The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
Part of the culture we’ve built here in Limitless Connect is sharing inspirational stories at our Thursday team meeting. Every week, one of us leads these discussions and shares how these events changed them in their day to day, as others reflect on how they could apply them in their own situations.
In one of our sessions, the lead discussed the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, a book written by Stephen Covey. The book focuses on taking control of your life by not eliminating bad habits, but more on building up good habits.
Among the list, three of the 7 habits I’ve related the most are Habit 1: Be Proactive, Habit 4: Think Win-Win, and Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood.
Habit 1: Be Proactive focuses on self-mastery and moving from dependence to independence.
We are in charge of our life, and we choose how to live it. We use this self-awareness to take responsibility for our choices. As human beings, we have an inherent ability to explore our own character, determine how we view ourselves, and how to control our own effectiveness. Through this session, I’ve realized that being proactive is a choice. While being in that state of consciousness in taking the right steps in achieving this is the best start in handling the other habits.
Habit 3: Put First Things First is about keeping us organized. It teaches us to have the discipline to prioritize our day-to-day actions according to what is the most important and not what is most urgent. In the past, I’ve been used to focusing only on what is urgent and putting out fires, while not being able to accomplish what is truly important. Being reactive on what is in front of us would drive us to a never-ending cycle that will lead us to less or slower achievements. But if we are to prioritize and focus on our bigger goals, it will later surprise us, realizing how much we can do, and master an essential aspect of career success.
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood would be the best approach to solving tough issues involving other people, especially with customers. In my years in the corporate industry, I’ve learned that being an empathic listener creates a pleasant atmosphere in discussing problems. This is by hearing out each other’s thoughts and perspectives on the issue. The key to effectiveness in dealing with others is to be empathic, look at how they see the problem and look at what is important to them. From there, we can offer our views in a way that they can relate to and that they will interpret as meeting their needs.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People include:
Habit 1: Be Proactive
Habit 2: Beginning with the End in Mind
Habit 3: Put First Things First
Habit 4: Think Win-Win
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
Habit 6: Synergize
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw
The 7 Habits is an influential book that gives me a lot of realizations on how, both good and bad, I’m handling things daily. It is also the wake-up call I never thought I needed in improving how I handle things. It is a great guide on how to be more effective in the things you do, and become efficient in meeting your goals. This is a self-help book that I would love to share with a different audience, as it has impacted me a lot more than I thought it would.
P.S. The book was so good that I immediately bought an ebook right after we discussed this in our session.
P.P.S. 15 years after The 7 Habits was published, Stephen Covey released “The 8th Habit” which discusses “Find your voice and inspire others to find theirs”.