The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey
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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey is a self-improvement book, first published in 1989. Covey says that most of the people approach their life’s problems in an ad-hoc manner. To be really effective, one should solve the personal and professional problems in life in a systematic manner and with the same core values and ideas. He goes on to detail the seven habits of highly effective people which are as follows:
The first habit is to categorize what is within one’s control and what is not. One should not waste time and energy focusing on events which are beyond their control, rather, they should focus on events which are within their control.
Begin With End In Mind
The second habit is to learn how to develop goals. Setting goals allow for planning of bottlenecks and ways of overcoming them. Goal setting also lets achieving the results in a faster and more efficient manner.
Put First Things First
This habit talks about prioritization in life. One should prioritize what is important in life and what is not. This leads to the better scheduling of the activities so that the goals are achieved.
People should aim for not personal victory where only they win, but for public victory where they win and the others also win. When only individual wins and others lose, there will be growing resentment for that individual. If a deal does not have scope for win-win for all, the deal can be restarted. Working with groups in an office, the superior can ensure that their team members believe that their best interests are protected by their leader and it will be a win-win for all of them.
Seek First To Understand, Then Be Understood
Attentive listening is important for any leader. People do not listen as they do not perceive any value from it. Listening should be done to understand the problem and not with an intent to respond immediately. One can not provide an optimal solution to a problem if they do not understand the problem properly. Listening provides deeper and better understanding of the problem. Not having listening skills and not understanding the problems can hamper the professional life and progression.
The author suggests that the whole is greater than the sum total of the parts. This produces synergy. If one has a bigger network of effective people working on a problem then everyone will put their inputs and perspective on it. The group will come to a better solution than if each of them would have worked on the problem individually.
Sharpen The Law
The final habit helps in growing the other habits to grow and develop. One should take time and ensure that their mental, spiritual and physical self have the time and space they need to imbibe the other habits which slowly become a part of their characters.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey is an international bestseller and has sold more than 25 million copies worldwide, in 40 different languages. It is considered to be one of the best and all-time classic book for self-improvement inspite of the many books available in this genre. This is a highly recommended book for anyone seeking self-improvement and efficiency in their lives.