Review: Last Week’s Objectives

Pictured: the still-unfulfilled 'design a wheeled barrow-chair' aim, penned by a distant relative, returns to blight a new generation

What’s being tested?

The recognition of (notably unfulfilled) self-imposed objectives from previously self-imposed timescales, and the impact of those unachieved goals on the individual’s ability to impose new goals on him or herself. Also on test, the response of individuals directly affected by the objective-forming individual’s inability to consolidate on previously formed objectives.

What we found

Pros: Unfulfilled objectives often serve as effective reminders to the architect of those aims of his or her own fallibility, especially if said objectives appear in an unexpected or meaningful context (under a favourite child’s face on a family photo, or on a gravestone, for example). Effectively forming small, palatable defeats, our testers found that unaccomplished weekly aims could serve to galvanise the goal-author against larger, more significant disappointments (unexplained twitching, the closure of certain high street outlets, ‘the way things are these days’, etc.) via a series of smaller blows.

Also, we found that the tendency for certain objectives to constantly reappear on subsequent weekly lists imbued them with a kind of personality, akin to that of a travelling companion or treasured friend. Indeed, these objectives were often found to be more idealistic in nature (the most common being ‘get happy’ and ‘find happiness even if it KILLS YOU IN THE PROCESS’), and could be taken as evidence of the individual being in possession of bigger plans, albeit poorly formed and potentially fatal ones.  In this vein, we also felt that the individual’s lack of success in making good on seemingly easily accomplished aims could be implicit of said individual’s mind being on ‘higher things’, and not being calibrated to deal with menial, day to day responsibilities, though many of our testers also noted that individuals who WERE able to cope with real life were very often also able to think and do clever things, and should not be unduly insulted.

Cons: Often, unfulfilled objectives will be meaningfully romanticised as an indicator of man’s fallibility as a species, as opposed to just being indicative of one man/woman’s inability to do things/get things done. We found that an individual prone to this kind of deference of personal responsibility often applied the technique to other areas of his or her life, most notably in where their money disappears to, and why it isn’t their fault that it does. Our testers found that, if the stale objectives were easily visible (in an open organiser or on the fridge, for example) they could often serve as an effective deterrent to potential mates, or even well-wishers, as they were visible proof that the once well-thought-of love-target simply could not get things done/could not score off simply accomplished targets on a list/ could not lie about having accomplished simply accomplished targets by scoring them off a list despite not having accomplished them. We felt it worth pointing out that this deterrent could also be viewed as a positive, from a variety of angles.


We found that a visible record of unachieved goals is the surest way of not only destroying an individual’s warrior heart (through a powerful combination of irrefutable failure and self imposed bureaucracy), but also shaming future generations in a similar fashion. Many of our testers were visibly worried that the physical record of the individual’s collapse in objective fulfilment competence would somehow (inexplicably) make its way into the past, into the hands of the individual’s predecessors, forcing them to reconsider taking the steps that would ultimately bring the individual into existence.  While we would stress that this occurrence is not exactly in the realms of likelihood, we would still burn any evidence of previous objective based organisation, unless those objectives have been fulfilled, in which case good for you.


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