How to Eat an Elephant

An elephant is a big thing.  At 9 – 11 feet and 12,000 to 13,000 pounds the animal is massive.  You got a big trunk, two 10 foot long tusks, two ears, a tail, four legs the size of trees and a tail to boot.  How do you eat an elephant?  One bite at a time.

If you haven’t thought about it recently, it’s worth taking the time to ask yourself a few questions about what you want your life to be like in five years.  A lot of things can happen in five years.  Think about each of the areas of your life and what’s important to you.  Think about relationships with family.  Think about career or business.  Think about hobbies that you would like to do.  Would you like to go on an adventure?  Would you like to travel to some place?  What would you improve in your life you could get what you want?  The fact of the matter is you are the one driving the ship of your life.  If you want something, only you will be able to get what you want.

I had a conversation with someone recently and the person said I’d like to start a business.  My reply was, you know what’s the best way to start a business?  Start a business.

When I look at what I want my life to be five years from now, I call this my five year vision.  Once, I’ve determined my five year vision, it’s time to identify what it will take for me to achieve my five year vision.  Here is the process I go through:

  1. Break your five year vision down into five phases – one phase for each year.
  2. List five things that need to be done during the next five years to arrive at your five year vision.
  3. Once you’ve identified the five things you have way points to guide your path to your five year vision.
  4. Now it’s time to look at phase one of your five year vision.  List four objectives that need to be done during the next year to arrive at your Phase 1 way point.
  5. Once you’ve identified the four objectives for the next year, you have identified what needs to be done each quarter of the next year.
  6. Now that you know what your objective is for the next quarter, it is time to identify the three actions that will need to be accomplished in order to achieve your quarter objective.
  7. The three actions are you monthly projects that need to be done in order to accomplish your quarter objective.  Assign one project to each month during the next quarter.
  8. Think about your project for this month and write down all the actions that you need to perform in order to complete that project.
  9. One you’ve listed the actions for this month’s project, it’s time to schedule time for you to work on the actions.
  10. Every week review your project list and keep track of your progress on the project.

This is the way to create a to do list that actually is meaningful.  This enables me to work on items this week that move me forward towards my five year vision.


Share this post:


  • We started our residential real estate business and brought Damon on as our principal adviser for all matters relating to taxes & accounting. We have doubled our business each year and Damon is a critical partner that has allowed us to successfully focus on our business.

    – Dan and Rachel Kendall
    Owners, The Rachel Kendall Team, LLC - Raleigh, NC
  • Damon Yudichak is a diligent and consistent professional. I’ve worked with Damon since 2009 and I’ve felt like a valued customer since the beginning of our relationship. His firm is consistent, courteous, and knowledgeable. He and his firm are a vital link to my business.

    – Al Sullivan, President
    Inspirus Consulting, Inc. – Cary, NC
  • Owning a small business… to me, it’s worth millions! Bringing Damon on for accounting and tax purposes… just a reasonable monthly fee! Keeping our business legal and my business partner sane… PRICELESS!

    – Tonya Baskerville, Owner
    Art on the Fridge, LLC – Raleigh, NC