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Saturday
Dec052009

The Pomodoro Technique for Working Musicians

As an early regifted Christmas present from MTT contributor and new media scholar, Derek Sivers, I present this blog on general topic of time management. Instead of scloding you with a boring presentation about balancing work and life, I’ll pay forward a free technique that we can all use immediatley.
You can’t DO everything
There is a misconception that DIY artists have super powers or a band of elves helping them effectively manage their musical career. At some point, hopefully today, you’ll accept that we as musicians work harder and longer hours than almost any other professions. The time we spend, planning, promoting, playing out, and hopefully practicing, is easily a 40+ hour a week job. I’ve been very busy myself these days, but I’m sure that someone out there is even busier than I, so I won’t complain.
Games You Can Win
There is no sense in praying for that label deal to come sweep you off of your finacial feet, if you are not putting the work in everyday to be noticed. In a previous post I gave you a sample of what you can be doing daily to achieve your musical goals. An example of an artist who is consistnently burning the midnight oil is alternative R&B artist, Peter Hadar. Here is an except from my recent interview with him:
eleetmusic: Tell me about the Honors Program.
PH: The Honors Program is my marketing company. It’s close to my heart because a lot of musicians don’t have a concept of running their own business, or label, or doing their own marketing. If a label gave you a marketing budget, what would you do with it?
eleetmusic: Spend it.
PH: On what though? We’ve done so much great marketing for ourselves that a lot of people come to us for help. I wake up at five or six in the morning to work. What artist does that?
eleetmusic: Not many..
Time was one thing I feared I could never control, until I discovered the Pomodoro Technique™ in Siver’s Twitter stream. I realized a dramatic change of what I was able to accomplished in a matter of days using this exact technique.
Workin’
The Pomodoro Technique™ is a way to get the most out of time management. Turn time into a valuable ally to accomplish what we want to do and chart continuous improvement in the way we do it. Francesco Cirillo created the Pomodoro Technique™ in 1992. It is now practiced by professional teams and individuals around the world.
To start using the Technique you only need a few some simple tools:
A KITCHEN TIMER (I use this Online Stopwatch as my timer, although I hear a regular kitchen timer works the best)
A PENCIL
A TO DO SHEET
AN ACTIVITY INVENTORY SHEET
You can download and print sheets’templates from the links above.
A basic unit of work can be split in five simple steps:
Choose a task to be accomplished
Set the Pomodoro to 25 minutes (the Pomodoro is the timer)
Work on the task until the Pomodoro rings, then put a check on your sheet of paper
Take a short break (5 minutes is OK)
Every 4 Pomodoros take a longer break
Try these basic instructions closely for the next few days and report back to me how it has changed your attitudes towards work and deadlines. I’m interested in knowing if the Pomodoro Technique™ worked for you as well as it did for me.
If you are still confused, download this Cheat Sheet which should make starting today even easier. For a more in depth explination download the free eBook here.

As an early regifted Christmas present from MTT contributor and new media scholar, Derek Sivers, I present this blog on general topic of time management. Instead of scloding you with a boring presentation about balancing work and life, I’ll pay forward a free technique that we can all use immediatley.

You Can’t DO Everything

There is a misconception that DIY artists have super powers or a band of elves helping them effectively manage their musical career. At some point, hopefully today, you’ll accept that we as musicians work harder and longer hours than almost any other professions. The time we spend, planning, promoting, playing out, and hopefully practicing, is easily a 40+ hour a week job. I’ve been very busy myself these days, but I’m sure that someone out there is even busier than I, so I won’t complain.

Games You Can Win  (RJD2 ft. Kenna)

There is no sense in praying for that label deal to come sweep you off of your finacial feet, if you are not putting the work in everyday to be noticed. In a previous post I gave you a sample of what you can be doing daily to achieve your musical goals. An example of an artist who is consistnently burning the midnight oil is alternative R&B artist, Peter Hadar.

Here is an except from my recent interview with him:

eleetmusic: Tell me about the Honors Program.

PH: The Honors Program is my marketing company. It’s close to my heart because a lot of musicians don’t have a concept of running their own business, or label, or doing their own marketing. If a label gave you a marketing budget, what would you do with it?

eleetmusic: Spend it.

PH: On what though? We’ve done so much great marketing for ourselves that a lot of people come to us for help. I wake up at five or six in the morning to work. What artist does that?

eleetmusic: Not many..

Time was one thing I feared I could never control, until I discovered the Pomodoro Technique™ in Siver’s Twitter stream. I realized a dramatic change of what I was able to accomplished in a matter of days using this exact technique.

Workin’ (by Peter Hadar)

The Pomodoro Technique™ is a way to get the most out of time management. Turn time into a valuable ally to accomplish what we want to do and chart continuous improvement in the way we do it. Francesco Cirillo created the Pomodoro Technique™ in 1992. It is now practiced by professional teams and individuals around the world.

To start using the Technique you only need a few some simple tools:

You can download and print sheets’templates from the links above.

A basic unit of work can be split in five simple steps:

  1. Choose a task to be accomplished
  2. Set the Pomodoro to 25 minutes (again, the Pomodoro is the timer)
  3. Work on the task until the Pomodoro rings, then put a check on your sheet of paper
  4. Take a short break (5 minutes is OK)
  5. Every 4 Pomodoros take a longer break

Try these basic instructions closely for the next few days and report back to me how it has changed your attitudes towards work and deadlines. I’m interested in knowing if the Pomodoro Technique™worked for you as well as it did for me.

If you are still confused, download this Cheat Sheet which should make starting today even easier. For a more in depth explination download the free eBook here.

Don’s say I never gave you anything.

BTW: I hear all of your comments and requests loud and clear. The Sample Music Business Plan Coming Soon

Happy Holidays!

-eleetmusic

 

 

 

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