When I was a Nursery Manager, I learnt about the funny phrase, ‘Eat That Frog’. It’s in the context of managing people and relates to a problem a manager is avoiding or procrastinating about. The author of ‘Eat That Frog’, Brian Tracy encourages his readers to see the frog as the most important thing you need to do that day and to do it first thing in the day, if you have two frogs then eat the biggest first!
I certainly had a frog in my room! I was avoiding challenging a member of staff about their persistent lateness because we had become quite good friends and the lines between us became blurred when it came to my authority over her. My deputy had asked me why I hadn’t spoken to her and I kept saying I would soon. I hadn’t realized that by me not challenging her I was sending a message to other staff that I did not value their good time keeping and I favoured her.
So, the time came for me to address the frog. That morning the Lord reminded me of this scripture, ‘the wounds of a friend are faithful, but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful’. Proverbs 27:6. As soon as my shift began, I called her into my office and addressed the issue. It wasn’t a comfortable conversation, but I felt so relieved after I had done it.
A truly faithful friend and mentor once had to speak to me about an issue she had seen me developing that needed addressing. Her love and care for me meant she could not stand by silently and leave me to it. Because she loved me and wanted the best for me she spoke to me from a heart of kindness and encouragement. It’s wasn’t a comfortable conversation, but it was important and to this day I am deeply grateful she had the courage to eat the frog that day!
This theory can relate to so many areas of our lives. When we avoid something that makes us uncomfortable we suffer and those around us can suffer too. It may be a minor issue like lateness or a bigger issue that has caused conflict. Either way facing it and addressing it when needed, can bring you a sense of peace and relief. When we become consumed with worry our decision-making skills can become impaired. It is so true when people say ‘I feel like a weight has been lifted off my chest’ after they have faced something difficult.
A friend once snapped at me in front of a group of young girls I had been mentoring. I loved this person and I knew they loved me. But in that moment, I felt too hurt to allow them to lead me and I knew if I didn’t speak up it would affect our relationship from moving forward and being the best it could be. I almost vomited when the time came to tell her how I felt about the way she spoke to me. But after I did it, I felt so at peace and our relationship became stronger because of it.
So, like me you may have your own frog you have been avoiding. I want to encourage you to think about it and take the steps needed to address it. You are worth it!
In the spring of this year I knew I needed to start swimming again after a season of inactivity. I knew how beneficial it was to my health issues and that it boosted my mental health. However, I just kept putting it off and off. I worried about the financial implications joining the gym would have on my budget. But instead of looking at my budget and working out if this was a possibility or not, I completely avoided looking at it. After a family swim with my sons that I enjoyed so much I decided it was time to eat my frog. I looked at my budget that evening and made the changes I needed to, so that I could put my health first and join a gym. My new happy place is swimming and as I’m swimming up and down I do think to myself ‘why didn’t I start this sooner?’
I hope you feel encouraged as you face your frogs.
P.s. My frog is pink, and her name is Freeda 😊