Anyone who’s been in sales for any amount of time has probably heard that expression. “Eat your frog first”. What that means, is that when you have a number of things to do, and one (or more) of them is something you really don’t want to do, chances are you’ll procrastinate and in the end, not get anything done. The concept of ‘eating your frog first’ means that you should take that thing off your list that you really dread doing, and just do it first. Get it out of the way. Then, the rest of your tasks will be easy.
I didn’t really have a ‘frog’ today, but it sort of was. I had been tasked with meeting a co-worker to witness, and support, the firing of an associate. I had been dreading this act since last week. My stomach had been in knots. I wasn’t sleeping. I was having feelings of panic. There are a grand total of ‘zero’ rational reasons as to why I was feeling that way. The person in question had proved to be rather unreliable, their unreliability had affected me personally, I didn’t have any special ties to this person, we didn’t have any relationship outside of our working one. Yet, I was a wreck. I tried to self-analyze why I was feeling that way, and I really didn’t come up with any specific answer other than the idea of meeting someone to let them go just filled me with great discomfort.
Today, as I drove to the appointment meeting place, I had to talk myself into realizing that this event that was to take place in a few minutes, would have absolutely no impact on my life at all. None. I did realize that it would have an impact on the person who was being fired, but I also am cognizant of the fact that they would be just fine and would go on to find another position without any trouble. This would not be the end of the world for them either.
Driving into the neighbourhood where we were to meet, I noted that the person in question was in a vehicle right behind me. I had hoped that I’d be a bit late, and that my co-worker would already be there. Not the case. My anxiety rose to almost full-blown panic attack levels when I met up with this person, and then received a call from my co-worker telling me that they’d misread the address and were actually 20 minutes away, and asking me if I felt comfortable moving forward on my own.
At that precise moment, everything went calm. I was faced with my frog. I had been dreading and fearing my frog for a week and now, there was no escaping it. It was very bizarre how I went from feeling fear, dread and panic to an almost Zenlike state in a matter of seconds. I took a deep breath, and explained to my associate why we were letting her go, and that I regretted that things had not worked out. She was very gracious, and accepting of the decision, and that was it. We parted ways, I went on to finish my day. Just like that.
In the end, I felt silly for all the drama I’d enveloped myself in, and stupid for having let it reach those levels, but, I also know that faced with this same frog in the future, I’ll have a wholly different experience and approach.
I wish there was a way to flip inane feelings off. I think about people who truly are in situations that call for feelings of dread, panic and fear, and it seems ridiculous that my brain would allow such idiocy in the face of simply having to let someone go. I want to be more mindful of not letting my emotions get a hold of me that way, and I hope that by writing this down, I’m cementing the idea in my brain that this lunacy was not necessary.
Oh, and this is ‘Day 2’ of avoiding my evening Facebook binge. Yay me!