Eat that Frog
By Brian Tracy
Change the way you think and do things
Apply things until they become a habit
Why do some people get more done than others? They do things right, use time differently – and what they do, I can do too, just ask them and do same thing.
Key to success is action
Always much to do and more ideas, but key is to focus on most impor things
Do hardest thing first and then the easiest
If have to eat a live frog, it’s not going to help sitting there and looking at it – just do it
Activity and accomplishment are often confused, but not the same
Learn to start and finish a job
Practice is key to master something
To become a successful person – Decision, Discipline and Determination
- Decide what you want or are expected
- Write it down – goals not in writing lead to not getting things done
- Set deadline on goal
- Make a list of steps to complete job
- Organize the list into a plan – what to do now and what to do later
- Take action on the plan – execution
- Do something every day towards the goal – discipline of reading or doing things give you fuel to continue
Long term thinking improves short term decision making. Making decisions of the present is easier when you know what your long term goal is. What are the future consecuences or benefits of what I am going to do in the present.
First law of success is concentration – bend all strenghts to one point and focus on that point.
There is never enough time to do everything, but always time to do important things.
We may never be able to catch up, so get that out of your mind – better to just do what is most important and forget the rest.
3 questions on getting things done:
- What are my highest value activities
- What can I and only I do that is done well and that can make a difference
- What is the most valuable use of my time right now – this is the core question of time management. Every hour of every day I need to ask this question. Do first things first and second things… not at all.
When fully prepared, you can get much more done. Most creative people make the place they work at a nice, comfortable and clean place where they are going to work – this will help you work well. The cleaner and neater, the more effective and efficient you feel to work.
Learn what you need to learn so you can do what you are supposed to do. Much of procrastination is because we don’t know exactly how to do what we are going to do. Continuous learning is a key to success. What others know, I can learn as well.
There are certain things you can do or learn to do that can make you valuable to others.
You can not do everything, but you can do those things that make you accel
How do you eat an elephant? – one bite at a time – and the same method is used to finish a big job.
Only about 2% of people can do work entirely without supervision – they are called leaders. Learn to put the pressure on yourself. The world is full of people waiting for someone to come and motivate them to be the type of people they should be – but no one is coming to help them.
Keep yourself motivated and be your own cheerleader.
Don’t share your problems with others because 80% don’t care anyway and the other 20% are glad you have those problems.
Don’t blame others, accept responsibility, don’t dwell on the negative.
Go the extra mile, do more than you are paid for. Wake up earlier, stay up later, work a little harder.
Successful people put the pressure on themselves. Work as though you have 1 day left to get all the things done – become a high performanced person.
Write out the steps to do projects and then work exclusively on these task.
If you do things when you are energized, you will get more done as oppossed to being tired. Turn off the TV and go to sleep. Take off one day a week and relax, do things that will not tax your brain and allow your brain to recharge yourself – a change is as good as a rest. A vacation, a weekend off, etc will rejuvenate you. Be careful of what you eat – feed yourself as you would feed a world-class athlete before a competition because that is what you are before you are before beginning that task. And finishing the task gives you more energy and helps you feel like you have accomplished much.
One of most powerful words in time management is “NO” – say it often and say it quickly. Do not accept things that you can not do.
Always do the most difficult job first
Many have become best sellers because they have written 1 page a day until finishing the job – working in time segments will help you tremendously (read so much of a book, exercise for 30 minutes, call during this part of the day, etc). Someone who creates blocks of time completes more than the normal person. Remember that the pryamides were built one stone at a time. Make every minute count by planning and preparing your work in advance.
The key to happiness and effectiveness is to eat the frog, the difficult task, every day before starting other things.
21 ideas for getting things done
- Set the Table – decide what you want, write out goals before begin, clarity is essential.
Ability to concentrate on most important things = happiness and getting more done
10/90 rule – first 10% of time you plan will save you 90% of time when you begin to work
We always have enough time if we manage it right
- Plan day in advance – think on paper. Every day you spend time planning will save you time in execution.
Write out what you want will help you
Planning is bringing future in present so I can do something about it right now.
Every minute in planning saves you at least 2 hours in wasted time
Proper prior planning permits proper performance
Think on paper, you will be able to do more
Make list at end of day or night before and be ready for next day – you will be more effective the next day.
A. Have a master list
B. Have a monthly list
C. Have a weekly list – to plan out week in advance
D. Transfer from monthly/weekly list to daily list
- Apply the 80/20 rule – 20% of what you do will amount to the 80% of importance. Concentrate on most important
There is always 20 percent (2 out of the 10 to-do things on my list) that are more important and will be more profitable if I do it.
Resist the temptation to clear up the small things first – if you choose to do the small things at the first of the day, you will make a habbit of doing small things, so start with the big things first. Most people do the small things and procrastinate on the big things.
Time management is life management – control over what you do next.
Your ability to choose between the important and most important is important and will allow you to accomplish more than the average person.
- Concentrate on the consecuences – what are the good or bad consecuences of doing what I am going to do.
- Practice the ABCDE method continually – organize by value and priority
ABCDE rule: put an “A, B, C, D, E” beside every task to see what is the importance.
- Something very important – the frogs of your life
- Should do – not as important as the “A” task. Never be distracted by a tadpole when you have a frog in front of you.
- Nice to do but no consecuences at all if do – call a friend, etc
- Something you can delegate to someone else – you should delegate things that can be done by others.
- Something you can eleminate all together because not important to do. Maybe was important at one time, but not important now.
- Focus on key result areas – what are the things I have to do well at and focus on those things.
- Obey the law of forced efficiency – there is never enough time to do everything, but always enough time to do the most important things.
- Prepare thoroughly before you begin – proper prior preparation prevents poor performance.
- Do your homework – more knowledge you have about the task you are going to do, the better and more quickly you can get it done.
- Leverage your special talents – determine what you are good at or what could be good at and do those things very well.
- Identify your key restraints – focus on alleviating the constraints to be more affective.
- Take it one step at a time – you can accomplish if you just take it one step at a time.
- Put pressure on yourself – imagine you have to leave town and you have to complete things before you leave – that will help you accomplish it.
- Maximize your personal powers – identify your best times of day mentally and phisically and focus on working during those times. Get lots of rest so you can perform at your best.
- Motivate yourself into action – be your own cheerleader. Look for the good in everything, focus on the solution rather than the problem. Always be optomistic and constructive.
- Practice creative procrastination – since you can’t do everything, pick the most important things and do the other things later.
- Do the most difficult task first – the one task that can make the greatest contribution to your job.
- Slice and dice the task – break large task into small task and do them parts at a time.
- Create large chunks of time – organize your days into sections of time so that you can do what you need to do.
- Develop a sense of urgency – become known as a person who does things quiclky and well.
Highly effective people plan and set priorities
Stopping and picking back up task can take up to 500% more time than just doing it. You get more done when continuing something, but when stop a task, you break the flow of doing it.
Self discipline, self mastery and self control are the base of character and high performance.
- Single handle every task – set priorities and work until the job is 100% complete, this is the real key to high performance and maximum productivity.
Persistence is self discipline in action