How do you eat an elephant?

There’s an old saying that says, “If the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning is eat a live frog, then nothing worse can happen for the rest of the day!” 

Brian Tracy, one of America’s leading authorities on the development of human potential, says that your “frog” should be the most difficult item on your things to do list, the one you’re most likely to procrastinate on. If you eat that first, it’ll give you energy and momentum for the rest of the day. But, if you don’t, if you let him sit there on the plate and stare at you while you do a hundred unimportant things, it can drain your energy and you won’t even know it.

In Eat That Frog!, Brian cuts to the core of what is vital to effective time management: decision, discipline and determination. In 21 practical steps, he will help you stop procrastinating and get more of the important tasks done.

Please enjoy today’s excerpt from Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time.

Live Inspired,

Michelle Sedas
Excerpted from Eat That Frog!
You have heard the old question, “How do you eat an elephant?” The answer is, “One bite at a time!”
How do you eat your biggest, ugliest frog? The same way; you break it down into specific step-by-step activities and then you start on the first one.
Your mind, your ability to think, plan and decide, is your most powerful tool for overcoming procrastination and increasing your productivity. Your ability to set goals, make plans, and take action on them determines the course of your life.
Conversely, as Alec Mackenzie wrote, “Taking action without thinking things through is a prime source of problems.”
Increase Your Return on Energy
One of your top goals at work should be for you to get the highest possible return on your investment of mental, emotional, and physical energy. The good news is that every minute spent in planning saves as many as ten minutes in execution. It takes only 10 to 12 minutes for you to plan out your day, but this small investment of time will save you up to two hours (100 to 120 minutes) in wasted time and diffused effort throughout the day.
You may have heard of the Six-P Formula. It says, “Proper Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance.”
When you consider how helpful planning can be in increasing your productivity and performance, it is amazing how few people practice it every single day. And planning is really quite simple to do. All you need is a piece of paper and a pen. The most sophisticated Palm Pilot, computer program, or time planner is based on the same principle. It is based on your sitting down and making a list of everything you have to do before you begin.
Two Extra Hours Per Day
Always work from a list. When something new comes up, add it to the list before you do it. You can increase your productivity and output by 25 percent or more – about two hours a day – from the first day that you begin working consistently from a list.
Make your list the night before for the workday ahead. Move everything that you have not yet accomplished onto your list for the coming day, and then add everything that you have to do the next day. When you make your list the night before, your subconscious mind will work on your list all night long while you sleep. Often you will wake up with great ideas and insights that you can use to get your job done faster and better than you had initially thought.
The more time you take to make written lists of everything you have to do, in advance, the more effective and efficient you will be.