Eat that Frog – Book Review

Today’s post is a list of my take-aways from the book ‘Eat that Frog- 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time‘ by Brian Tracy.

A wonderful and easy read, this book had a great bunch of tips to accomplish more tasks and combat procrastination and many more distractions as follows:

  • Salami and swiss cheese techniques– amazing strategies to take back control of time and to-do lists
  • Attraction to Distraction – aptly explains the circle of how technology and social media lull us into a circle of interruptions, false sense of urgency and accomplishment and eventually into ‘busyness’ that is unproductive.
  • Rule: Long term thinking improves short term decision making
  • Future Orientation: resetting our attitude towards our “Time Horizon
  • ABCDE method of prioritizing
  • Law of Three: a novel and practical approach to quickly discern between progressive tasks and inconsequential [or nearly so] chores
  • Book titled Learned Optimism about the benefits of optimism and how we can form this outlook.

Listed below are also the 21 steps as outlined by the author and some of the opinions and steps I intend to adopt for in my own life:

  • Set the Table

We bought a simple Whiteboard and markers. This works to keep our main goals [short term and long term] in plain sight and acts as a powerful reminder.

  • Plan every day in Advance

Especially as a Mom, I can vouch for this fact!

  • Apply the 80/20 rule to everything

Also known as Pareto rule, this applies to everything from blogging to life’s fun. 20% activities give 80% results. So, focus on the top 20%.

  • Consider the Consequences

Whether good or bad, effects and repercussions act as powerful motivators.

  • Practice creative procrastination

Saying Yes to inconsequential tasks means having to say NO to important, career opportunities or life boosting experiences. Hence, choose the few that count.

  • Use ABCDE method continually

As mentioned earlier, this method of taking stock of tasks and their importance is wonderful.

  • Focus on Key Result Areas

  • Apply Law of Three

One of my favorite tips in this book, three is also perfect for our short term memory. Power of three!

  • Prepare thoroughly before you Begin

As chef’s state: mise en place. Whether cooking a great holiday spread, working on this post, or any of life’s chores, having all the ingredients and tools is necessary to focus on the task.

  • Take it one oil barrel at a time

  • Upgrade key skills

In today’s rapidly shifting work atmosphere and technological landscape, it is more important than ever to keep ourselves abreast of all the latest developments. As one article on resumes and career development stated, make sure you add one new item to your resume every three months. Sounds easy, but is hard to lose sight of in the nitty gritty of our daily jobs and responsibilities.

  • Identify Key Constraints

  • Put pressure on Yourself

  • Motivate yourself into Action

Incentives or bribes, use what works.

  • Technology is a terrible Master

Allied with the Attention to Distraction concept, being embroiled in the circle of technological tools and social media can cause us to lose focus of goals and chase after easy finishes.

  • Technology is a Wonderful Servant

Whether helping non-profits, tapping into learning resources, using as a free and useful assistant [reminders, etc.], collaborating without geographical constraints, technology can be used for a lot of great work and improve efficiency.

  • Focus your Attention

  • Slice and Dice the task

SMART goals work fabulously and small wins help spur greater commitment and productivity.

  • Create large chunks of Time

This is one point that I really cannot adopt because as a SAHM, my schedule revolves around that of others. For most corporate employees and entrepreneurs too, this is the case. But techniques like Pomodoro can help with creating solid if not massive chunks of time.

  • Develop a sense of urgency

  • Single handle every task

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