Eat That Frog!
The top reason business owners fail and underachieve in life and business is… procrastination.
It’s Not That We Don’t Know What To Do…
It’s not that we don’t know what to do, but rather that we don’t do it. Today you will discover a method you can use immediately to increase your results and get the right things done every day.
You Don’t Need More Time…
You don’t need more time, you just need the tools to use the time you have more effectively.
There’s a quote often attributed to Mark Twain, “Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.” I don’t believe he ever said it, but the concept is something you can use to get better results. It’s the concept of doing your hardest, and hopefully of the highest value, task each morning first thing. It’s developing the skillset of getting the most important thing done every day.
I did the research for you on the quote and the actual quote comes from 18th-century French writer Nicolas Chamfort who said: “Swallow a toad in the morning if you want to encounter nothing more disgusting the rest of the day.” Famous trainer and salesperson Brian Tracy wrote a whole book about it called “Eat That Frog”. The key to success is action – and your choice of which action to take determines how fast you achieve that success.
Every Morning – Eat the Frog
The principle is simple – first thing every morning you eat the frog. You do the high-value task or the thing that you have been putting off. These tend to be big, hairy, ugly, tough tasks that you find yourself afraid to get started on – you don’t want to face them. We know, from the 80/20 rule, also known as the Pareto Principle, that 20% of the things on your to-do list produce 80% of your results. The key is to identify them as high-value frogs and complete them first – before any of the other tasks.
When you do this, you will find that value of your time skyrockets, because you are doing the most important task first every day. You will find that by doing it first thing each day you will gain energy, motivation, and momentum for the rest of the day. The energy will be both physical and mental. When you finish the task, eat the frog, your brain will release a chemical called dopamine into your brain that provides you with good feelings and more energy. In this case, done is the engine of more. You will become known for your “get it done-ness” and control over your business and life will increase.
Best Practices for Eating Frogs – Do It First Thing
Do it first thing, before anything else. If you start something else you will be distracted. You will allow yourself to get busy with other things. Do it first thing. I like to habit link the frog-eating to something that happens every morning. For me, it’s turning on my desktop computer in the office. When I turn that on, the first thing I must do is 30 minutes of frog-eating. I’m not allowed to check email, social media, news media, bank accounts, sales reports, or anything. I surf my urge to want to do all those things and transmute that energy into the frog-eating. For some people that could be that first cup of coffee, which you can’t have until you start on the frog, or maybe every day the first cup of coffee is frog-eating time.
First Task = Worst Task
Make the first task the worst task. Back to the quote, if the worst part of your day is over then it’s all downhill. You won’t have that hanging over you anymore. The sense of accomplishment will energize the rest of the day. So eat the ugliest frog first.
Select your frog carefully. Make sure your frog is something of high value. That could be its value to the business or it could be its value to you or it could be the value of just finally getting that darn thing you have carried over on your to-do list 10 days in a row done!
Don’t Look At It
Don’t look at the frog very long. A key to eating the frog is to not stare at it long, just jump in and eat it. The way you do that is to prepare for the meal, as Brian Tracy says you need to “set the table”. Do everything you can the day before to prepare to eat the frog. For example, if you need to call a client that you have been putting off, get all set up to do that. The day before clear off your desk, get out the client’s paperwork, get the phone number out, put a post-it note up on your computer, and do anything you can to prepare. So when you get into the office, it’s all ready to go and you don’t have to think about it, you just need to do it and you have everything you need to jump right in and do it. If you want to lock it in you can email or text the client and say I’ll be calling you tomorrow at 8 am.
Focus & Eat Fast
Stay focused and eat fast. You need to cut out all distractions for frog-eating time. You need to have a sense of urgency to get this task done as fast as possible. Make sure your frog-eating environment is distraction-free. Turn off all the rings, dings, and bings from your phone or computer. Be in the zone and get it done.
Chunk in down to the doable. If the frog is a large one then you need to chunk it down into more doable parts. Figure out what’s the next step you can do right now to move it along. If you feel like you don’t have enough time to finish it then move it along the best and most focused that you can in the time you have. Sometimes I eat my frogs in 30 or 55-minute time blocks. For bigger frogs, I will block out 3-4 hours if needed. Your future and the speed at which you move towards your future depends on your ability to consistently eat the frogs.
Know So You Can No.
The last thing is know so you can no. What I mean by that is that you must know why you are doing all this so you can say no to all the distractions. Once I realized that the word KNOW had the word NO inside of it (K-NO-W), I realized part of my results was coming from my ability to say no to things that were not moving me towards my goal. Things like distractions, other people’s agenda, my ego, shiny objects, negative thoughts, outside circumstances I could not change, and things that caused me to worry and get off track.
To achieve what you want from life and your business you need to develop the habit of eating the frog each day. If you do nothing else but get that biggest, high-value, ugly task done each day, you find yourself winning.
The bad news is time flies, the good news is you’re the pilot, now pilot some good daily frog-eating!… Blaine
Blaine Oelkers is a lifetime entrepreneur, graduate of Purdue University and Stanford University’s Entrepreneurship program. He’s achieved over 100 Million dollars in sales and coached thousands of people.
He’s a leading authority on Personal Implementation and America’s only Chief Results Officerâ and Day Ahead™ Specialist. He helps business owners go from being a day behind to being a day ahead in business and in life. He’s one of the world’s greatest creators of valuable doneness. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more visit www.BeingADayAhead.com