Taking Goals To Task

The most granular element of the life management process is called a task. A task is something that can be done by applying effort to a single undertaking at a defined point in time. Tasks are critical factors of personal and organizational development, and they’re sometimes very difficult.

Building a house is a huge goal. It will no doubt require many sub goals, such as: laying the foundation; erecting exterior walls; adding a roof; framing the inside; installing plumbing, electrical, and fixtures; putting up drywall and trim; and painting. Some of these sub goals may themselves have further sub goals. Eventually, however, the project will consist of a series of tasks.

The worker responsible for the foundation, for example, may decide to dig a footer on a certain day. That becomes a task. Likewise for adding steel reinforcements, pouring the concrete, and whatever else is involved in building the groundwork of a residence.

On a smaller scale, tasks may include activities such as looking up a telephone number, making a call, having lunch with someone to solicit advice, writing a memo, etc. The examples for both personal life and business are endless.

Indeed, tasks themselves are nearly unlimited, or so they seem. The truth is that by scheduling and completing tasks one at a time, layers of sub goals, then large goals themselves, are eventually accomplished.


Even the woodpecker owes his success to the fact that he uses his head and keeps pecking away until he finishes the job he starts.

– Coleman Cox

The ability to persevere is a very important factor in creating success and happiness. Everyone has opportunity. We all have areas of expertise. Each of us has been given talents. But observation reveals that those who simply stick to the task, making steady progress, emerge victorious in the long run.

Small steps toward our goals may not seem exciting when viewed individually. But the accumulation of those contributions can add up to amazing results. We look back and realize that tremendous progress was made.

Don’t lose heart. Persevere to the completion of your goal. The greatest symphonies were written one note at a time.


The above is used by permission from the book Three Years Of Tuesday Mornings: 156 e-mails about business and life by Steve Fales.

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