Mark Twain said, “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.”
The most common ‘frogs’ for photographers? Almost always either:
1) Marketing-related – aka ‘putting yourself out there’ (due to it feeling outside your comfort zone and therefore intimidating and scary)
2) Finance-related (due to it feeling overwhelming or boring)
3) Writing-related – such as blog articles, website copy and mailing list emails (due to it feeling too difficult and/or needing a fair amount of brain power and concentration)
These examples above may or may not resonate with you, but whatever the version of this is for you personally, the “frog” is the dreaded task that has been lurking in your brain, that you know you should do, but that for some reason you just haven’t been able to actually do yet. It’s the task that is the biggest ball ache… It’s the task you’re inwardly groaning at the thought of… It’s the task you’ve been procrastinating doing and that keeps being carried over to the next day on your to-do list…
The biggest problem with the frog tasks? They’re almost always the things that will actually help your business the most. They’re the things that are in your ‘stretch’ zone rather than your comfort zone, and therefore the areas where growth and development happens. They’re almost always the things most worth doing.
WHY EAT THEM FIRST THING?
You need to make sure you do it first thing in the morning before you do anything else because there will never be a point in the day when you have more energy and motivation. First thing in the morning after a decent night’s sleep is when you will tackle it most competently and quickly. You won’t want to, but as the day goes on, your inclination to tackle it will dwindle and dwindle even further.
If you’re anything like me, you’ll kid yourself, “I’ll just do this other task first (i.e. something you quite fancy doing and that feels easy) then I’ll tackle that this afternoon.” But later in the day, you have even less energy and inclination to tackle it, so you procrastinate again, and just carry it over to the next day. Sometimes this can repeat itself for days / weeks / months on end.
Don’t underestimate how much these ‘frogs’ weigh you down – they’re always there, lurking in the back of your mind. You’re just delaying and prolonging the pain. Just eat the frog. Then everything else becomes easier.
DON’T FORGET THE FINAL, VERY IMPORTANT STAGE!
Make sure you have a treat planned for yourself after you’ve ‘eaten’ it. Frogs taste like crap and you deserve a reward for tackling it like a champ.
What ‘frog’ are you going to eat first thing tomorrow? And what reward will you give yourself when you’ve scoffed it?
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