The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People was a groundbreaker when it was first published in 1990, and it continues to be a business bestseller with more than 10 million copies sold. The book covers the idea that real success encompasses a balance of personal and professional effectiveness.
Before you can adopt the seven habits, you’ll need to accomplish what Covey calls a “paradigm shift” — a change in perception and interpretation of how the world works. We all have our paradigm or understanding of the world. Our paradigm is the lens that we view the world through.
We are always projecting our perception and intentions on other’s behavior, whether we mean to or not. People see the world not as it is but as they are. This is the beautiful and terrible thing about the world. If we’re willing to accept the fact that people view the world differently, we can learn so much more about the world then being completely shut off to new ideas. This doesn’t mean you have to agree with them. You can simply seek to understand that person.
Covey also dives deep into the concept of “The way you see the problem is the problem.” We talk to ourselves constantly. We aren't aware of it, but our internal dialogue runs at approximately twelve hundred words per minute. Four times faster, then we can speak.
To become a function of our values, we have to make sure we’re analyzing how we’re talking to ourselves. If we listen to everything we tell ourselves we will become a function of our impulses. Self-discipline is hardly present when we’re a function of our impulses.
Covey teaches the reader how to change his outlook on life and the way he talks to himself. He also prompts the reader to ask himself if he is tying himself to his limitless potential or his limiting past.
This book taught me to act with initiative instead of reacting in fear. It changed my perspective and outlook on life.
If you haven’t read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, I highly recommend it. You will go through a process of self-examination unlike ever before. If you’ve read the book, I would love to hear your thoughts on the concepts in the book.