Maximize Productivity With The “52/17” Rule Of Taking Regular Breaks

7 min readJun 21, 2022


Maximize Productivity With The “52/17” Rule Of Taking Regular Breaks

What’s the secret to maximizing productivity?

You’ll get hundreds of different answers if you ask Google, ranging from crazy diets to seven-minute workouts. But the answer might be simpler than you think. Rather than focusing on these tricks, ‌try the 52/17 rule instead.

The 52/17 rule, popularized by Cal Newport in his book Deep Work, states that if you want to be productive when you are most capable, ‌schedule no more than 52 minutes of deep work at a ‌time with 17-minute breaks in between each session.

By following the 52/17 rule of taking regular breaks, you can see if it works for you as it has for ample people worldwide in all different ‌jobs, from manual labor to software development and everything in between.

In this blog, we will discuss five tips on how to maximize & maintain productivity with the 52/17 rule of taking regular breaks that will help you accomplish your tasks quickly and efficiently.

So, with no delays, let’s get started with our first question.

What Is The 52/17 Rule?

The 52/17 rule is a time management technique that can increase productivity and focus. The basic premise is to work for 52 minutes straight, then take a 17-minute break. This can be repeated as needed throughout the day.

It has been noticed that those who followed the rules ‌have more productive days than their peers who stick to sedentary work environments.

There are many other benefits to using the 52/17 rule. It helps increase focus and concentration. Working for short bursts of time allows you to stay concentrated for long periods without getting distracted. It also prevents mental fatigue.

Constantly working without breaks can lead to burnout and mental fatigue. By applying the 52/17 rule, you can prevent this and lead to a better work-life balance.

How To Implement The 52/17 Rule?

The 52/17 rule is a productivity technique that can help you make the most of your time. The idea is to work for 52 minutes straight, then take a 17-minute break. This allows you to stay focused on your work while still getting some much-needed rest and relaxation.

To implement the 52/17 rule, start by setting a timer for 52 minutes. Work on your task or projects until the timer goes off, and then take a break. For example, work for 52 minutes and then take a 17-minute break. Or you could work for 30 minutes and then take a 3-minute break. The key is to find what operates best for you and your lifestyle.

Experiment with different intervals of work and break times to see what helps you focus the best. You can do anything you want during your break, get up and stretch, have a snack, check social media, or just relax. Once your break is over, it’s time for you to get back to your work.

And remember, there’s no rule that says you have to take a 17-minute break. If you need more or less time, go for it! The 52/17 rule is about finding what works best for you.

Now let’s discuss the five ways to improve productivity with the 52/17 rule.

1) Setting Priority is the Key

Maintaining productivity throughout your workday requires maximum utilization of the time you have. To do so, write ‌a list of your top priorities and set a timer for 53 minutes. When it goes off, take a quick break for 17 minutes, then repeat. This process is called sprint planning.

At first, you may not make it through everything on your list in just once, but after days or weeks of practicing sprint planning, you’ll find that everything gets crossed off before quitting time.

Besides maintaining productivity during work hours, sprint planning also helps increase efficiency by reducing stress and anxiety, which will help you stay productive for longer periods.

You can also use a productivity app like Workstatus to track how much time you spend on different tasks throughout your workday. This allows you to see where your biggest productivity drains are so that you can adjust accordingly.

2) Avoid Multitasking

Avoid Multitasking

According to Time Magazine, multitasking is a myth. Although we like to think we’re accomplishing more by doing two or three things simultaneously, researchers say that multitasking only decreases productivity and leads to switching costs.

It takes about 10 to 15 minutes for your brain to refocus after you switch tasks. Instead of multitasking, try limiting yourself to one task at a time. This will help you to get more done in less time and minimize stress on your brain.

You can try the 52/17 rule for a week to see if it works for you. The basic principle is to avoid multitasking and focus on one task at a time by working on a single task for 52 minutes and then taking a reasonable break.

The idea behind this rule is that when you divide your attention between multiple tasks, it takes more time to complete all of them and makes you less productive. By following the 52/17 rule, you will be more focused on your goals.

So, try focusing on a single task at a time and see how it goes. You may find that you’re able to accomplish more in less time.

3) Don’t Overwork Yourself

It’s tempting to pour yourself into your work and make a ton of progress in a short amount of time. However, overworking yourself isn’t sustainable. It can lead to fatigue, burnout, stress, and even injury, which can be very detrimental to productivity.

One solution is to eliminate this by applying the 52/17 rule, which will help you stay productive and happy‌. You can break your work into manageable chunks to have breaks throughout your day.

For example, if you’re working on a task for one hour, take a 17-minute break before moving on to another task. This way, you won’t burn out or feel overwhelmed. It also gives your brain some downtime to rest and recuperate so that it can be ready for more challenging tasks later in the day.

You can also go for a walk outside and enjoy some fresh air. Exercise is a great way to boost productivity and stay relaxed. Remember, your brain works best when it’s relaxed, so don’t let yourself indulge in overwork and let your mind stay productive at all times.

4) Take Breaks To Improve Focus And Concentration

Take Breaks To Improve Focus And Concentration


Taking regular breaks is an essential component of a healthy work-life balance, but it’s also integral to improve focus and concentration. It turns out that we all have a limited amount of mental energy available each day, so using up too much energy before our brains have had time to recharge can leave us feeling tired and unfocused later in the day.

So take regular breaks throughout your day and try to schedule them when you’re most likely to be at a natural stopping point. For example, if you tend to get lost in your work during morning hours but find it hard to focus after lunch, plan on taking a break ‌after lunch.

This will also give your brain a chance to recharge and prepare for whatever is next on your agenda.

5) Stick To Your Schedule

If you’re self-employed or working from home, it’s tough to get into a routine. Stick to your schedule by creating a well-defined routine for yourself, even on weekends. Choose what time slot you want to work each day, and don’t deviate from that until it’s over.

Afterward, reset your clock back at zero hours before starting again. Besides sticking to your scheduled blocks of work time, make sure you take regular breaks during those times as well.

For example, if you schedule one hour for working on a task and 20 minutes for a break, stick to that schedule. Don’t be tempted to check social media accounts when it’s not yet time for a break. This will help you stay focused and also prevent burnout from working too long.

Use tools to keep yourself on track. There are several productivity tracking software and apps out there that can help you maximise your efficiency. These tools can provide reminders about upcoming tasks, help you ‌ maintain your work plan, and even provide informative insights throughout the day, which will help you ‌ become more productive and efficient.

The “52/17” rule is a must guideline to follow. For every 52 minutes of work, take a 17-minute break. This gives your mind a chance to rest and rejuvenate, so you can return to your work refreshed and ready to focus.

Of course, not everyone works at the same pace, so listening to your body and taking breaks when you feel yourself flagging is essential to get the most out of your work time.


Although it may seem counterproductive, taking regular breaks can help you maximize your productivity. The “52/17” rule is an excellent way to incorporate more breaks into your day. By spacing out your work time with short, five-minute breaks every 17 minutes, you can keep your energy up and your mind fresh.

We hope this post has given you some ideas on being more productive in the long run. By following these simple steps and tips, you can ensure that you get the most out of your time spent working.

What tips do you have for enhancing productivity?

We would love to hear from you. Please leave your comments below!

Also, don’t forget to share our post with your friends.

We will catch you next time with another interesting topic.

Till then, keep reading and learning.





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