Many people have heard of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People before, but few actually know what the seven habits actually are or how to use them in their daily lives. Each chapter in this book focuses on one of the seven habits and describes how it can be used in everyday life. The habits are listed as follows: Be Proactive; Begin With the End in Mind; Put First Things First; Think Win-Win; Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood; Synergize; and Sharpen the Saw.
Stephen R. Covey is a highly recognized author, especially for this book and its concepts. This book was first published in 1989 and has had a frenzy surrounding it since. Because the world is constantly changing, Covey decided to revise this book in 2004 to make it more up-to-date. Since the release of the new version, it has sold over 15 million copies and has become a #1 bestseller in the nation. So what do each of the habits actually mean?
The 7 Habits is completely focused on how to build upon existing relations and create new ones. One of the main points in the book is that you must have self-peace and be confident in yourself, before you can really build relationships that are foundationally strong and can last.
The order of the habits is very important to the overall concept of the book. The first three habits are focused inwardly, helping us to help ourselves, set goals and stick to them and be at peace with who we are as a person. They also help us to reorganize our life and decide what is truly important and what is not. After the first three have taken root into your everyday life, you have claimed a private victory, meaning you can move onto the last four habits.
These last ones are focused on building relationships with those around us, becoming less selfish, learning to become an empathetic listener, how to create win-win situations, how to compromise without either party suffering, and how to continually reinvent yourself and your lifestyle. These habits can be the hardest to overcome for a person, especially those that are known to care about themselves a lot more than they care about other.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who holds a leadership position or who wants to. Although self reflection and changing yourself can be very intimidating subjects, if you give it a shot and stick with the principles, this book can be of great benefit to yourself and to those around you.
Because it focuses so much on how to build relationships effectively and how to solve problems, this book is applicable in every situation. No matter how big or small the organization that you are in is, this book with help to bind you and your peers together to create harmony. People are also more likely to follow someone that follows these concepts, whether they know it or not.
Lastly, The 7 Habits gives you a new perspective on things that you may have never thought about. For example, I never realized that compromising did not mean getting what you want, it just meant going about it in a different way that suits the needs of others as well. Another point that was made in the book is that you don’t think entirely rational when you let your emotions get in the way, so it is important to take a step back and react to a situation when you are thinking clearly. These are just a few of the things I have learned that I plan to implement in my everyday life.