POMODORO TECHNIQUE – My Favorite Tool to Improve Studying and Productivity

The Pomodoro Technique is one of my favorite
techniques to fight procrastination and maintain focus and productivity throughout the day. Stay tuned for tips on how to incorporate
this into your study routine. What’s going on guys! This is Jay from MedSchoolInsiders.com. First, I want to talk to you a little bit
about the history of the Pomodoro Technique. So, it was invented back in the early 1990s
by Francesco Cirillo, I don’t know if I’m pronouncing that right. He named it the Pomodoro Technique after the
tomato shaped timer that he used to actually track his work as a university student. Since then, this technique has gained much
popularity in various productivity and self-improvement circles. So the theory behind it is that any large
task or any series of tasks can be broken down into short timed intervals called Pomodoro’s. Each is separated by a short break. This takes advantage of the fact that our
brains have limited attention spans. So, as to how to use it, the only item you
really need is a timer. You can go old-fashioned or use your phone
or computer with an app. My favorite app is called 30/30 on the iPhone. It’s my favorite because of its clean interface
and customizability thus making it easy to do the traditional Pomodoro or customize it
to your liking. More on that in a little bit. So first, choose a task or series of tasks
that you need to accomplish. Next, set the timer to 25 minutes. Continue to work on the task until the timer
goes off. Avoid constantly checking the timer. Once the timer goes off, take a short break
for five minutes. Get up during this time, do not take the break
at the same spot that you were working. I personally like getting up, holding a third-world
squat, stretching, moving around. And that was also the time to use the bathroom
and grab a refill for your water. After four Pomodoro cycles, take a longer
break of 20 minutes. Rinse and repeat. Distractions: during your Pomodoro cycles,
do your best to limit distractions. The whole point is 25 minutes of intense focus. Don’t be checking Facebook or reddit or the
Med School Insiders website on and off. Focus on the task at hand. So I personally put my phone on either airplane
mode or do not disturb mode. But be careful because ‘do not disturb’ mode
can actually affect the notifications on your timer app if you are using your smartphone
app. If someone else comes knocking for help, use
the inform, negotiate, callback strategy which was suggested by Francesco Cirillo himself. So, informed the distracting party that you’re
in the middle of something, negotiate a time when you can get back to them and call back
when you’re Pomodoro is complete and you’re ready to address their need. When to use it: I only found out about the
technique in medical school and if you’ve checked my first video ever, link above right
here, then you’ll know that it is one of the key strategies that I wish I started using
as an undergrad in college. So, I often use this when I can’t get myself
motivated to study for a subject that is either particularly dull or boring. So anyways, I get my Pomodoro app started
and I tell myself I just need to do one cycle of 25 minutes. By making this commitment small, to just do
a small amount of work, it’s easier to get started. And once I finish that cycle, it always feels
less daunting as I’ve built momentum. At this time, it’s usually not a problem to
keep moving forward with my work. I’ve also found it useful for reading textbook
chapters, going through my on key deck and getting started on background reading for
research projects. Remember though that, Pomodoro is ultimately
a productivity system to serve you, therefore don’t feel obligated to always take a break
if you’re in the groove. For longer days where you’ll be studying for
most of the day such as the day before a final exam, I recommend you do take breaks as this
sustains your stamina and prevents burnout. Sometimes though it’s best to just keep chugging
along once you’ve built momentum. I often stop the Pomodoro app and continue
my work without breaks when I’m either reviewing lectures or doing research data analysis and
writing. So, with reviewing lectures, I generally review
one lecture, take a brief break after finishing the lecture and then move to the next. These breaks feel more natural to me than
taking time breaks, but as always, figure out what works best for you. So going on to research. While Pomodoro has been conducive to background
research reading for myself, I find that the writing and the analysis part of research
requires prolonged periods of concentration and therefore I prefer to not take the break
after 25 minutes. At this time, I either modify my Pomodoro
or I just go for long stretches without taking a break. So then, going on to modifications; again,
because Pomodoro is a template to help you increase your productivity, you may want to
actually alter the timing scheme. So, for some tasks, it may be best to alter
the timing intervals from a 25 5 minute allocation, which is the default, to something like a
50/10. I’ve used the 50/10 minute intervals with
good results. Figure out what works best for you. You can change it up however you please. Again, the 30/30 app allows for flexibility
in this regard and has a great interface. Alright guys, that is it for this video. If you found any of these tips helpful, please
press the like button below. New videos every week. Hit the subscribe button if you have not already
and I will see you guys in that next one you!


  1. Muhammad Zkrallah

    March 11, 2018 at 9:30 pm

    What is your whiteboard animator

  2. Ashish Singh

    March 23, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    What application did he use to make this video? Thank you.

  3. Ollie k

    April 4, 2018 at 9:39 am

    Going to give it a try.

  4. OneManArmy

    April 14, 2018 at 11:06 am

    I like your drawing man and great vid btw.

  5. imapineapple15

    April 26, 2018 at 8:17 pm

    For the ultra lazy, set a timer for 15 minutes to do boring work, then 30 mins break. At least you get something done

  6. Konjengbam Nongdamba

    May 10, 2018 at 5:46 pm

    Thank you

  7. Rando Me

    May 12, 2018 at 5:42 am

    Phone fk

  8. Rando Me

    May 12, 2018 at 5:43 am

    My life is fked

  9. Patrice Patrick

    May 31, 2018 at 8:14 pm

    Loved this! Looked for the 30/30 app you mentioned but didn't quite find it. Do you have a link for us? Thx!

  10. Ariyan Das

    June 8, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    Thanks bro

  11. Rando Me

    June 11, 2018 at 4:17 am

    I’m surprised I managed to study for 3 hrs

  12. PulseStars

    June 20, 2018 at 9:52 pm

    study 25 min
    study 25 mi
    study 25 m
    study 25
    study 2
    studies 2 min

  13. Luca Bortolotti

    June 21, 2018 at 10:29 am

    I have a final tomorow =_=

  14. Ankit Dubey

    June 24, 2018 at 10:40 am


  15. C M

    July 25, 2018 at 1:26 pm

    You’re a winner!!!!!

  16. C M

    July 25, 2018 at 1:26 pm

    If you’re interested in learning more studying techniques like this one, you should definitely check out “learning how to learn” on coursera.

  17. Javonne Porter

    August 9, 2018 at 3:09 pm

    watching this in my 5 min pomodoro break 🙂

  18. NewBeginner27

    August 16, 2018 at 9:15 am

    Very good summary of the technique itself and personal modifications to fit own preferences.

  19. N J

    August 20, 2018 at 5:41 pm

    So when changing the timing scheme: are you supposed to double the times (so that it stays in hours and half-hour slots) – or do you keep adding 25 minutes work and 5 minutes to your liking to lengthen a scheme?

    Questioning this, because for example:
    extending from 25 to the 50 min. work & 5 to 10 min. break, is both of the options I described above.. 🤔😥

  20. Zion Luke

    September 6, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    Listening to focus binaural beats helps me stay concentrated as well during these 25 minute study sessions (:

  21. Alya Arianna

    September 16, 2018 at 5:04 pm

    It means that for 4 pomorodos are the same tasks?… So we have to repeat the same task for 4 times?

  22. Alex Diaz

    September 21, 2018 at 3:32 am

    Should I be listening to soft classical study music while using this technique?

  23. Aryaman Raina

    September 27, 2018 at 2:17 pm

    Anyone who's here from KP ? 😉

  24. Rounak Singh Buttar

    September 29, 2018 at 9:01 pm

    You need to have some music in the background, doctor 🙂

  25. Thomas Alkærsig

    October 1, 2018 at 1:00 am

    Wow, this guy is a seriously good artist, I think the world might have lost out on a great animator 🙂

  26. JM S

    October 4, 2018 at 4:34 pm

    Dear Med School Insiders, I found this video useful and interesting, but I wonder if you could make a video on how to structure pauses between learning phases. Is there any technique? Are there different kinds of activities to distinguish between? Do you delay some leisure activities to specific leisure times?

  27. a blue diamondco

    October 13, 2018 at 10:38 pm

    It's hard for me to follow the timer.. basically I let it run and do my own thing. lol is there solution for my lazy ass

  28. Book NCERT

    October 14, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    45 / 15 best for me

  29. Sina Nami

    October 15, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    What was the app name?

  30. Bea bL

    October 19, 2018 at 8:46 am

    i want to be succesful i want to study and i want to use these techniques but im too lazy to start ..

  31. Aaron Lawrence

    October 20, 2018 at 8:57 pm

    hey man
    i wonder….do you have to switch subjects after your 5 min break or do you continue studying the same subject you were studying in your 25 min study period??

  32. F

    October 21, 2018 at 10:50 am

    Thank you you really saved my life

  33. Goosey Geese

    October 28, 2018 at 1:29 am

    i work for 5 mins and tehn take a 25 hour break lmao

  34. nein 3

    October 28, 2018 at 1:20 pm

    Dirty, Dirty. Clean Interface.

  35. ٠ KING KONG

    October 30, 2018 at 10:30 am

    Wonderful its works . In the past i study about 13 hours non stop but in reality i studied not 13 houra but like 2 hours or less.

  36. Emila Vallée

    November 2, 2018 at 8:58 pm

    Thanks doc

  37. Anastasia - なな

    November 18, 2018 at 5:11 pm

    Sounds good, I'll give this one a try. Thanks for sharing!

  38. wolverine logan

    November 22, 2018 at 7:47 pm

    Hi, Please share Iphone 30/30 Application link. Many Thanks!

  39. Yuuki Xx

    November 25, 2018 at 5:39 pm

    Not procrastinate, how if the task itself require longer than we think like it need 6 hours to finish??

  40. Yuuki Xx

    November 25, 2018 at 5:41 pm

    How about if i solve math problem, and not know the answer. And finding the answer itself require 2hours??

  41. Be1smaht

    November 29, 2018 at 2:38 pm

    Your are in med school. I'm in med school. Does this work for med school for 5 exams one week

  42. Renand Enayo

    December 10, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    so, no one's gonna ask how the hell did he draw a perfect circle at 1:11 by hand?

  43. Churtub

    December 11, 2018 at 7:35 pm

    I can’t seem to find the 30/30 app you were talking about :/

  44. Cherry

    December 12, 2018 at 10:46 am

    Thanks for this video; it's nice and informative

  45. Ria Hill

    December 14, 2018 at 6:16 pm

    Omg I use to get NOTHING done because I would try do something for like 2 hours straight ugh. But after I found this strategy I can get soooooo much done!!! Love it!

  46. Corey Grandmaison Archive

    December 17, 2018 at 7:01 pm

    What app do you use????

  47. Ju57man

    December 25, 2018 at 12:34 pm

    Help me, please! People using this technique when you have time to eat? During a long break? Do you count the time when you eat? When I am eating, I watch YouTube, but after food, I go on to watch YouTube. What should I do?
    P. S.
    I am studying English

  48. Mr Brown

    December 25, 2018 at 3:59 pm

    I just tried this technique (without even know its name lol) and now Im curious, why this technique worked? I mean in terms of psychology/human brain. I've been searching the reason/answer for this

  49. Vineeth Paul

    December 29, 2018 at 3:29 pm

    Study straight for 25 min
    Take break for 5 min
    The second part is easy..the problem is with the first step..

  50. Vineeth Paul

    December 29, 2018 at 3:29 pm

    If i could study straight for 25 min
    I wouldnt be watching this video in the first place

  51. BrokenLioness

    December 31, 2018 at 6:24 pm

    This is really cool! I never knew it was a technique, I have been doing something similar (45m work / 10m break then back to work until I was done- no extra long breaks) with house work and big projects at home. I am going back to school for a career change and this is a great technique I wouldn't have transitioned to studying. Thanks for posting this!

  52. Saumya Jaiswal

    January 1, 2019 at 5:26 pm

    He sounds like Thomas Frank.

  53. Xayah

    January 7, 2019 at 6:53 pm

    Two days ago i managed to study
    11pm -5am
    Since I was a kid i like and weirdly get hyped to do art works studying cleaning at night time .-. Why is that
    And dead sleeping during the day.
    Is that healthy or a good time to study at all?

  54. ant loupe

    January 9, 2019 at 2:02 pm

    Very useful! Thank you very much for these precious suggestions!

  55. Alex Harrison

    January 9, 2019 at 8:00 pm

    I find 5mins study and 25mins alcohol break works best.

  56. Lindseys LifeNstyle

    January 23, 2019 at 1:07 am

    This was so helpful!

  57. Sarto Nino

    January 24, 2019 at 1:04 pm

    is the 30 minute additional to the 5 minute break after the fourth pomodoro, so its 35 minute break?

  58. TomTwo

    January 26, 2019 at 8:32 am

    Pomodore technique has been really useful to me! "Productivity" is one of those things I'm absolutely horrible at, but with this technique I've managed to get started.
    Only, when I started doing pomodore technique, I felt intimidated by the 25 mins. So, I cut it down to 15 mins work and 3 mins break. It worked really well; I got 1 hour of studying in, and it didn't feel overpowering. Gradually, I've been increasing the work time from 15 mins to 16 mins, then 18 mins, and so on.
    It's definitely a study technique I'm very keen on!

  59. X X

    January 27, 2019 at 3:13 am

    “third world squat"??? seriously???

  60. Appltron

    January 30, 2019 at 9:58 am

    Good handwriting= Bad doctor

  61. Cassandra Dabling

    February 6, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    Great video! Thank you, I am teaching myself Japanese and I am not great at focusing. I am going to try this method and see if it helps. 👍 👍

  62. Ragib Abid

    February 10, 2019 at 7:39 am

    You recommended a 25 minute work then 5 minute rest cycle. Is there a problem if I edit the cycle? for example a 15 min work 5 min rest? [ I seem to have a very small attention window]

  63. Rae Sunshine

    February 11, 2019 at 3:40 pm

    Okay why an app for such a simple tip? 😕


    February 19, 2019 at 2:52 pm

    If you love what you do you don't need break every 25 minute. When i am making music i can concentrate for 9 10 hours, when i am doing college studies i can't concentrate more than 10 or 15 minutes.

  65. RudG

    February 21, 2019 at 3:59 am

    the problem with me is that 5 minutes is just not enough i try to walk around but that not really a break, if i play video games for 5 mins i end up playing for an hour. What would you recommend doing in the 5 minute breaks that is both satisfying and will prevent increasing the break time/procrastinating ?

  66. BFF LOVE!29:)

    March 5, 2019 at 10:14 am

    i got an ecam tomorrow, hence this AHAHAHA

  67. SHA NU

    March 7, 2019 at 4:41 pm

    Do not use time for pomodoro.cut the task down and finish.do not look at the time

  68. Business Wholesale Market

    March 15, 2019 at 6:49 pm


  69. Akash Goel

    March 16, 2019 at 7:00 am

    Man, the drawing animations are so distracting!

  70. Marzooq Asghar

    March 30, 2019 at 2:41 am

    I think the smartest method to defeat procrastination is to get your pet to "tear" up your homework/assignment, who's with me

  71. WahranRai

    April 23, 2019 at 12:13 pm

    Your animation is disturbing !
    Shall i listen to your explanation or watch your animation !!!!

  72. DailyMel

    May 8, 2019 at 3:40 am

    omg I used this today but 2hrs/30min & didnt know it was actually a technique until now!!! wow.

  73. My_name_ Is_invalid

    May 9, 2019 at 4:48 pm

    My teacher sent me this ☠️☠️

  74. Sashank Siwakoti

    May 14, 2019 at 1:24 pm

    yeah ,you
    definitely should not activate "Do Not Disturb " mode ,this one time i did and i went on studying for the whole day. HELL!

  75. Leafie YT

    May 18, 2019 at 1:56 pm

    the 30/30 app works on android to

  76. Gunz Gaming

    June 1, 2019 at 6:35 pm

    What should we do when the lecture goes for 2-3 hours ?

  77. Shashank Gupta

    June 2, 2019 at 12:52 am

    don't use a phone for Pomodoro. once you pick phone it causes distraction. better to buy a Pomodoro or use a sports stopwatch for this purpose.

  78. Vladimir Peter

    June 3, 2019 at 7:47 am

    pomodoro technique 😂 a.k.a common sense. people just take intuitive things and brand them as if they invented something .

  79. Bashir Rostom

    June 3, 2019 at 10:25 am

    i get sleepy any tips

  80. Vahid Masrour

    June 3, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    Clrea, to the point. Thanks!

  81. Duc Nguyen

    June 8, 2019 at 7:11 pm

    dont be checking facebook ,reddit and MED SCHOOL INSIDERS0,words to live by LOL

  82. rexylem

    June 11, 2019 at 5:51 pm

    3:10 pomodoro technique for anti-procrastination


    June 13, 2019 at 12:41 pm

    1980s NOT 1990s!

  84. That One User

    June 15, 2019 at 5:29 pm

    I do 25/10 because I need longer breaks or else my brain will feel like it's fried and I'll feel unmotivated the rest of the day. Anyone else have this problem and/or does it get better??

  85. Shahrukh Khan

    June 18, 2019 at 3:02 pm

    Thank u sir

  86. miamiguel

    June 19, 2019 at 1:25 am

    I couldn't find the iPhone app. Is it under another name or is it gone?

  87. Casually Matthew

    June 22, 2019 at 2:03 pm

    The pomodoro technique is really effective yet so simple. I use it when studying for exams.

  88. thumbs up :D

    June 22, 2019 at 10:55 pm

    plz how is this video making technique called?

  89. laura rocio albitres gutierrez

    July 6, 2019 at 5:57 pm

    Thank u so much. I haven't done the pomodoro technic but I'm looking forward to achieving it

  90. Mubeen Baig

    August 7, 2019 at 1:49 pm

    Thank you for this video

  91. Bojozkie Ramirez

    August 13, 2019 at 8:41 am

    You, yes you who's reading this will pass the exam that you will take

  92. Yo no sé tampoco

    August 14, 2019 at 9:09 am

    I enjoy this kind of videos similar to the topics I also mention in Spanish on my channel. Thanks

  93. Lost Tinks

    August 16, 2019 at 3:59 am

    Just in case anyone is wondering if this actually works or not, i just started using this technique and it works perfectly on me. I can cope with longer studying periods and i remember a lot more from what i studied rather than cramming everything in a 3hours studying without a break. So, i really recommend using this technique no matter what subject you are revising and if you are still new and prolly you don't understand about the technique, there are actually a certain youtubers who do "study with me – promodoro techniques," so they not only guide you, but also studies with you throughout the whole time. I hope this helps!

  94. meropale

    August 26, 2019 at 5:15 am

    I tried this technique today and it worked very well for me. The reason is that I am forced to work on jusr one task during a session. I tend to jump around from task to task, or get overwhelmed by tasks so I end up just not doing anything. This also works really well with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy where you commit to doing something and don't let your feelings about the task deter you from completing it. I've tried the Pomodoro technique before but haven't really made it a habit…yet.

  95. SummahGeym

    September 4, 2019 at 3:17 pm

    Tried this last year in my freshmen year, didn’t work. But I’m trying it again now, because I really want to change my bad habit in procrastination and you gave a clear instruction on how to do it. Because I always end up using ny phone for 25 minutes than studying in that time span. Hahahaha but I really wanna get an A and be at least productive for a day. Thanks!

  96. Xatia Naroushvili

    September 6, 2019 at 6:30 am


  97. Fatima G

    September 7, 2019 at 10:47 pm

    Are we supposed to finish the task within 25 minutes?

  98. LQxN BNN

    September 9, 2019 at 1:06 pm

    this was typed out not written

  99. Ali Raza

    September 15, 2019 at 9:52 am


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