As a freelancer or a business owner, productivity is essential.
It helps your business run smoothly and keeps those stress levels low. The good news is that there is a system that will help you become more productive and create a more structured workflow.
Using this system — Pomodoro Technique, you will be able to focus on your work while having the benefit of taking enough breaks in between.
In your usual workday, you will have 25 minutes that are focused on your work alone and another 5 minutes for your break – rinse repeat all day.
Having this kind of approach, you will be able to absorb all the information without having to worry about getting mentally tired right away. These apps will help you to manage your work and break time properly, which is beneficial for your productivity.
This technique was created by Francesco Cirillo when he was still in college. He was one of those students who was continually studying for his exam – and getting distracted.
He decided to create a technique. Using his tomato-shaped timer, he tried to focus on just studying for 10 minutes straight and have a short break after those 10 minutes. After that, he realized that it’s effective. With this, he continued to formulate the idea, created a framework and eventually he called this technique the Pomodoro Technique.
Pomodoro is an Italian term for tomato, which is based on the tomato-shaped timer that he used during the first time he used the technique. And after four to five repetitions of the method with 25 minutes focused period and 5 minutes short breaks, you will then be allowed to take a break for 20 or 30 minutes.
The breaks that you are doing now and then is what makes it useful. It refreshes your mind – and gives you a chance to hydrate correctly. At the same time, the 25 minutes of entirely focused work is making your mind even more active because it encourages you to finish a specific task within that limited period – Parkinson’s Law, but to your benefit.
Check out this podcast on Pomodor from The Habit Coach Ashdin Doctor.
There are several time lengths that you can use when you’re practising the Pomodoro Technique, and here are some of it:
- Start with setting up your timer into 25 minutes
- Work within those 25 minutes
- Once the timer rang, take a break for 5 minutes
- And every four full focused periods, take a more extended break like 20-30 minutes
With this, here are ten best Pomodoro timer apps that will help you get started with practising this technique:
There are instances that you have numerous clients all at once. And being a freelancer who has to deal with all of them, it is sometimes hard to focus on doing everything that is asked of you, especially when you are just new to the freelance world. With that being said, this app is a perfect help for those juggling clients.
This app can be used as a timer when doing the Pomodoro Technique, which you can customize the time length on each Pomodoro, or you can just use it as a time tracking device.
With its simple and minimalist style, it will not be difficult for the newbie to navigate the app. Once you are done with your Pomodoro session, the time will be automatically connected to the relevant client – minimizing your admin work.
The app has a free version which allows you to have 20 Pomodoro work periods every month. An individual plan of $2.99 every month that has up to 200 Pomodoro every month, and a professional plan which costs $4.99 every month that allows you to have an unlimited Pomodoro, client tracking, and data export functionality.
If you are already practising having to manage your time wisely, this app is perfect for you.
You can easily plan out what task you want to finish right away. The duration of each session and breaks is totally up to you and is very convenient since it also allows you to switch from different lists according to the time management app that you created.
It is built with a variety of task management tools such as Trello, Asana, Todoist, etc. Integration with Zapier is possible, and that will allow you to create an event on your Google calendar once your time ends.
Not only that, but with its reporting options, you will be able to share and filter your data. With its easy to use interface, you can just put your to-do list on the system without taking so much of your time.
The app has a free starter plan that has two native integrations and a month of data reports. But if you want to access more integration and reports, you need to subscribe to its monthly plan which costs $2.29 every month.
This app has features that are a combination of Kanban and Pomodoro. This will allow you to manage time-tracking with the help of Pomodoro, which you can easily access using your task board. Just like other time-managing devices, it will enable you to customize the lengths of each time. The uniqueness of this app is that it offers statistics on all of your activities. And just like PomoDone, it is also integrated with Zapier.
They have a version with an unlimited task and boards, the Pomodoro timer, and productivity reports. They also offer a Premium Plan, which allows you to attach files, priority support, and third-party integrations just like Zapier.
This app is available online, Windows, macOS, Google Chrome, iOS, and Android. It is a combination of a Pomodoro timer and a to-do list app. The app is simple to use, especially if you want your task to be correctly categorised and organised.
Being a combination of organiser and Pomodoro timer, you can then use the app as your timer every time you set a task that needs to be done. It can also track your stats so you will be able to know what day you’re most productive.
The basic plan is free with a to-do list already included as well as the Pomodoro time. It also has a Pro plan which costs $3.90 every month and customized timer durations.
Available on both Android and iOS. It doesn’t have a website or a desktop version. But this is very simple and convenient since you can instantly use it without having to sign up or register.
The app’s function depends on the mobile phone that you are using. If you are using an iOS, you can use the Pomodoro timer that comes with the app as well as a to-do list, but it does not have a calendar feature which Android users have the privilege to use.
The app also generates reports which will show you your productivity throughout the day.
The app has a free version on Android, and it also has a Pro version which costs $2.99.
Focus list is available on Mac and iOS. It is simple and easy to use. It shows your to-do list and also the Pomodoro timer. However, one of its downsides is you cannot plan your week, but you can set it up each morning.
The app doesn’t have a free version. It is $4.99 in the app store.
This app is available on both iOS and Mac. Just like other apps, this serves as a Pomodoro timer and a to-do list for its users. This app also has a log which you can use to monitor your productivity which you can download for your records and invoicing.
The app is free on iOS, which offers you everything except the cross-device syncing that the app provides. If you want to experience the cross-device syncing, you can opt to avail the Be Focused Pro iOS app. Which costs $1.99 and the Be focused Pro macOS app, which costs $4.99.
(this is the one I use).
Just like Pomodoro, it is only available on the web. With its basic and simple interface, you can use it right away without having to sign-up or register. One of the great things about this is that it is beneficial, especially when you are working with a team since you can sync the times along with all your other team members.
It offers three different options. The usual 25 minutes Pomodoro timer. It also has the custom mode that allows you to customize how long you want the time to run. And finally, the kitchen mode that serves as a timer. The great thing about this tool is that it is free to use.
Read about a personal experience: How Pomodoro Has Made Me More Productive, Rachel who writes at CoffeeCakeKids.com and TheFreelancerBlog.co.uk, as well as working with numerous clients has used it to improve productivity and uses Marinara Timer.
The app is available on Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Chrome extensions. Another tool which is perfect for those who have many tasks that need to be done.
This app can also be used like a Pomodoro, and it is straightforward to organize every task that you will do. The interface is simple and is an email like style which can be perfect for those who like to organize their tasks. It also allows you to add notes on each of your tasks. And just like any other apps, this also produces reports that you can use as your reference.
The app itself is free, but they also offer the Premium version, which costs $10 with all the features like sync, cloud backup, detailed statistics, and unlimited projects.
The apps that are recommended all have the same factors that made them to the list. These are the convenience of use, on which all should be simple and easy to understand since it is the whole point of the Pomodoro Technique.
The integration, in which the apps should be able to integrate to other apps to create less hassle and to be more productive.
One of these added features is the stat tracking which will make the consumer reach the goal that they are aiming for. For this instance, it’s productivity. And lastly, its affordability, in the sense that you are getting what you have paid for. The amount of money that you will be spending should be worth it with all the features that the apps can offer.
If you are someone who prefers simple and easy to customized workflows, you can also try using Zapier to create a Pomodoro workflow. It can be used as a browser extension since this one has two internal tools — the Push and Delay.
To use this method, you just have to:
- Install the extension (Zapier Chrome)
- Login and click make a zap on the menu located on the left part of the screen.
- Select Push by Zapier for the trigger app. And then for the trigger event, select the New Push that can be found on the dropdown menu. Then select Continue. Just follow the instructions that the site will give to you.
- Click Delay by Zapier for your action app. Click Delay For on the dropdown, and click Continue.
- Input the duration of time that you will be using for your focus session and click Continue.
- Add this on you Zap, and then choose an app where you prefer to have the notification once the time runs out. Once you did all the steps, name your Zap and turn it on. Just repeat the steps for your breaks. After you set it up, select the Zapier icon on your browser and select the timer where you want to start.
The Premium subscription for this starts at $20 every month.
If you are going to use this technique, keep in mind that it may not work for everyone. Everyone has their way of being more productive, and this technique is just one of those that you can try if you are looking for something new to boost your productivity.
Many of us thrive on light structure and using Parkinson’s Law in our favour – by setting our own deadlines. When you use a timer, deadline date, or reminders you are more likely to reach your goals in an effective manner.
Prices vary between UK, EU & USA.