21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time
The premise is at first startling, but Eat That Frog!, by Brian Tracy is another way of saying, “get the worst over first.” The book is a list of 21 different exercises to help you decipher, zone in on, and tackle the most important tasks in your life (the ones procrastinators tend to avoid until last), and make and keep up with your goals. It goes on, at length, as to how this will help you manage your time, your life, and your business, better.
I do not especially care for self-help books. I try them, but get bored with them quickly. Eat That Frog especially so. Since a child, I learned that making a ‘to do’ list is a great way of keeping track of what I had to accomplish. I remember going to Girl Scout camp for the first time. My mother said, “Make a list of everything you need to pack.” I had fun making the list, even more fun checking it off, and I was the most prepared girl at camp. There. Lesson learned. And the same can be said about setting goals. Make a plan. Write it down. Adjust it as life demands.
It is true. Making lists keeps life in order. The more hectic your life, the more you should make lists. How else could one survive? My point is that I think Brian Tracy agonizes this issue. For over two hours, the book gives this basic advice—said every which way possible.
Yes, do the most shunned task first and get it out of the way. (Eat the horrible frog first.) Then, the rest of your tasks will seem like a piece of cake. (Nothing else will seem so distasteful.) Yes, make a list of your goals. Stick by it. If you can do this steadily, you will steadily achieve your goals. This is elementary time / life management advice.
I kept having another gnawing thought while waiting to hear some new, remarkable advice that would make my organized life even easier. That is that I often feel that the opposite of Mr. Tracy’s advice works better for me. If I have a long list of projects to tend to, I find that getting five or six little things out of my hair frees me up to then concentrate fully on the bigger, harder, task I must also complete.
This may not go along with the 20 / 80 (20% of your time should equal 80% of your accomplishment) premise, but I have a hard time delving into one big project knowing that lots of little things are waiting. I prefer to get the trivial things done, and then I can put my nose to the grindstone with a clear head…and schedule!
Granted, for those who have somehow made it to adulthood without jotting down lists, for those who continuously put-off their most important tasks, or who can never settle on a goal, this book should help bring you up to speed with how other people get things done.
Brian Tracy is a renowned speaker and prolific author of “time management” and “how to succeed in business” books. Perhaps he is better to listen to in person; here, his voice is soon lifeless and monotone. He seems to pause in off places and makes the recording sound ‘tripped up’. I would not call him a ‘high-energy’ narrator.