South Slope. Asheville.

Monday, June 9, 2014

7 Habits

Once I left college, and had the stint in Uzbekistan, I was in back in Alabama working.  And I really loved the new Books-A-Million in Dothan.  I would go there very often after work and look for some good books.  I was focusing mostly on Business and Self-Help style books.  Stephen Covey's 7 Habits was one I bought and devoured.  A couple of weekends ago, back in Headland (my hometown), I found my copy of this book.  I guess I had passed it on to Mother many years ago.  I don't know that she read it.  It was nice discovering it again.  And I may re-read it again simply for sentimental reasons.
A few things I remember learning from Covey's book, and zealously sharing with others:
1.  The paradigm shift.  This is the story from Covey's book that made an impact: 

And, of course, for me personally - and I think this would hold true for you as well - I have been in some situations like that.  Not necessarily THAT big.  But certainly enough for me to change my perspective.
2.  The win-win.  Often, in our relationship and business dealings, someone always tries to get the upper hand at the expense of the other.  Long-term this is not healthy.  The idea that Covey presented was that finding a win-win solution was the ideal.  Not a win-lose, where you win and the other loses.  And not a lose-win, where you are the doormat and compromise on your principles.  Win-win scenarios are better. You get something you desire.  They get something they desire.  And I remember back then thinking that this strategy was far more like Christ and his principles.
3.  The physical, social/emotional, spiritual and mental aspects of your life, and how they are like a table's legs, each playing a vital role.  Remove one leg, and the table falls over.  For example, you could be zealous about your religious faith, but neglect your body's health and perhaps your relationship with your spouse.  Inevitably, you will topple over.  You could be a fitness guru, but fail to reflect on your life, and maybe not show any gratitude towards others or past events.  Again, a life out of balance.  This balanced-way philosophy influenced me for years and years. 
I remember the first time I saw Stephen Covey on PBS.  It was a show like this.  I thought his bald head looked pretty nice! 

For years I had stopped following Covey.  I read a bit of his First Things First book, but that's all.  In 2012, it surprised me to learn of his death.  He had been in a bicycle accident.

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