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Super Tweaked Pomodoro for ADHD

I first heard about a Pomodoro about 4 years ago. I was reading a (non ADHD) website about time management and they suggested it as an effective way to stay on track.

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 80's. It uses a timer to work in 25 minute intervals and then take a 5 minute break. The pomodoro math was (25+5)x2=almost 1 hour of productivity.

He called these intervals "pomodori"-the plural of the Italian word pomodoro for "tomato", which was named that because Francesco used an old fashioned kitchen timer that looked like a tomato.


tomato timer

I liked the concept but, being ADHD, I knew there was no way I could work for 25 minutes and stay on task. I could not even do it for 15 minutes!

But I tried it anyway.

At the 4 minute mark into my first 25 minutes, I was side tracked and off doing something else for 21 minutes, being completely unproductive. Then, I took the 5 minute break anyway!

I knew the traditional Pomodoro was not for me. But, I am not one to just give up that easily. When I saw the math equation for it I wondered,"why could I not just do my own math!"

I mean, I am pretty crappy at math that requires more then 10 fingers due to my dyelexia, but I certainly could figure this out!

So, that's what I did. I ADHD tweaked it.

The Super Tweaked ADHD Pomodoro

(7+3)x3= almost 30 minutes

I decided that if I could do something for 7 minutes, and then take a 3 minute break, that would be more productivity in 10 minutes than I have ever had in my life!

Do that 3 times and you have about 21 minutes in a 30 minute time frame of actual productivity!

And you know what!?


I use a digital kitchen timer and set 7 minutes, put it in my pocket,and go to work on cleaning the house.

I stop when the 7 minutes are up and take a 3 minute break with the timer again. Then I go back to another 7 minutes of work.

Now I do almost everything in 7 minutes broken up time slots. It actually makes me work fast too, because I want to get as much of a task done in 7 minutes as I can.

Short Attention Sp....oh look cows!

I have such a low attention span, that often at the 5m:40s mark I'm actually checking the timer to see if it is still running! EVERY TIME!

That's the level of concentration I have!

And, TMO wonders why I randomly walk away or pace the room when he wants to talk for more then 5 minutes!

I have tried decluttering and cleaning programs like Flylady, and other peoples for years, and they all failed for me, because they get you to go for 15 minutes spans. With ADHD, Even that was impossible for me.

When I developed the ADDing Routine program for myself, I used what works.

THIS works. Just 7 minutes.

The best part is-with a 3 minute break, it is just enough time to make a tweet or post a picture to Instagram too, so it works well for me.

Do you think you could tweak the pomodoro to work better for you too?

Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

tweet me when you are on your 3 minute break with #supertomato :)

The SuperADDmom (7+3)x3 math is an integral part of the ADDing Routine Program

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