Posts Tagged ‘timer’

Pomodoro Timer

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A productive, academic client says that the most important thing she learned while she was writing her dissertation was to use small chunks of time during the day for her writing.  Working on her dissertation in just 30 minutes here and there allowed her to finish the project. 

What have you tried that will help you work in small chunks of time?  You’ve probably heard of using a timer, but have you heard of the Pomodoro Technique?                                                          

The Pomodoro technique has a very interesting approach to making the most of your time.   Check out this video–The Pomodoro Technique Trains Your Brain Away From Distractions

The approach is familiar, but as the title of the video suggests, you must train your brain to focus and to produce during a small, discrete amount of time.  In this video, you’re asked to choose one task and write it down, set your timer for 25 minutes, work for those 25 minutes without stopping, and then when the time is up, reward yourself with a 5-minute break.  This approach allows you to put a boundary around a small amount of time, discourages multi-tasking, and teaches you to value the small chunks of time that too often are ignored as prime writing time. 

Perhaps you’ve tried many different techniques, but you continue to put off your writing.  You need to add some accountability.  Drop me an email.  I’d love to help you keep on course with your writing goals this year.  That’s what I do! 

All good wishes,


Nancy Whichard, Ph.D., PCC
Your International Dissertation and Academic Career Coach

Nancy @ nancywhichard.com




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You’ve just returned from a trip?  What can you do to move quickly into your writing, with no resistance?

Try these steps:

1.  If you didn’t leave a clean desk, clean it now.  Sort the mail, the bills, and the magazines quickly and remove them from the desk.

2.  If you haven’t made a plan for what you will do right now (the day/night of your return), make a plan now.  Is it important to create more order for yourself?  Do you need to unpack now and do laundry? 

3.  If you aren’t going to do any writing now (the day of your return), make sure that you review where you will start tomorrow.  Be ready to start fresh on the following day. Make this a planning time— do what is necessary to eliminate email and other distractions.

4.  Now it’s time to write. Email can wait. 

5.  Open your files; breathe deeply; settle in.  This is all abut getting back into the text, but you need to slow everything down so that you can center and focus

6.  Read what you wrote during your last writing session in order to settle into your text, but gear up to write.  Be ready to move forward.

7.  Set your timer—what is the minimum length for this writing session?

Good luck!  You’re off and running.

Welcome back!

All the best,


P.S.  How’s your summer writing progressing?  Do you have any tips to share on what is working for you?  I’d love to hear from you.

Nancy Whichard, Ph.D., PCC
Your International Dissertation and Academic Career Coach

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