#52Tech & Productivity Fortnight+1: Eating Task Animals

Today’s Week 28 post in the #52Tech series also discusses more in the Productivity Fortnight+1 series currently published.

Today we’re going to deal with eating tasks in animal size bites. And of course, there are a couple of tools for that.

Eat the Elephant

one_bite1This running productivity / time management joke  analogy is used in every productivity course I’ve ever sat in.

How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

It now has cut down versions – “Eating the elephant” or “elephant chunks” are two that are used as book titles or organisational names.

The origins for eat the elephant  are unknown, although some credit TMI for this analogy – Time Manager International has provided many organisations worldwide with time management advice for decades now.

Eat the Frog

“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!” ~ Mark Twain

eatthatfrog coverThe concept of eating the frog was taken by author Brian Tracy in a popular productivity book, ‘Eat that Frog!

The basic concept is to take your most important task (see MITs, coming up in Tuesday’s post), especially one that may be disliked, and get it done first thing in the morning. Then, every other task is easy.

Although often linked to the MIT concept, Eat the Frog also differentiates, talking about the worst task, and getting it over and done with. Another way of putting it, in eating metaphors –

If you do the worst thing on your plate first thing in the morning, the rest of the day is a cake walk.

Apps for That

Of course, being a #52Tech post, I located an app that fits the subject.

ElephantBites (iPhone)


ElephantBites is a simple little productivity app for iOS. Free.

You create a project, and chunk it out into bites. To help out, elephant illustrations from all over the world can be selected per project, and once all your bites have been completed, you get an elephant trophy, which goes into a trophy room.

Link: ElephantBites at appstore.

Eat That Frog App

eatthatfrog app

Brian Tracy’s book birthed an app for iOS also. For $2.50 you can have the app where you can establish multiple frogs, and define smaller tasks for accomplishing them. The app also supplies some tracking data.

Link: Eat That Frog app at appstore.

So Many Task Management Apps

The above look fun, but there are many wonderful and feature rich task management systems which also allow for task or project breakdowns and prioritisation of most important ones.

Of importance, select one. If you don’t already have a favourite, consider the following on selection: –

  • Analog or digital or a combination? I spoke about several analog task management and review systems in the Journaling Week posts recently.
  • Synchronised or available across multiple devices?
  • Available over the web, or on computers or mobile devices?
  • Providing functions to meet a particular productivity system like GTD?
  • Features wanted – projects, tags, to-do’s, reminders, priorities, ordering, archival, sub-tasks, levels of tasks, scheduling, calendar or contacts integration?
  • Free, or subscription, or purchase/premium options?
A List of Popular Apps

I currently use Todoist, because it integrates through my gmail, has a Windows client app, a webapp and is on my iPAD also. But several others in the following list also provide across-platform apps, and synch between them.

  • Any.do – iOS, Googlechrome and Android.
  • Todoist – cross-platform and web, plus google mail plugins.
  • Wunderlist – cross-platform, mobile and desktop, fantastic for windows users.
  • Toodledo – another popular choice for cross-platform.
  • OmniFocus – for Mac and iOS, one of the most popular GTD focused systems.

Productivity Fortnight 5

52tech year#52Tech: This was Week 28 post in the #52tech goal – to investigate and share one technology post once a week for 2014. You can find all the posts indexed via the #52tech tag, or top menu option at hunterswritings.com.


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