The Art of Eating Frogs

Monday March 15, 2021

[To listen to an audio version of this blog post, please click here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1396123/8132113]

What is the best way to eat frogs? Whilst I am certain there are some excellent recipes, my two answers in today’s blog begin with this one: in small bites.

The metaphor is used in time management training to refer to tasks we don’t want to do. Erroneously ascribed to Mark Twain, the quote is, “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.”

In other words, get the distasteful tasks done first, and attack the biggest challenge first.

I’ve been eating three bullfrogs recently. One of the most distasteful ones is my accounts. This is a tadpole I leave alone all year, waiting for it to grow enormous, and then I try to eat it all at once. The sensible members amongst us will say, “Eat it in small bites! If you do your accounts each week, or even each month, you could avoid all this misery!” And they’d be right. Yet, still, I procrastinate.

My second answer is my favourite. If you’re going to eat a frog, add some delicious side dishes!

There I was, suffering. Then the thought came to me, “Listen to some music.” I love music and I believe a part of me didn’t want music on in the background in case the bad taste of the accounts spoiled my great taste in music.

I obeyed the inner voice, and, for a while, my experience of trudging through the accounts changed into more of a dance. The choice of music turned out to be mission critical. The best music for turning eating accounts into an art form was Nouveau Flamenco and relaxing harp music. If you’re open to recommendations, I’d suggest Marc Antoine – a French Flamenco player, and, “Harp Music – Soft, Beautiful, Relaxing, and Healing Songs,” by, I think, “The Harp of Love.”

The impact of dreamy harp reminded me of the story of King Saul – who was troubled by mental torment. The only relief he got was when David played the harp. Accounts, for me, are frogs of torment. Harp triumphs over torment!

Here’s the BIG thought. The Harp music was already ‘charged’ for me with positive associations of a peaceful state of mind. When I played it at the same time as eating the accounts, the sense of peace stored in the harp music was stronger than the sense of disgust experienced in the accounting. I realised that I could borrow from the stored power of the harp to transform the energy drain of the accounts.

And here’s my question to you: Where do you borrow energy from to feel better when facing up to something you’d prefer not to do?

A Moodscope member.

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