The Pomodoro Technique never really worked for me. Instead, Ive been using hourly objectives, which is much more suited for my brain and has helped me a lot! : ADHD


I have given Pomodoro Timers many tries since everyone seems to talk so highly of them. But truthfully, it just doesnt work for me everytime. If I finally get in a good work flow, taking a break will make me lose all that productive energy.

I genuinely can’t remember if I found this online or if I made this up myself, but the technique Im using in place of pomodoro timers has helped a lot! I call it “Hourly Objectives”.

Hourly Objectives

Essentially, at the beginning of every hour I set an objective- something attainable that I know objectively takes less than an hour to do. Then, the timer is on and I try to complete that task before the next hour comes. The trick comes in knowing it can be done within the timeframe so you can give yourself an easy win while keeping productive.

This is nice because it simulates the feeling of being pushed up to a deadline, but being less stressful because you KNOW this objective can be done in time. And if you finish that task early? Well it’s up to you! If I’m feeling that productive surge, I’ll continue to work on something new and maybe challenge myself to hit a second objective in the hour. Or if I’m feeling kinda burnt out, I’ll take a break until I hit that next hour and start the new objective.

Of course your mileage may vary here, but this has worked well with me even before I knew I had ADHD. It feels more freeing than the pomodoro technique because I always felt like the timing was too rigid and didnt always line up with my tasks for the day. With this method I feel like the focus is more on the task rather than how much time is left on the clock.

Quick Example

Here’s an example of how it fits into my work day: For my work I need to write long detailed reports. I hate it, so my ADHD brain wants to run away from it all the time. These reports take a long time, so I usually break parts of it down and use this hourly technique. Breaking it down might mean giving myself an hour to write five paragraphs, or an hour to finish a subsection of the report.

Now instead of stressing out that I have a huge report due, I can map out what needs to be done each hour. I usually end up being surprised how much I can get done within an hour and I feel less scared of the report. Honestly, it’s amazing how even little wins can add up and give a boost of confidence (which I need lol).

I’ve also used this for putting laundry away. I get so annoyed with laundry, and it usually only takes like 20 minutes. Giving myself an hour to do a 20 minute task helps frame my time better and is more accommodating to whacko brain.

Closing thoughts and TLDR

This tweet comes to mind when it comes to ADHD productivity techniques. I feel like hourly objectives helps facilitate structure without it being too overwhelming (for me at least).

We all have different things that click with our brain, so if you already do this or do something similar please let me know! Id love to hear what alternatives people use.

TLDR: At the beginning of the hour, give yourself an objective you know that can be done in less than 60 minutes. You have the entire hour to do whatever you want as long as that task gets completed. If you finish early you can go take a break, or if youre in a productive flow-state you can keep going and ride that wave! Break bigger projects into logical mini-tasks to help keep you going.

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