that. When I get into "the zone", I can easily blow through a few hours of time (and do an incredible amount of work), and having to ...


6

I'm a little surprised that nobody had anything positive to say about it. I've been using Pomodoro for a month, but I'm switching to 30/30. (I'm a freelance developer so I have the freedom to not worry about what my boss thinks about my break time routines.) A couple thoughts: Pomodoro is strictly rigid. If you get "interrupted" 20 minutes into a task, ...


5

Many people suggest at 15 to 30 minute nap, as any longer you can start falling into a deeper sleep, which can leave you feeling lethargic if you don't then sleep for your usual time (x hours) When I can get time for a power nap I tend to set my alarm for 30 minutes and that works quite well for me. Worth experimenting to see what suits you.


5

Perhaps the best is physical activity of some kind. That doesn't necessarily mean pumping iron or riding a stationary bike to nowhere...simply walking and getting out of the work environment might be enough. I'm in no way a visual artist, so I find it helpful to challenge myself with something visual: Zendoodles, origami, whatever. It just has to be ...


5

First rule of my breaks: take a moment to gaze away at the furthest point you can find (be it your room, out the window, in a mirror etc.) This rests my eyes while working on my computer. Next I try to go and get a glass of water. This helps in two ways: it gets me off my chair and moving and it keeps me hydrated.


5

In my experience, taking a break from work helps in more than a few ways. Keeps your attention levels high (drinking water recommended for breaks). Research has proven we can't focus for too long without our minds wandering off, so frequent short breaks are a way to recharge our attention-bar. Much of knowledge workers' productivity is more related to ...


4

MUST? Never. People work in a company for 3 reason; Happiness. Money Good condition. (Car etc..) One of these are enough for me working in the company. But I think, you are not happy, I assume money is not enough for you (Just thinking because of start-up company) and you don't have good conditions. So leaving or not, It's %100 up to you. But remember ...


4

My opinion is 5 minute break is not only for total context switch but for a rest too: stand up from computer, make some physical exercises, make tea/coffee/your favourite drink here, etc. I tended to do the same for sometime but noticed that I couldn't finish anything with such a schedule. What I've ended up is summing up all of these small tasks in 1 ...


3

Take a look on the polyphasic sleep forum for hints on powernapping and possibly reducing your total sleep time. Personally I like 20 minute naps. I use a white noise generator on my phone to drown out sound (it also turns off after 20 minutes with an alarm) and a blindfold. Then I close my eyes, squint while staring slightly upwards (natural REM sleep ...


3

I can't take credit for this idea but I read it on lifehacker a while ago and liked the idea so much I adopted it for all of my books (especially technical books). I can't find the original post but here is the slightly modified system I've adopted. Thanks Julian! When you start a new book: Take a piece of paper and write the Book title, author and date ...


3

I once had a therapist who firmly believed in a system called 'the 50 minute hour'. It generally applies to studying, but I don't see why it can't be used for other tasks, such as lengthy chores, or things of the home improvement variety. The idea, really, is that you apply yourself to whatever it is you're doing for a solid 50 minutes, and then complete the ...


2

Here goes a few ideas that might work: Learn how to meditate and do it for 10-20 minutes - this is very good relief for your mind. Physical activity - 20 minutes exercise. There are a lot of videos on youtube like "8 minutes abs". Playing musical instrument - even the simplest one like harmonica. Play simple offline game like Jenga.


2

Would be different for different people, but in your case, it seems you have a hard time focusing back on work again if you do something stimulating in the break, so I guess the answer here is - something relaxing, but not distracting. Listening to music, taking a nap, or a walk, or you could try meditating.


2

I also find it helpful to work first thing in the morning before doing anything else. It might be best to set up a plan for the day before you go to bed at night. Determine what time you need to start your morning routine in order to get the "urgent" and "have to" tasks done at a reasonable time. You essentially have a breakfast appointment. This way your ...


2

I agree--it's a great time of day. When I know I'm doing it, I prep the night before. Often that first "meal" for me is instant oatmeal, which can be made during the session, w/o major cognitive disruption. Or I'll have a (good, often home-made) meal/granola/etc. bar ready at my workspace if I want to avoid even the 1-2 minutes it takes to throw the ...


2

I do exactly the same - I often keep breakfast as the reward for completing a particular chunk of work. If, however, you notice your concentration going then it is probably time to have breakfast. I would suggest not going past 8am if you are starting at 5am - partly to get an opportunity to walk around - which you should try and do regularly anyway. ...


2

Aim for a 90 minute nap, or some other multiple of 90 minutes. The reason for this has to do with sleep cycles. In the average person, the first 65 minutes of sleep don't really do much for you. Yes, they make you feel less tired, but that will wear off quickly and your brain is still going to operate at the same tired level that you had before your nap. ...


2

Sometimes it is good just to free your mind but it depends how you work with your team but if your working pattern works, why to change it? If you want to be more creative I would say change the activity completely. I wouldn't say card games is the best when you worked on the computer science, in my opinion is quite close, as you still trying to thing ...


2

According to studies by Professor K. Anders Ericsson and his colleagues at Florida State University, working in 90-minute intervals maximizes productivity. Elite performers apparently work in uninterrupted sessions for no more than 90 minutes. Normally they don't work for more than 4.5 hours in any given day. Breaks should be between 20-30 minutes. So, ...


2

My rule is this: A pomodoro break must begin with me getting up from my desk, walking (even if briefly), stretching, getting water, etc. Any time left over I will use to do whatever I want back at my desk. Don't do it in the reverse. You'll never get up, and you'll find you'll get burned out easier.


1

What you could do is this. For a 5 hour meeting make 5 blocks of 1 hour each. Then have a reminder set 5 mins before the next block starts. So when you get this reminder, you have a break. So if you have set google calendar to remind you 5 mins before the next block starts, you stop the meeting as soon as you get the reminder and then have a 5 mins break. ...


1

Once upon a time, there were two man chipping wood. The one wanted to do a lot and so he just was chipping. The other man was chipping only 50 min. and then after a 10 min. break again. At the end, the first one saw, that although he did not make any breaks he had less then the other man who did breaks. So he asked him how this can be? "In my breaks I was ...


1

I'd hope being pushed into excessive hours is because a deadline is fast approaching. If so, it should be over soon. If not, the company will probably die as more employees burn out or become disgruntled, so it could be a good time to find alternative employment. Unless you already know a good lawyer, I'd advise against that route. Even 100 hour weeks ...



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