Be More Productive with the 50/10 Method: Tips for Sprinters, Not Marathoners

Do you feel like you're always working, but never getting anything done? If so, you need to try the 50/10 method. This simple productivity hack can help you get more work done in less time. The 50/10 rule says work for fifty minutes; rest for ten minutes. This may not seem like a lot, but it can make a big difference in your productivity. I stumbled upon this method when I was looking for a way to get more work done during the inevitable work-from-home period. So here's how I managed to get the most out of the 50/10 rule.

50/10 rule is for sprinters, not for long-distance runners

The 50/10 rule is intended for individuals who need to complete a large project in several short bursts. If you're a person who generally works on things for 6–8 hours at a stretch, this method may not work for you. The true power of this approach lies with the 50-minute sprint. You may fool your mind into thinking you've completed all of them one by one before losing concentration by breaking down an activity into sprints.

50 minutes?

According to the research, a 50-minute time period is ideal for concentrated work. You might argue that the Pomodoro technique achieves the same goal. That is true in certain ways, but when you are interrupted every 25 minutes, it will be harder to maintain the work momentum.

How to Put the 50/10 Rule to Work for You

1. Recognize your flow states, which are the times when you have the most energy.

For some people, this may be in the morning; for others, it may be at night. If you work best in the morning, start your workday with a 50-minute sprint. If you work better at night, save your sprints for then. The key is to work when you have the most energy and focus.

2. Break down larger tasks into smaller chunks and break them down into 50-minute sprints.

For example, if you need to write a report, break it down into smaller tasks like research, writing, editing, and formatting. Then work on each task for 50 minutes.

After each 50-minute sprint, take a ten-minute break to rest and recharge. During your break, you can do something relaxing like reading or going for a walk. Once your break is over, it's time to start your next sprint.

3. Create a set of criteria for each sprint, including an entry and exit condition.

It's vital to have an end in mind while beginning a project. Define the start and finish states of each part carefully when laying out a chunk. The start of a writing sprint, for example, might be coming up with an idea for the article. That sprint's conclusion can be used as the basis for the article. Having a starting and ending to each sprint helps you to stay focused. It pushes you to complete the task in some way during that time limit. As a result, you'll get a little dopamine boost so you can feel good about your tiny success.

4. If you're working on a sprint, don't allow yourself to be sidetracked.

When you're in a rush, it's tempting to be sidetracked by everything from work to family matters. There are things you can do to maintain your focus. Putting your phone into silent mode, avoiding social media, and working in a distraction-free environment can help you stay on task. If you need to, set a timer so you can keep track of your work time and break time.

5. Listen to music that aids in the concentration of your job.

When you need serious focus and concentration, there are music tracks to listen to. If you search for "mood: work focus" on Spotify, you'll find an excellent collection of work-friendly tunes. You can also look for focus-enhancing playlists on other music streaming platforms.

Once it's a break what to do?

That is for you to decide. However, here are a few things I attempt during my 10-minute break. I walk around the apartment, grab a snack or drink, meditate for a couple of minutes, listen to music, read an article (non-work-related), or talk to my partner or friends. I find that getting away from work during the break allows me to come back feeling refreshed and ready to work again.

It might be hard at the beginning

The 50/10 method might be hard to stick to at first. It takes time and practice to get used to working in sprints. However, once you get the hang of it, you'll find that this is an excellent way to work. And if you need a little extra motivation, remember that this method can help you get more work done in less time.

So give it a try! What do you have to lose?

The 50/10 method could work for some people. However, if you work better in longer sprints, then the marathon method might be a better fit for you. It all depends on what works best for you and your work style. Experiment with it and see what gets you the best results.

Kimberly Huang
Social Lead

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