• Neil G

A Quick Guide To Covey's 7 Habits

I mentioned in the introduction to this Habits Week that I would refer to Stephen Covey's 1989 book, The Seven habits Of Highly Effective People. It's still relevant 25+ years on.

There's no way I can do it justice here, I thoroughly recommend that you take the time to read it fully yourself, but I wanted to do a quick summary so you know a little bit about what to expect. This exercise also helps me to clarify my thoughts so it's a win/win.

The book describes an individual's life-cycle in terms of moving through three paradigms: childhood dependence, adulthood independence becoming finally inter-dependence within society.

So, as we move out of our infancy/childhood, where we rely on others to take care of us, we need to develop the first three habits in order to create our independence, where we can make our own decisions and take care of ourselves.

1. Be Proactive - develop the ability to choose how to behave in response to situations

2. Begin With The End In Mind - adopt a personal mission statement and the create and achieve goals that deliver that mission

3. Put First Things First - spend your time on things that help you towards your mission, with a balance between immediate objectives and future ones

However, the independent paradigm has limitations, and we cannot achieve all that we might on our own. So we need a pathway to develop the inter-dependent paradigm, which involves habits 4-6 below.

4. Think Win/Win - seek relationships that are mutually beneficial and promote/reward such behaviour

5. First Understand, Then Be Understood - a key part of interpersonal relationships, listening and understanding from the other's perspective

6. Synergise - use trust and collaboration to find the best solutions

The final habit then encourages to always be looking for ways to grow and improve, and increase our productive capacity.

7. Sharpen The Saw - take time out from getting things done to develop capacity for new things across physical, mental, social and spiritual dimensions

This really is barely scratching the surface, and the author goes into great depth with examples from his own experience so you can really understand the context.

Even if you don't buy in to everything he talks about, at least take on board the idea that by adopting certain 'habits' into your lifestyle, and creating a 'life process' for yourself, you can set yourself in the direction of your goals, your ambitions and your mission.

By the way, no matter what your goals, ambitions or mission, as a life coach I can set you on the right path to your own success. Be they big or small, lofty or modest, drop me a line and we can discuss how you start or indeed continue on your journey.

In the meantime, have a great weekend, wherever you are and whatever you do.


#habits #behaviour #process

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