Home Personal Growth The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Learn the key ideas of the book by Stephen R. Covey

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

A guide to personal growth and development

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is a method that enables us to achieve our personal and professional goals more easily, and create better work and private relationships. Covey makes us reflect on our habits and stimulates us to change them to reach success in our professional and private life. It is a true guide that accompanies us in the journey from dependency to renewal, and enables us to continue to improve.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
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Redefine success

Success must be redefined: over the last 50 years the literature on this topic seemed to solely focus on social perception, where success is based on the judgement of others and, therefore, the easiest ways to achieve it. In contrast, in literature prior to the 50s, the foundation of success was what we call the Character Ethic: integrity, humility, fidelity, temperance, courage, justice, patience, industry, simplicity, modesty, etc.

Success, as well as happiness, is the integration of these fundamental principles into our basic personality. Thus, the approach shifted from the Character Ethic to the Personality Ethic. The principles that should be integrated are real paradigms through which we see, interpret and create the world and our lives.

The real and profound change is the paradigm shift. To achieve it, the outside-in paradigm (what happens out there affects us in a passive way) must be replaced by the inside-out paradigm (our character, our principles, our paradigms can influence our context and life). This is the first step towards renewal.

A Habit is the intersection of desire (motivation), knowledge (the theoretical paradigm, the what to do and the why), and skill (how to do it). The 7 habits are divided in three parts: the first three habits help us move from dependence to independence, determining private victory. The following three enable shifting from independence to interdependence, defining public victory. The last one is the renewal process, necessary to keep improving.


The key ideas of "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People"

Redefine success
Habit 1: Be proactive
Habit 2: Begin with the end in mind
Habit 3: Put first things first
Habit 4: Think win/win
Habit 5: Seek first to understand, then to be understood
Habit 6: Synergize
Habit 7: Sharpen the saw
Take-home message

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