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I painted my frog orange

Photo “Where Troubles Melt Like Lemon Drops” by Thomas Hawk. CC license.

Brian Tracy’s Eat that Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time has been one of my Top Three “Desert Island” books for years. Brian Tracy is obviously a very prolific author, and I’ve read many of his works, but this slim tome seems to encapsulate everything that’s important, without any additives.

From the Introduction:

“The first rule of frog eating is this:
If you have to eat two frogs, eat the ugliest one first.”

See what I mean? Simple and to-the-point… and incredibly powerful when utilized on a daily basis. In fact, this single bit of wisdom has been one of the critical ingredients to whatever level of success and happiness I’ve attained so far.

But most theories have their exceptions, at least in practice.

If you look back at my blog posts, you’ll notice this month-long gap following a rather lame excuse about having to focus on the finishing touches on a new version of my online training and digital commerce platform.

Yeah, I’ve been busy eating frogs. The software has a lot of moving parts and development is taking longer than expected because I’m trying to hide all of the complexity from the end user (not unlike a good magic effect).

However, the software is just one piece of my newest venture. After 25 years of writing custom software for businesses, it’s time for me to give back. A big part of that process is me starting to share the wisdom I’ve gained from building automated systems for these companies over the past quarter-century. Writing English is now much more important to me than writing code.

The problem is that I love sharing ideas, both my own and those of the people I learn from!

Doesn’t sound like a very “ugly frog,” does it?

It’s not. But this work is more important, both to me and to the people I want to help.

Color psychology tells us that orange evokes excitement, adventure and social communication. That seems to be a perfect fit for how I feel about my current work, so I’ve painted my frog orange.

What are the frogs you need to be eating first-thing every day?

Once you’ve got your list, spend some time thinking about your current work habits and your ultimate goals. If you’re having a hard time just doing the hard stuff, pick up a copy of Eat That Frog! and put it on top of your “to do” pile so it’s the first thing you see every morning.

But if you’re making good progress on the hard stuff, but still not getting to the important work, consider painting your frogs a different color.

Bon Appétit!


Disclaimer: In case it’s not obvious, I did not actually paint any frogs orange. Frogs are cool and perfectly lovely in whatever shade they were born with.