Many of us have worked on plenty of plans in our life that ended up with failure and each time we ask ourselves what have we done wrong; trying to find a clue. Well not anymore! “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” is the ultimate guide and self-help book when it comes to how we can effectively attain life goals. It’s one of the most famous & best selling books by Stephen Covey; an American educator, author, businessman, and keynote speaker. One of his many powerful quotes is:“Habit is the intersection of knowledge (what to do), skill (how to do), and desire (want to do).”
The book starts with explaining how we can understand our own paradigms. It then inspires us with powerful lessons to attain our life goals by doing simple personal changes following these stages:
1. Dependence: The paradigm under which we were born, relying on others to do everything we want. To move from this stage the first following three habits should be earned:
- Habit 1: Be proactive: Change starts from within, doesn’t it?, This habit encourages us to focus our time and mindset on things we can control instead of wasting our time complaining about things we can’t change.
- Habit 2: Begin with the end in mind: This habit shows us the way to develop a personal mission statement: what we want to be and what is it we want to attain in life.
- Habit 3: Put first things first: This habit teaches us how to set priorities to become more productive and how can we differentiate between what is important and what is urgent.
2. Independence: The paradigm under which we make our own decisions and take responsibility of ourselves. With this comes habit 4, 5 and 6:
- Habit 4: Think win/win: This habit motivates us to seek agreements and relationships that are mutually beneficial and how to see other people as cooperative rather than competitors.
- Habit 5: Seek first to understand then to be understood: If we want to become effective, we need first to listen and understand what the other person is saying.
- Habit 6: Synergize: We must respect and value the differences between us and others so we can be able to use those differences to create new opportunities that benefits everyone.
3. The last stage; Interdependence: The paradigm under which we cooperate in order to achieve something that can’t be achieved independently and that’s where the seventh and last habit falls:
- Habit 7: Sharpen the saw: Our personal productivity will decrease without proper care;
this habit encourages us to take some time off to improve our skills since the greatest asset we have is “ourselves”.
According to Stephen Covey, to be effective we have to end up being interdependent even though some people tend to go independent seeking liberation and to do their own thing alone. However, in reality we are living in an interdependent world that requires leaders and team players but first we must know how to be independent since dependent people have not yet developed the character for interdependence. That’s why the first three habits focuses on self-mastery; achieving the victories required to move from dependence to independence.
Are you tempted enough to read this book now? if you already did, we would really love to hear your feedback. If you haven’t yet, you can find it in: Diwan, Alef or Virgin Megastores. Price ranges from 108 to 135 LE .