We’re throwing it back! This week we’re showcasing a guest post from Brian Tracy about the theme from his latest book, the third edition of Eat That Frog!, which we launched on April 17.

A word about frogs: it has been said that if the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long. Your “frog” is your biggest, most important task, the one you are most likely to procrastinate on if you don’t do something about it. It is also the one task that can have the greatest positive impact on your life and results at the moment.


To perform at your best, you must become your own personal cheerleader. You must develop a routine of coaching yourself and encouraging yourself to play at the top of your game.

Most of your emotions, positive or negative, are determined by how you talk to yourself on a minute-to-minute basis. It is not what happens to you, but the way that you interpret the things that are happening to you, that determines how you feel. Your version of events largely determines whether these events motivate or de-motivate you, whether they energize or de-energize you.

To keep yourself motivated, you must resolve to become a complete optimist.

You must decide to respond positively to the words, actions, and reactions of the people and situations around you. You must refuse to let the unavoidable difficulties and setbacks of daily life affect your mood or emotions.

Your level of self-esteem, how much you like and respect yourself, is central to your levels of motivation and persistence. You should talk to yourself positively all the time to boost your self-esteem. Say, “I like myself! I like myself!” over and over until you begin to believe it and behave like a person with a high-performance personality.

To keep yourself motivated and to overcome feelings of doubt or fear, continually tell yourself, “I can do it! I can do it!” When people ask you how you are, always tell them, “I feel terrific!”

No matter how you really feel at the moment or what is happening in your life, resolve to remain cheerful and upbeat. As Viktor Frankl wrote in his bestselling book Man’s Search for Meaning, “The last of the human freedoms [is] to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances.”

It turns out that optimists have four special behaviors, all learned through practice and repetition.

  • First, optimists look for the good in every situation. No matter what goes wrong, they always look for something good or beneficial. And not surprisingly, they always seem to find it.
  • Second, optimists always seek the valuable lesson in every setback or difficulty. They believe that “difficulties come not to obstruct but to instruct.” They believe that each setback or obstacle contains a valuable lesson they can learn and grow from, and they are determined to find it.
  • Third, optimists always look for the solution to every problem. Instead of blaming or complaining when things go wrong, they become action oriented. They ask questions like “What’s the solution? What can we do now? What’s the next step?”
  • Fourth, optimists think and talk continually about their goals. They think about what they want and how to get it. They think and talk about the future and where they are going, rather than the past and where they came from. They are always looking forward rather than backward.

When you continually visualize your goals and ideals, and talk to yourself in a positive way, you feel more focused and energized. You feel more confident and creative. You experience a greater sense of control and personal power.

And the more positive and motivated you feel, the more eager you will be to get started and the more determined you will be to keep going.

What keeps you motivated?