Challenge: The Pomodoro

About the Author
Profile photo of Grant

Grant Pettegrew


Millennial Entrepreneur and creator of He is passionate about helping other Gen Y entrepreneurs.

This week we have a brand new challenge, having you test out a very specific productivity technique that has been around for the last 30 years or so… If you want to get more out of your day in less time, allowing you to do the things you love, then this is for you.

If this is the first time you have seen this, GenY Alive will be creating simple challenges that create positive results in your daily life. This is the nudge you need to take the small steps towards living a more positive life. I recommend that you try the challenge for at least 7 days, but it is up to you how long you want to continue.

Listen to yourself and be aware of how these challenges affect other aspects of your life. If you see value in continuing, great! If not, then you will have stepped outside your comfort zone and learned something new. Either way, you win.

If you haven’t signed up for challenges yet, go here. Otherwise good luck, keep your mind open, and enjoy!

So let’s get to the challenge…


Problem: TOO MUCH to do. TOO MANY distractions.

A simple to-do list doesn’t cut it anymore. In fact, the list usually grows as opposed to shrinking and getting checked off. This creates more frustration and in-action because of the general feeling of overwhelm.

We need a system to get us focused and moving forward.


Simple solution: Block out your time in a specific time interval designed to improve “mental agility.”


The Challenge: The Pomodoro!


What is a “Pomodoro?”

It is a technique in which you work for 25 minutes straight on a predetermined task, then take a 5 minutes break before completing another interval. You may change tasks during any break.

After completing 4 intervals, you then take a longer 15 minute break. Set a goal of total pomodori to complete in a day. 10-12 is a good start.

For your break intervals, you can do whatever you want, but I recommend standing up and walking around briefly. It gets the blood flowing while resting your mind.

Your challenge is to set a specific amount of pomodori to complete each day for the next 5-10 work days (10-12 is a good start). Try to get into a rhythm with the intervals and make sure to notice how it changes your focus, efficiency, and overall productivity. Be honest if this approach helps or hurts, compared to your current system.

My perspective:

I am super excited for this because I LOVE this interval approach being applied to work. If you don’t know my story, I have a background in exercise science. Intervals are a great way to get fit fast, because it trains the body to recover quickly during the rest periods and teaches the body to better utilize energy. I assume this will apply to my brain and my daily work.

In fact, I have already started the challenge and I am using the pomodoro method to write this challenge. I can already tell that, as a side benefit, I am motivated to finish this article in the 25 minute interval. I have a firm deadline that wasn’t there before. Cool…

Side note/resource:

There are plenty of pomodoro apps that will time you, alert you when to take a break, track your tasks/projects, etc.

This method was developed by Francesco Cirillo. Pomodoro is Italian for tomato. Hence the tomato imagery.

Potential side benefits:

As mentioned earlier, the interval method can create artificial deadlines throughout your day, helping you not only work, but finish your work in a timely manner.

Also this may create more energy from taking 5 minute walking breaks. No more sitting down for 2, 3, 4 hours in a row. Good for you health and good for your mind.


Enjoy your challenge. Let’s get to work!

– Grant Pettegrew


P.s. Let me know how the challenge is going.  I like to hear feedback.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *