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The key points of 'Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less' by Brian Tracy


Key Takeaways

  • Prioritize your tasks using the ABCDE Method to focus on what's most important.

  • Apply the 80/20 Rule to identify the most impactful tasks and prioritize them.

  • Create large chunks of time to work on important tasks without interruptions.

  • Develop a sense of urgency to motivate yourself into action and avoid procrastination.

  • Plan every day in advance to set clear goals and maximize productivity.

1. Set the Table

Before diving into the day's tasks, clearly define your goals. This step is about getting a clear vision of what you want to achieve and what success looks like for you. Start by writing down your objectives; this act alone can increase your productivity and give you a roadmap to follow.

  • Determine your true priorities.

  • Write down your goals.

  • Establish a timeline for achieving them.

2. Plan Every Day in Advance

Planning every day in advance is a cornerstone habit for peak productivity. Start your day with a clear direction by writing down your tasks and objectives. This simple act of planning can significantly increase your output and sense of control.

Prioritization is key when planning your day. Determine which tasks are most important and tackle those first. Here's a simple list to help you organize your day effectively:

  • Identify your top priorities

  • Allocate time slots for each task

  • Adjust your schedule for unexpected events

Remember, a well-planned day is a blueprint for a successful and productive day. Make planning a non-negotiable part of your daily routine.

3. Apply the 80/20 Rule to Everything

The 80/20 Rule, also known as the Pareto Principle, suggests that 80% of results come from 20% of efforts. Identify the tasks that yield the most significant outcomes and prioritize them. This approach can lead to more effective time management and increased productivity.

  • Determine which 20% of your work contributes to 80% of your results.

  • Focus on these high-impact activities.

  • Delegate or minimize time spent on less productive tasks.

Remember, not all tasks are created equal. Concentrate on the ones that have the greatest impact on your goals. The American Institute of Parliamentarians website features business books, author rankings, and book reviews. Subscribe to their newsletter for updates.

4. Consider the Consequences

Understanding the potential outcomes of your actions is a pivotal step in overcoming procrastination. Consider the consequences of doing, or not doing, a task. This foresight can be a powerful motivator, as it aligns your actions with your long-term goals and values.

Prioritization is key when you're faced with multiple tasks. Ask yourself which tasks will have the most significant impact on your life. For example, the rise and fall of Theranos can remind us that not weighing the consequences carefully can lead to dire outcomes. Reflect on how each task contributes to your objectives:

  • Will it bring you closer to your goals?

  • Does it align with your values?

  • What will be the impact of not completing it?

Remember, procrastination is often a result of being overwhelmed by the size or complexity of a task. Break down large tasks into smaller, more manageable pieces to make starting less daunting. This approach can help you maintain momentum and keep your focus on the end goal.

5. Practice Creative Procrastination

In 'Eat That Frog!', Brian Tracy emphasizes the importance of creative procrastination. This concept involves deliberately deciding to put off tasks that are of lower priority. Not all tasks are created equal, and some can be postponed or even eliminated to focus on those with higher impact.

  • Evaluate the importance of each task

  • Prioritize tasks that contribute the most to your goals

  • Defer or delegate less critical tasks

6. Use the ABCDE Method

The ABCDE method is a powerful priority setting technique that can help you take control of your tasks by categorizing them. Start by writing down all the tasks you have, and then assign them a letter from A to E, with A being the most important and E the least. This method encourages you to focus on your most valuable tasks, which can lead to more effective time management and productivity.

  • A: Tasks that are most important and must be done.

  • B: Tasks that should be done but are less critical.

  • C: Tasks that would be nice to do but aren't essential.

  • D: Tasks that can be delegated to someone else.

  • E: Tasks that can be eliminated altogether.

7. Focus on Key Result Areas

Identifying your Key Result Areas (KRAs) is crucial to enhancing productivity and ensuring that your efforts align with your most impactful goals. Prioritize tasks that contribute directly to your KRAs, as these are the activities that will truly move the needle in your work and personal life.

  • Determine your KRAs

  • Assess your current performance in each area

  • Set clear objectives to improve

Understanding and focusing on your KRAs is akin to a Beginner's Guide to the Stock Market; it lays the foundation for where to invest your time and energy for maximum return.

8. Apply the Law of Three

In 'Eat That Frog!', Brian Tracy emphasizes the Law of Three as a strategy for productivity. Identify the three most important tasks in your work and focus almost exclusively on these until they are complete. This principle is based on the idea that 90% of your productivity comes from these three tasks.

  • Determine your key goals

  • Identify the three tasks that contribute the most to your goals

  • Allocate your time and resources to these tasks

9. Prepare Thoroughly Before You Begin

Thorough preparation is a cornerstone of productivity. Before diving into a task, gather all necessary materials and information. This approach minimizes disruptions and maintains focus.

Preparation involves several key steps:

  • Define the task's objectives clearly.

  • Identify the resources and information required.

  • Organize your workspace to minimize distractions.

10. Take It One Oil Barrel at a Time

Tackling big projects can be daunting, but Brian Tracy advises to approach them one step at a time, akin to crossing a vast desert by aiming for one oil barrel at a time. This methodical approach breaks down overwhelming tasks into manageable segments.

Focus on completing each segment before moving on to the next, ensuring steady progress without becoming overwhelmed by the scale of the project. It's about maintaining momentum and using each small victory to propel you to the next 'oil barrel'.

Remember, the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Start with the first 'oil barrel' and before you know it, you'll have crossed your desert.

11. Upgrade Your Key Skills

In the journey of personal and professional development, upgrading your key skills is essential. Brian Tracy emphasizes the importance of continuous learning and skill enhancement to stay competitive and efficient. By dedicating time to improve your abilities, you not only become more proficient in your current role but also prepare yourself for future opportunities.

  • Identify the skills most relevant to your goals

  • Set aside regular time for learning and practice

  • Seek feedback and measure your progress

Remember, as Bren\u00e9 Brown's 'Dare to Lead' suggests, effective leadership and personal growth come from a willingness to learn and evolve. Embrace the process of skill development as a key part of your strategy to stop procrastinating and get more done.

12. Leverage Your Special Talents

Everyone has unique talents and strengths that can be harnessed to increase productivity and achieve success. Identifying and leveraging your special talents is crucial in making significant progress in your personal and professional life.

Focus on your strengths and delegate or outsource tasks that do not align with your innate abilities. This not only improves efficiency but also ensures that you are engaged and fulfilled by your work.

Consider the following steps to leverage your talents effectively:

  • Assess your skills and identify your strongest areas.

  • Seek tasks and projects that align with your talents.

  • Delegate tasks that are outside your skill set.

  • Continuously refine and develop your abilities through practice and learning.

13. Identify Your Key Constraints

Understanding and identifying your key constraints is crucial to enhancing productivity. Every task or project has bottlenecks that can slow down progress or even grind it to a halt. By pinpointing these constraints, you can focus on finding solutions to overcome them.

Constraints can be internal, such as a lack of certain skills, or external, like resource limitations. Here's a simple way to approach this:

  • Determine the goal of your task or project.

  • List out all the steps required to achieve this goal.

  • Identify which step is the slowest or most challenging.

  • Focus your efforts on improving or eliminating that step.

14. Put the Pressure on Yourself

To overcome procrastination, putting the pressure on yourself is a proactive strategy. It's about creating a sense of urgency and accountability for your tasks. Instead of waiting for external pressures to motivate you, self-imposed deadlines and commitments can drive you to action.

  • Set clear deadlines for each task

  • Commit publicly to your goals

  • Reward yourself for meeting targets

  • Penalize yourself for missing them

By treating your personal deadlines with the same seriousness as external ones, you cultivate a disciplined approach to work. This self-administered pressure can be a powerful motivator, pushing you to prioritize effectively and work more efficiently.

15. Maximize Your Personal Powers

To truly excel and be productive, it's essential to maximize your personal powers. This involves understanding and leveraging your peak energy periods throughout the day. Everyone has times when they feel more alert and energetic. Identifying these prime times and scheduling your most challenging tasks during these periods can lead to more effective and efficient work.

  • Determine your high-energy times

  • Schedule demanding tasks for these periods

  • Ensure rest and recovery to maintain energy levels

Remember, consistency in your daily routine helps to stabilize your energy levels, making it easier to harness and maximize your personal powers. Regular exercise, adequate sleep, and proper nutrition are foundational to sustaining high performance.

16. Motivate Yourself into Action

Finding the drive to tackle your tasks can be challenging, but motivation is a skill that can be developed. Start by setting clear, achievable goals that lead to your larger objectives. Break down these goals into actionable steps to avoid feeling overwhelmed.

Self-motivation is crucial for maintaining productivity, especially when external incentives are absent. Remember, the satisfaction of completing a task is often a reward in itself. To help you stay motivated, consider the following strategies:

  • Visualize the end result and the benefits of completing your tasks.

  • Reward yourself for meeting small milestones.

  • Surround yourself with motivational quotes or affirmations.

  • Keep a progress journal to reflect on your achievements.

17. Get Out of the Technological Time Sinks

In our digital age, it's easy to fall prey to technological time sinks. These are the apps, websites, and digital activities that consume far more time than they're worth, often without us even realizing it. Identifying and avoiding these time sinks is crucial for productivity.

  • Turn off non-essential notifications

  • Allocate specific times for checking emails and social media

  • Use time-tracking apps to monitor your digital habits

Remember, technology should serve as a tool to enhance your efficiency, not a trap that hinders your progress. Regularly audit your technology use and make adjustments to ensure you're in control of your time and not the other way around.

18. Slice and Dice the Task

Breaking down a large task into smaller, more manageable pieces can make it seem less daunting and help you to start working on it. This technique, known as slicing and dicing, allows you to focus on one segment of the task at a time, making progress without feeling overwhelmed.

  • Identify the larger task you need to accomplish.

  • Break it down into smaller, actionable steps.

  • Tackle each step one at a time, completing each before moving on to the next.

Remember, the key is not to let the size of the task deter you. Start with the first slice, and before you know it, you'll have completed the entire task.

19. Create Large Chunks of Time

To enhance productivity, create large chunks of time where you can work uninterrupted on your most important tasks. This approach allows for deeper focus and efficiency.

  • Identify your peak productivity hours

  • Schedule your high-priority tasks during these hours

  • Minimize distractions by turning off notifications and informing others of your focus time

Remember, it's not just the quantity of time spent on tasks, but the quality of that time. Ensuring you have uninterrupted periods is crucial for high-level work that requires undivided attention.

20. Develop a Sense of Urgency

In 'Eat That Frog!', developing a sense of urgency is crucial for high productivity. Act immediately on tasks, as if each one has a tight deadline. This approach pushes you to focus and work with greater efficiency.

  • Recognize the value of time and how it impacts your goals.

  • Prioritize tasks that contribute significantly to your long-term objectives.

  • Avoid the trap of 'busy work' that feels productive but achieves little.

Harness the power of the subconscious mind through affirmations, visualization, and building unwavering faith. Cultivate a positive self-image and embrace continuous learning for personal and professional growth.

21. Single Handle Every Task

The principle of single handling each task is a powerful antidote to procrastination. Focus on one task at a time until completion, resisting the temptation to multitask. This approach not only streamlines your workflow but also ensures that each task receives your full attention and effort.

  • Start by selecting one task to work on.

  • Avoid distractions and commit to the task until it's finished.

  • If interrupted, return to the same task as soon as possible to maintain momentum.

Embrace the habit of single handling to experience a significant boost in your productivity and a reduction in stress. This method aligns perfectly with the ethos of our website, which is about business books and authors, and resonates with the focus on efficiency as highlighted by the United States National Labor Relations Board. Don't forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more insights and tips.


In conclusion, 'Eat That Frog!' by Brian Tracy provides valuable insights and practical strategies for overcoming procrastination and increasing productivity. The book's 21 actionable tips offer a roadmap for individuals to prioritize tasks, manage time effectively, and achieve their goals. Tracy's emphasis on taking immediate action and tackling the most challenging tasks first resonates with readers seeking to enhance their work habits. By implementing the principles outlined in 'Eat That Frog!', readers can develop a proactive mindset and conquer procrastination to accomplish more in less time. This book serves as a compelling guide for anyone looking to boost their productivity and achieve success in both personal and professional endeavors.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is 'Eat That Frog!' about?

Eat That Frog! is a self-help book by Brian Tracy that provides practical strategies for overcoming procrastination and increasing productivity.

Who is the author of 'Eat That Frog!'?

The author of 'Eat That Frog!' is Brian Tracy, a renowned motivational speaker and self-development author.

How can 'Eat That Frog!' help me stop procrastinating?

The book offers 21 actionable strategies and techniques to help readers overcome procrastination and improve time management skills.

Are the strategies in 'Eat That Frog!' applicable to all areas of life?

Yes, the strategies presented in the book can be applied to various aspects of life, including work, personal goals, and daily tasks.

Is 'Eat That Frog!' suitable for people with busy schedules?

Yes, the book is designed to be practical and applicable for individuals with busy schedules, providing effective solutions for managing time efficiently.

Can 'Eat That Frog!' be used as a guide for personal development?

Absolutely, the book not only addresses procrastination but also encourages personal growth and development through its practical advice and strategies.

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