What is a Task of the Month program?
Task of the Month, or ToM for short, takes a big, challenging job and breaks it down into 12 tasks. Giving yourself one month to do one task does a couple things: 1) It keeps it from being overwhelming. You have just one job. 2) It gives you a month to make it a habit, if you do it at the beginning of the month, or 3) It gives you a deadline for getting it done, if you’re a procrastinator. If you do the whole program, by the end of a year you should have made significant progress on the big, challenging job that you focused on, and hopefully you’ll have some pretty solid new habits by then too.
How does it work?
It’s easy. You sign up for the topic(s) that interest you most, then each month you get an email from us describing the task (as well as an alternate task or two in case you’ve already done the main one), info on how to do it and why it’s important, and links to more information. We’ll send a reminder mid-month in case you forgot.
Can I get a pdf of all the tasks at once, instead?
Yes. It defeats the purpose, in a way, but there are circumstances where that makes sense, so if you need them all at once just contact us and we’ll work it out.
What does the program cost?
For you, it’s free. And you’ll notice we don’t sell ads, either. And we definitely do NOT sell (or share in any way) your contact information. The only chance we have of recovering our expenses on this project is if you and others hit the donate button and voluntarily send something our way. Which we strongly encourage you to do, since that’s what enables us to take time away from paying jobs to write this stuff and maintain our website.
So, why do you do this?
Because we love our children, and yours, too. We’ll do anything we can to leave them a livable planet.
The original program, the Task of the Month Program for Reducing Household Energy Use, was first developed for Earth Care, an interfaith network of congregations addressing climate change in Bloomington, Indiana. In 2011 the newly launched organization Hoosier Interfaith Power & Light (H-IPL) took over the program, producing and distributing it to at least 200 congregations throughout Indiana. Eventually it was picked up by other organizations and adapted to their specific populations.
The original Task of the Month was delivered in a recycled pizza box (cleaned, and painted with paints found at our local re-use center). In the box was a (recycled) binder containing instructions, information sheets and posters for each month’s task, forms for recording accomplishments, and a CD containing all the files so that users could print high-quality copies for distribution to members of their organizations.
Over time, the expense of shipping pizza boxes around the state became burdensome, so the program was printed and spiral bound instead. Eventually, that format gave way as well, and the program today is mainly available electronically.