Have you ever eaten a frog? I haven’t…well at least in actuality but in terms of productivity, I’ve eaten several and they still don’t taste good but I feel so much better after I’ve done it.
Let me explain for those of you still reading! “Eat the Frog” is a metaphor used in the business world for tackling a tough task and getting it out of the way. It’s been used many times, most recently by popular productivity guru Brian Tracy but the term has been around for a long time. I think it’s a fitting description too because I doubt many of us like tackling those tough tasks we would rather put off to another day.
There have been times I’ve put off eating the frog. I’ve placed it in a drawer, tucked it away in my computer, or just put it out of sight so I wouldn’t have to see it. The problem is, the frog remains. The task doesn’t go away. It just stays around waiting for you to complete it. As a minister, it might be a tough meeting with a family, dealing with a staff person that needs to be talked to, or perhaps you have some paperwork piling up that HAS to be done. Whatever it is, it’s best tackle it and to do it soon.
So how do you “eat the frog”? For me, I have to plan for it. I plan each of my days the night before and I know what frogs are coming up. I usually plan to tackle these as early as possible. If it’s a meeting, I try to get it done early in the week since I like to have my mind cleared by Sunday so I can preach effectively. If it’s paperwork, I try to make it the first thing I do when I start my day. As I plan my “results” list, I place it at the top with high priority so I can tackle it first and get it out of the way. Combined with the “power of 48” principle I’ve written about earlier, I try to nail the task early and refresh my mind for the rest of the day.
This requires planning. I will tell you from experience if you don’t plan your day and put the frogs front and center, they will stay out of reach and undone causing you more stress and less productive time in your day. From a spiritual standpoint, this can be devestating to your walk with the Lord when you have “frogs” weighing on your mind while trying to grow in your relationship with Christ.
Tackle your frogs. Plan to eliminate one today, either do it or schedule it for tomorrow in your day planner. You’ll be surprised at how much more enjoyable your day will be when you follow this little principle. I know it’s not pleasant but get the salt, the steak sauce, and whatever you need to make a bit more palatable and then, take a bite of frog. It will be the best thing you can do for your day.