– Written by Suresh Mahawar Preparation for an examination can be stressful when you have a lot to cover in very little time. While some of us have a proper study plan, most students study less and stress more about the exam outcome. With JEE Main around the corner, it is imperative to maintain a schedule while studying or covering a particular syllabus. So, avoid stressing and use the formula of Pomodoro to plan your JEE Main study hours. The Italian word for tomato, Pomodoro, is one technique that will help you plan your strenuous study schedules not only effectively but also efficiently. This technique was invented by Francesco Cirillo three decades ago when he was a university student in Italy. He used a tomato-shaped timer to measure his 25-minute sessions on any task. He took a break for five minutes after each session — which he believed is the perfect length of time to help you not procrastinate, be productive, create urgency and help stay focused on any task. This technique is widely used by various people all over the world. Francesco worked at the forefront of software firms and guided umpteen developers and engineers. His core focus was to improve efficiency and produce better outcomes in lesser time. This technique can be useful in studying for long hours without creating mental fatigue. Follow the four-step process to manage your study hours better and learn faster: 1. Choose ‘that’ chapter: Yes, choose that long-pending chapter and then divide it into smaller topics. So, now your goal to complete a 52-page lesson has shifted to a 5-page section. Make small goals and focus on achieving them. Also, make sure to get all the necessary things like a notepad, pen, water-bottle, and anything else you need before you start studying. Read | Preparing for JEE Main 2021? Try these sample papers 2. Set the timer: The human mind wanders off easily. With social media, phones, and so many other distractions, staying focused has become difficult. All you must do is set a timer for 25 minutes and study only for that time. However, you can decide between 20 to 40 minutes, depending on what suits you. Just do not over-exert yourself. 3. Break time: Time for some fresh air. You have accomplished one of your goals, and now it is sometime for relaxation. Treat yourself to a small break of 5 to 10 minutes for all that dedication and focus. This break will help your mind relax for a while and refocus on the subject better. Snack on your favourite food, stretch a little, or go for a short walk but stick to the time interval. Read | JEE toppers opt for Computer Science over Artificial Intelligence, here’s why 4. Study-Snack-Start: That is the simple mantra to productivity. After the short break, start your schedule again, and once you have completed four sessions of about 25 minutes each, then take a more extended break of about 15 minutes. Refresh and kickstart another Pomodoro session. Studying for long hours can make you feel exhausted and lead to procrastination. This is a simple process where you break-down your schedule into small segments and plan your breaks. This will help you focus better, complete your studies faster, and further help you increase productivity. — The author is a master teacher at Vedantu.