Your challenge, if you choose to accept…

On FinerMinds for the next 30 days, we’ll be running a special challenge that will expand your mind in ways you’ve probably always hoped you could, but have just never had the time.

In short, Brian Johnson, has re-released his famous Philosophers Notes.

And while we think Brian is a genius in his own right, these “notes” are actually a summary of some of the greatest personal development and business books in history.

So to give you a little taste of these famous “notes”, we want to invite you to join the Philosophers Notes Challenge, where each day for the next 30 days, Brian will be releasing a new video discussing a different book from his Philosophers Notes collection.

The idea is to get your mind flowing with new juicy insights, and you chatting with like-minded people about your thoughts… regardless of how philosophical they may be… (no judgment, we promise!).

And to kick-start the challenge, today we’ll be studying the famed and highly talked about book: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey.

Here’s one of our favorite quotes from the book:

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People“I believe that a life of integrity is the most fundamental source of personal worth. I do not agree with the popular success literature that says that self-esteem is primarily a matter of mind set, of attitude — that you can psych yourself into peace of mind. Peace of mind comes when your life is in harmony with true principles and values and in no other way.” – Stephen R. Covey from The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

To take part in the challenge, simply watch the 10-minute video above where Brian discusses his insights from the book, and then tell us the #1 thing you’ve learned from today’s challenge below.

 

FinerMinds Team

FinerMinds Team

In our quest to boost your personal growth, we hope to inspire and support you through our content! You can also check us out on Facebook.

677 Comments

  • craigab1 says:

    If you are more than 25-years-old and you haven't made the time to read "The 7 Habits," what's wrong with you? This is only the #1 Most Influential Business Book of the Twentieth Century, with more than 15 million copies sold!

    If you haven't read it, the habits are: 1) Be Proactive; 2) Begin With the End in Mind; 3) Put First Things First; 4) Think Win/Win; 5) Seek First to Understand; 6) Synergy; and 7) Sharpen the Saw.

    As with yesterday's selection, "The Four Agreements," rather than go into detail about what each of those means, I'm going to focus on a couple of the Disruptive Thoughts that struck me as I listened, read, and considered Brian Johnson's PhilosophersNotes summary. With this book especially, however, I can't help but share the ways in which my life has changed as a result of reading Covey's masterpiece more than 15 years ago.

    It was 1994 and I was fortunate enough to be selected to participate in Youth Service America's New Generation Training Program (NGTP). I lived in Washington, DC then, as now, but the three sessions of my class met in San Francisco. It was one of those opportunities that was useful in the moment, but whose powerful impact really only became clear years later. Among many incredible experiences that year, was the chance to read, study, and use Covey's book as a framework for our personal and professional growth and development. NGTP gave all of us so much and asked only a couple of things in return.

    One of things we promised was to create our own personal mission statement and to review and reflect on it once a year for the rest of our lives. In the social profit sector we are all familiar with organizational mission statements. The personal version has the same intent: to define your core values and help you achieve your dreams. This is a cornerstone of Covey's teaching.

    At the beginning of every new year, I review my statement, evaluating my actions against what I know to be important to me. It gets me back on track, if I've drifted. A couple of times I've made changes to my statement, but they have always been minor and usually reflected newly discovered passions or powerful new dreams. I've created a workshop from this process and used it with groups of young people all around the world. I hope after reading my mission, you'll take the time to create your own. Tell your life story. Act boldly to achieve your dreams.

    My mission statement begins like this:

    To love often and much—people and ideas and life itself;
    To take risks every day which challenge me to face my fears;
    To see my dreams as the foundation of my future, and my passions as mortar for the bricks;
    To remember that only I am me, that I am special, and that others are too;
    To learn and grow each day from every moment and every experience . . .

    Whenever I share my mission with others, it helps keep me on track. Feel free to read my whole statement here: Craig's Life & Love.pdf

    Craig's Life & Love.pdf Honestly, with "The 7 Habits," I could probably write for hours about all of the ways my life has changed by embracing the ideas Covey explains. I really hope you'll read it for the first time, or read it again. Let me leave you with a couple of great quotes that capture some of that wisdom.

    First, Oliver Wendell Holmes reminds us that “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”

    And one of my favorites from E.B. White: “I get up every morning determined both to change the world and to have one hell of a good time. Sometimes, this makes planning the day difficult.” Makes you smile, right?!

    • David says:

      I haven't read it. I am not that interested in "Business". Now I don't have to read it because Brian has provided the big ideas in this workshop. I admit that if I had read this before I was 25, things might have worked out differently for me. But at my funeral, I would rather be remembered as fun-loving and serendipitous than always striving for money and business related goals, no matter how well or successfully I acheived them.

      • roynaim says:

        I agree with you about being fun loving and all and it is not about making money. Business is not about making money. At least that is what I try to be. To me business is about passion and about doing the things I love. The things that excites me. Things that make me want to talk about it all day long. I personally enjoy building businesses because that is fun to me. Sure I enjoy the money but through my building businesses I am leaving a legacy of a person who loves CREATING and not destroying.

        • David says:

          Kudos. Especially to the enlightened business person. I certainly am not against business. We, as a society, could not exist as we are without the entrepreneurs and the driving force of the creative, productive, people who run businesses. I certainly would not be living as well as I do if not for them. I am sadly forced to admit that man can never return to the "Hunter Gatherer" society, or the agrarian ideal, because of the needs of our current society and it's population. I guess I should just get on-board and stop wishing for things that will never happen.

    • Myles says:

      "To see my dreams as the foundation of my future, and my passions as mortar for the bricks"

      :)

  • Craig Bowman says:

    If you are more than 25-years-old and you haven't made the time to read “The 7 Habits,” what's wrong with you? This is only the #1 Most Influential Business Book of the Twentieth Century, with more than 15 million copies sold!

    If you haven't read it, the habits are: 1) Be Proactive; 2) Begin With the End in Mind; 3) Put First Things First; 4) Think Win/Win; 5) Seek First to Understand; 6) Synergy; and 7) Sharpen the Saw.

    As with yesterday's selection, “The Four Agreements,” rather than go into detail about what each of those means, I'm going to focus on a couple of the Disruptive Thoughts that struck me as I listened, read, and considered Brian Johnson's PhilosophersNotes summary. With this book especially, however, I can't help but share the ways in which my life has changed as a result of reading Covey's masterpiece more than 15 years ago.

    It was 1994 and I was fortunate enough to be selected to participate in Youth Service America's New Generation Training Program (NGTP). I lived in Washington, DC then, as now, but the three sessions of my class met in San Francisco. It was one of those opportunities that was useful in the moment, but whose powerful impact really only became clear years later. Among many incredible experiences that year, was the chance to read, study, and use Covey's book as a framework for our personal and professional growth and development. NGTP gave all of us so much and asked only a couple of things in return.

    One of things we promised was to create our own personal mission statement and to review and reflect on it once a year for the rest of our lives. In the social profit sector we are all familiar with organizational mission statements. The personal version has the same intent: to define your core values and help you achieve your dreams. This is a cornerstone of Covey's teaching.

    At the beginning of every new year, I review my statement, evaluating my actions against what I know to be important to me. It gets me back on track, if I've drifted. A couple of times I've made changes to my statement, but they have always been minor and usually reflected newly discovered passions or powerful new dreams. I've created a workshop from this process and used it with groups of young people all around the world. I hope after reading my mission, you'll take the time to create your own. Tell your life story. Act boldly to achieve your dreams.

    My mission statement begins like this:

    To love often and much—people and ideas and life itself;
    To take risks every day which challenge me to face my fears;
    To see my dreams as the foundation of my future, and my passions as mortar for the bricks;
    To remember that only I am me, that I am special, and that others are too;
    To learn and grow each day from every moment and every experience . . .

    Whenever I share my mission with others, it helps keep me on track. Feel free to read my whole statement here: Craig's Life & Love.pdf

    Craig's Life & Love.pdf Honestly, with “The 7 Habits,” I could probably write for hours about all of the ways my life has changed by embracing the ideas Covey explains. I really hope you'll read it for the first time, or read it again. Let me leave you with a couple of great quotes that capture some of that wisdom.

    First, Oliver Wendell Holmes reminds us that “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”

    And one of my favorites from E.B. White: “I get up every morning determined both to change the world and to have one hell of a good time. Sometimes, this makes planning the day difficult.” Makes you smile, right?!

  • julieanne says:

    I thought we were still on Day 1. Loved The Four Agreements and was amazed as my day progressed how many times I caught myself "caring what other people think" and was able to turn it around and remind myself to refrain from taking anything personally.
    It's true that it takes a strong will to fully adopt these agreements.
    I like these quotes: "when you are impeccable,you take responsibility for your actions, but do not judge or blame yourself", and "Nothing other people do is because of you. It is because of themselves". Looking forward to Day 2!

    • MarkHoover says:

      Yes, Julieanne, I was tempted to dive into #2 tonight. I feel I have to stick with my program and hold to my commitment so I'm waiting 'til the morning to immerse in the second day. Ain't nothing gonna break my stride! I can see how this early posting can be beneficial for our buddies in Oz, though. Rock on, down under!

      Really…releasing yourself from others' opinions makes a wonderful difference, doesn't it? I felt like I was on cloud 9 all day, particularly in two instances back-to-back. I felt FREE!

      ~ Mark

    • BrianJohnson says:

      beautiful,julieanna!

      LOVE this: "when you are impeccable,you take responsibility for your actions, but do not judge or blame yourself"

      fun! :)

  • julieanne says:

    I thought we were still on Day 1. Loved The Four Agreements and was amazed as my day progressed how many times I caught myself “caring what other people think” and was able to turn it around and remind myself to refrain from taking anything personally.
    It's true that it takes a strong will to fully adopt these agreements.
    I like these quotes: “when you are impeccable,you take responsibility for your actions, but do not judge or blame yourself”, and “Nothing other people do is because of you. It is because of themselves”. Looking forward to Day 2!

  • René Otero says:

    Know this book well. Nice to listen to your Note on this on Brian! This time I really responded to the Quadrant 2 imperative and the idea about Synergy. As a bassist, I can tell you I am NOTHING without one of my amazing drummer friends. With one of them by my side I can make you dance, open your heart, or kick you in the gut with power. ;)

    The Quadrant 2 imperative is really what embracing this challenge is all about. Thanks to all who worked so hard to put this together so that all of us can spend fifty non-urgent and deeply important days together in Quadrant 2!

    My 5 year-old son is fortunate enough to attend a school that uses the 7 Habits for Kids as their core foundation and participates in research with the Coveys. He knows and applies the habits in kindergarten! The other day I said "no" to one of his requests and he said "But Papi, I'm synergyzing." And he was!

    • bluejules says:

      Wow! This is really interesting – wherabouts are you? I work in education here in the UK and can only begin to imagine the impact of schools using the 7 habits for kids as their core foundation! Here in the UK personal development in schools has taken on much more importance over the last 5 years or so, but I have never been convinced that we are going about this in the right way, sometimes dealing with the symptom (eg, having classes for anger management for kids) rather than looking at the cause and instilling all the good stuff from the word go. At the moment my aim is to work with teachers and support staff on all this – I think that's a good place to start!

      • René Otero says:

        I hope so Lincolsmom!

        Hi Jules! We live in the Orlando, FL area. This school is, unfortunately, still the exception rather than the rule, but I love the results I see. The county I live in has a Leadership track that goes from elementary through high school in this particular zone. The kids learn these principles in K and expand on them throughout their 12 years. School management is handled using the Covey terminology explicitly. I posted links below to the book the kids are exposed to as well as the recent book from Steven Covey about this school initiative. My son's school is one of the schools featured in the book. This has been an unexpected blessing, since this just happens to be the school four blocks from our home!

        I have been in education myself for about ten years. Mostly high school and now university. I'm sure I don't need to tell you how much these skills are needed early in life! ;)

        Thanks for the reply! Now off to get this kiddo to school!

        http://www.amazon.com/Leader-Me-Schools-Inspiring

        http://www.amazon.com/7-Habits-Happy-Kids/dp/1416

    • BrianJohnson says:

      that bassist/synergy story gives me goosebumps, René!

      and YES!! special shout outs and thx to the incredibly inspired and inspiring and hard working finer minds/mind valley crew for making this happen and making it look so easy! :)

      and OMG too cool on your son! heheheheh and yayuh! give him a high five for me, please. :)

      "But Papi, I'm synergyzing."

      still smiling… :)

  • René Ot says:

    Know this book well. Nice to listen to your Note on this on Brian! This time I really responded to the Quadrant 2 imperative and the idea about Synergy. As a bassist, I can tell you I am NOTHING without one of my amazing drummer friends. With one of them by my side I can make you dance, open your heart, or kick you in the gut with power. ;)

    The Quadrant 2 imperative is really what embracing this challenge is all about. Thanks to all who worked so hard to put this together so that all of us can spend fifty non-urgent and deeply important days together in Quadrant 2!

    My 5 year-old son is fortunate enough to attend a school that uses the 7 Habits for Kids as their core foundation and participates in research with the Coveys. He knows and applies the habits in kindergarten! The other day I said “no” to one of his requests and he said “But Papi, I'm synergyzing.” And he was!

  • Kauser Huq says:

    DAY 2 The seven habits of highly effective people by Stephen Covey

    I read this book about 7 years back , the first self development book I had ever read. At that time the impact was different as I read it from a very different stand point. Today, I really really understand what this great man has been talking about all these years….and today is the first day that I really understand the Time management module…the synergy part is something that has motivated me to work with others at work and not try to do everything myself…..a lot of deep stuff Brian, even in the six pages of the PDF File, I would have to listen to this one at least two more times to grasp what you have communicated….lots of things to do in this as well….so I’d better get going doing them

  • Kavalloore Muraleedh says:

    Dr. Covey leads us to visions and missions of truthful life. Peace of mind comes with true principles and values. Peace of mind – the great wealth of life, achieving being proactive and responsible. Integrity and commitments bringing joy and happiness. Creations of life, mental and physical, prioritizing things with urgency and result, with effectively and efficiently, with set roles and goals with a sharpened saw, we discover our life!! Great ideas to implement in everyday life! Thank you Brian & Vishen for bringing these ideas into my life.

  • Rob_MacLuan says:

    One of the first books I really DUG into time and again. Every habit is a gem, and worth meditating upon. Still thinking about yesterdays book and how much time I spend thinking about "the good opinion of others".

  • Rob_MacLuan says:

    One of the first books I really DUG into time and again. Every habit is a gem, and worth meditating upon. Still thinking about yesterdays book and how much time I spend thinking about “the good opinion of others”.

  • Lincolnsmom says:

    Your son is going to make an amazing adult 1 day!

  • Kim says:

    What a timely note! As I was listening on my way to work, I realized that the stress management workshop I am leading this morning is based loosly on many of the 7 Habits.

    Terrific! A wonderful affirmation that even if we forget the details (I completely did not remember anything except that I read the book years ago), if we internalize the content it stays with us forever!

  • davybuoy says:

    It's a great book, all of it very useful. But I am coming around to the importance of habit 2 and inparticular the section of the note entitled "Planting Priorities". Without priorities clearly developed and planted deeply in your heart and mind, you expend too much energy directing and motivating yourself to be truly effective.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      hey davy: that one is one of my absolute FAVORITE ideas. I didn't take the time to go off on it in this show b/c, well, there's only so much you can do in 10 minutes, but seeing the importance of deeply planted priorities vis-a-vis discipline has been a huge theme of my life over the last several months and something i'll be talking about a lot more!

      thx for sharing!

    • katrinaT says:

      So true. Its one thing to have a thought about what you want. But to "plant it" (wow, I love that term) is what brings it from your thoughts into the earth. Into your body. And you can't be as effective if you're not clear about what you're working for. A person can stay in their heads forever about their dreams. It becomes a habit. It takes a lot of effort to focus on exactly what you want, plan how to get it and follow it through. It takes a real love and trust in one's self.

  • davybuoy says:

    It's a great book, all of it very useful. But I am coming around to the importance of habit 2 and inparticular the section of the note entitled “Planting Priorities”. Without priorities clearly developed and planted deeply in your heart and mind, you expend too much energy directing and motivating yourself to be truly effective.

  • JKatzer says:

    You're going to be just fine – the mere fact that you are so honest and being so open with where you are at and your commitment to the effort of change makes it a done deal… ; )

  • @Brian: Today I’ve studied the notes on “The Diamond Cutter” and “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. Thanks for the tip.
    Keeping a “Six-Time Book” journal is a great way to work on vague habits like “Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood”. I’m going to implement keeping a “Six-Time Book” journal starting from next week. When can you make that video on how you personally use this Six-Time Book? :)

    TIP for the readers: Here is a great link I've found on how to start using the “Six-Time Book” journal. Check it out:
    http://diamondcuttergroups.com/resources/six-time

    • MaxineH says:

      Thanks for sharing this. I listened to the note a while ago, (I don't think it's part of the 50 day challenge) and while the idea of the 6 time book, sounded great, I couldn't quite picture how it worked. I followed your link, and now it makes more sense. Will add that to my to do list.

      One thought, why wait till next week to start your journal, Brian's always saying we should do it now :-)

    • Tom Carroll says:

      Peter, thanks for the link on using the "Six-Time Book" journal; seems like a simple, practical tool for mindful integration of principles. I'm going to follow your lead and use this approach for integrating some of the core principles from the 50-Day Challenge.

      This approach reminds me of Benjamin Franklin's original 13 virtues journal/charts with some added all-important specificity. I find it fascinating that Franklin's virtues journal was one of Hyrum W. Smith's inspirations for his day planner, which was the one that eventually was paired with The 7 Habits material and became the FranklinCovey Day Planner.

      • marilnjaye says:

        Yes! Ben Franklin's virtues chart was so important to me. I was first exposed to it about twenty years ago and it helped me make some very significant changes in how I used my mind. It was my first exposure to implementing the idea of the power of thoughts.

      • BrianJohnson says:

        exactly what i thought when i read it, tom! so cool. :)

      • @Tom: Thanks for the message (and the e-mail).
        Tell me more about how to implement "Benjamin Franklin's 13 virtues journal/charts". How does it work exactly? Where can I implement it?

        • Tom Carroll says:

          To me, the "Six-Time Book" represents an evolved middle way between Franklin's virtue chart (minimalist) and the FranklinCovey Day Planner (detailed). Here's Ben Franklin's description of the charting technique from his autobiography: http://www.usgennet.org/usa/topic/preservation/bi… I used the Day Planner for years and found it less useful as my computer/PDA team calendar use increased. I discovered that it was taking too much time to manage my time management systems!

          Lately I've been using index cards with principles/commitments written on them that I carry in my pocket and review periodically during the day. What appeals to me about the Six-Time Book is its simplicity, portability, and promotion of balance (hit/miss the mark). It will bring a new level of balance and order to my card practice. Thanks to you and Brian and Peter for sharing! I also am looking forward to the goal monitoring product that the FinerMinds folks are working on. It would be cool to have a FinerMinds portal/aggregator that we could log into and monitor our goals, log our gratitude, and keep track of the products we purchased, etc. I'm just sayin' :-)

    • Deanne says:

      Hey Peter

      Thanks for putting this link in. It makes sense now… I'd like to say I'll use it but no, I wont. As a corollary to that though, I admire your commitment to have a go with the task. Love to hear how you go with it and if you get the results you are seeking.

      Cheers
      Deanne

    • ipurpose says:

      Hi Peter – Great link, thanks for sharing!

    • Linda_in_MI says:

      Thank you, Peter, for the "heads up" on The Diamond Cutter – – I see it is on the PN list, and now really look forward to that book in particular. I've copied out the instructions for the 6-time book and will be starting today!

    • BrianJohnson says:

      peter: you rock! thx for sharing that link and connecting the diamond cutter to 7 habits. very cool.

      and smiling re: the 6-time book video. I think I'm gonna need to make it a practice of mine and get back in the groove on it then do the video!!! (I discarded my old journals , so can't flip back to show how i did it then! :)

  • @Brian: Today I’ve studied the notes on “The Diamond Cutter” and “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. Thanks for the tip.
    Keeping a “Six-Time Book” journal is a great way to work on vague habits like “Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood”. I’m going to implement keeping a “Six-Time Book” journal starting from next week. When can you make that video on how you personally use this Six-Time Book? :)

    TIP for the readers: Here is a great link I've found on how to start using the “Six-Time Book” journal. Check it out:
    http://diamondcuttergroups.com/resources/six-time

    • Maxine says:

      Thanks for sharing this. I listened to the note a while ago, (I don't think it's part of the 50 day challenge) and while the idea of the 6 time book, sounded great, I couldn't quite picture how it worked. I followed your link, and now it makes more sense. Will add that to my to do list.

      One thought, why wait till next week to start your journal, Brian's always saying we should do it now :-)

      • @MaxineH: Nice. Keep me posted on how the “Six-Time Book” journal works out for you.
        The reason I wait to start with keeping “Six-Time Book” journal is because I've learned to be Proactive (Habit 1 of Covey). I've already have the major things planned out for this week. :)

    • Tom Carroll says:

      Peter, thanks for the link on using the “Six-Time Book” journal; seems like a simple, practical tool for mindful integration of principles. I'm going to follow your lead and use this approach for integrating some of the core principles from the 50-Day Challenge.

      This approach reminds me of Benjamin Franklin's original 13 virtues journal/charts with some added all-important specificity. I find it fascinating that Franklin's virtues journal was one of Hyrum W. Smith's inspirations for his day planner, which was the one that eventually was paired with The 7 Habits material and became the FranklinCovey Day Planner.

    • Deanne says:

      Hey Peter

      Thanks for putting this link in. It makes sense now… I'd like to say I'll use it but no, I wont. As a corollary to that though, I admire your commitment to have a go with the task. Love to hear how you go with it and if you get the results you are seeking.

      Cheers
      Deanne

    • Linda_in_MI says:

      Thank you, Peter, for the “heads up” on The Diamond Cutter – – I see it is on the PN list, and now really look forward to that book in particular. I've copied out the instructions for the 6-time book and will be starting today!

    • BrianJohnson says:

      peter: you rock! thx for sharing that link and connecting the diamond cutter to 7 habits. very cool.

      and smiling re: the 6-time book video. I think I'm gonna need to make it a practice of mine and get back in the groove on it then do the video!!! (I discarded my old journals , so can't flip back to show how i did it then! :)

      • @Brian: You're welcome.
        Too bad you discarded your old journals. Would have been great to see how you use the technique in real life.
        I'll try to make a video on my experience on it, at the end of next week.

  • eubielicious says:

    This is another good note, Brian. I read this book many years ago, and don't have it now so can't refer to it, but the summary appears to do it justice.

    Nice that it dove-tails pretty well with yesterday's book 'The Four Agreements', for example 'Don't Make Assumptions' goes well with 'Seek to Understand then to be Understood'.

    I find the quadrant idea is one I remember most clearly from the book and it's the one idea that I've used most often in the meantime. I'm conscious that as I'm sometimes quite scatterbrained, I can get distracted and therefore spend time out of Quadrant II and instead in the dreaded Quadrant IV. Part of the difficulty there is that if I'm not clear on the outcome, it can be difficult to know the difference!

    Again, a great note and lots to think about…

    Euan

    • BrianJohnson says:

      right on, euan!

      and great connection btwn seeking first to understand and not making assumptions. i hadn't made that and love it!

      appreciate your comments and sending smiles and high fives!

      -bri

    • katrinaT says:

      Yes, I noticed that today's note coincides with the first. I would think, though, that there is a general sentiment with PN anyway. Transformation! From every angle. I'm just sitting here reading through the posts and my body is like, electric. Its just humming. The lessons I'm re-membering settling in. And its only day 2!

      I don't think I'm going to recognize myself at the end ot this.

  • eubielicious says:

    This is another good note, Brian. I read this book many years ago, and don't have it now so can't refer to it, but the summary appears to do it justice.

    Nice that it dove-tails pretty well with yesterday's book 'The Four Agreements', for example 'Don't Make Assumptions' goes well with 'Seek to Understand then to be Understood'.

    I find the quadrant idea is one I remember most clearly from the book and it's the one idea that I've used most often in the meantime. I'm conscious that as I'm sometimes quite scatterbrained, I can get distracted and therefore spend time out of Quadrant II and instead in the dreaded Quadrant IV. Part of the difficulty there is that if I'm not clear on the outcome, it can be difficult to know the difference!

    Again, a great note and lots to think about…

    Euan

  • bluejules says:

    I'm in the UK, so I the timing is working out well for me!
    The 7 Habits was the first 'personal development' book I read – about 9 years ago- and I have to admit that at the time, although I could see its brilliance, I didn't find it an 'easy read'. Seven habits seemed like quite a lot for the beginner to take in all at once! But it changed things for ever in more ways than one. Covey's 'principle centred' approach is pretty much timeless. The story about 'sharpening the saw' is one that never loses its power with me, and whenever I find myself too tired to invest time in really important stuff I remind myself of this.
    There's one quote in the book that, above all others, has stuck with me through some 'bad times'. It's something like 'Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.' This always makes me think about how important it is for me to have total control of that space between stimulus and response – because when I've lost that control, that's when less-than-good things have happened.
    The other way in which this changed my life was that when my (then) teenage daughter saw the 7 Habits book, she found another book, written by Covey's son, called 'The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens'. She lived by this book, and her optimism and positivity as a teenager was an absolute joy.

    • mamarevkk says:

      Thanks for sharing the Teen version! I didn't know it existed. While sharing the PN today with my 14YO, he responded with something like, "yeah, but teens don't care about spiritual stuff, they only care about whatever trauma and drama is going on in their life at the moment." Hmmm. I'll go pick up the 7 Habits for Teens today!

      • bluejules says:

        Cheers! I was just talking to my daughter about an hour ago – she is 21 now and has just become a mum. It was nice for her to reflect on how the book influenced her and really laid the foundations for her future. She bought it for all her friends as birthday presents! There's also a workbook, I think. All excellent stuff!

      • BrianJohnson says:

        hehehe. awesome!! :)

        made me think: we've got a high school teacher who's watching the PN TVs with his class during lunch!!!

        • mamarevkk says:

          That is so cool. I was talking with my son on the way to school and we agreed this material is as important (MORE important, to me) than other things they're studying!

    • BrianJohnson says:

      that is GREAT, jules!

      love love love this: 'Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.'

    • Chris2110 says:

      Bluejules, thanks for this quote: 'Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.'

      It reminds me of the GAP that many others speak about. It's in the GAP between out mind's thoughts that we can hear the voice of truth, the Still, Small Voice.

  • bluejules says:

    I'm in the UK, so I the timing is working out well for me!
    The 7 Habits was the first 'personal development' book I read – about 9 years ago- and I have to admit that at the time, although I could see its brilliance, I didn't find it an 'easy read'. Seven habits seemed like quite a lot for the beginner to take in all at once! But it changed things for ever in more ways than one. Covey's 'principle centred' approach is pretty much timeless. The story about 'sharpening the saw' is one that never loses its power with me, and whenever I find myself too tired to invest time in really important stuff I remind myself of this.
    There's one quote in the book that, above all others, has stuck with me through some 'bad times'. It's something like 'Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.' This always makes me think about how important it is for me to have total control of that space between stimulus and response – because when I've lost that control, that's when less-than-good things have happened.
    The other way in which this changed my life was that when my (then) teenage daughter saw the 7 Habits book, she found another book, written by Covey's son, called 'The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens'. She lived by this book, and her optimism and positivity as a teenager was an absolute joy.

  • @MoonWillow6 says:

    I'm thrilled about the program so far! It has been joy to review to of my favorite books, and I look forward to the remaining 48. I'm on the fourth page of my journal and can already feel a stronger sense of spirit and virtue. The 7 Habits is a book which challenges us to review our lives and get the most out of everything we do, and to be more effective with our goals and in our communication with others. Here's to Arete!

  • @MoonWillow6 says:

    I'm thrilled about the program so far! It has been joy to review to of my favorite books, and I look forward to the remaining 48. I'm on the fourth page of my journal and can already feel a stronger sense of spirit and virtue. The 7 Habits is a book which challenges us to review our lives and get the most out of everything we do, and to be more effective with our goals and in our communication with others. Here's to Arete!

  • MaxineH says:

    I love this book. I first read it in 2000, and have gone on to read many of Coveys books, and I have used his planning diary ever since. I have tried to implement his 7 habits in my life, with mixed sucess.
    My main problem is that there is so much in all his books, I never know which one to read first, and end up reading the book, and thinking I'll come back to the exercises later. Which of course, I rarely do.
    However, today after enjoying the tv episode, then the mp3 and the note, I decided I would do the funeral exercise.
    Wow! What a moving, emotional exercise to do. I'm 45, so hopefully I still have many more years of life left in me, but writing down on paper, the exact words I would want a husband, child and friend to say about me, on my death, was so worthwhile.
    I realise that fortunately, I am indeed already on the way to being the person I want to be on my death, but now clearly know the areas that I need to work on more.
    I'm now off to sharpen my saw, a bit of yoga, and then meditation.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      wow! gave me tears in my eyes, maxine! amazing.

      one of the big things I like to do when supporting peeps with the funeral exercise is to use the values you want to be remembered for as guiding stars in our day to day and moment to moment decisions. not talking about beating ourselves up, but, when we find ourselves ready to get angry with someone we love, pause and remember what we want them to remember us for and BE THAT NOW!!! (of course, that takes the ability to be proactive, which is why that's habit #1 :) really cool. then, we have integrity between our highest values and our current practices. and that's a big part of what it's all about! :)

      big hugs and high fives and thx for playing so full out! :)

      -bri

  • Maxine says:

    I love this book. I first read it in 2000, and have gone on to read many of Coveys books, and I have used his planning diary ever since. I have tried to implement his 7 habits in my life, with mixed sucess.
    My main problem is that there is so much in all his books, I never know which one to read first, and end up reading the book, and thinking I'll come back to the exercises later. Which of course, I rarely do.
    However, today after enjoying the tv episode, then the mp3 and the note, I decided I would do the funeral exercise.
    Wow! What a moving, emotional exercise to do. I'm 45, so hopefully I still have many more years of life left in me, but writing down on paper, the exact words I would want a husband, child and friend to say about me, on my death, was so worthwhile.
    I realise that fortunately, I am indeed already on the way to being the person I want to be on my death, but now clearly know the areas that I need to work on more.
    I'm now off to sharpen my saw, a bit of yoga, and then meditation.

  • Ama says:

    Thanks to all. I am struggling with this but willing to make the effort and break the circle of procrastination that has taken over me for the last year. I can identify clearly with everything so far…..and I am willing to take the journey too with much appreciation and gratitude. That must be a good start….to infinity and beyond ;-)

    • Maxine says:

      The first step is always the hardest! Well done for taking it, the effort will be well worth it.

    • JKatzer says:

      You are going to be just fine — willingness to make the effort will break the cycle. Stay focused! j.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      right on, ama!

      agreed with maxine on the first step being the hardest. think of it like a rocket/space shuttle. it takes the most energy to get out of gravitational pull then it's smooth sailing! :)

      and remember to have FUN!!! :)

      • Yetty says:

        Hey Brian, it seems my comments posted on this site is not being displayed. The same thing happened yesterday on the four agreements. Am I really on the list? I haven't even been receiving mails on the 50 day challenge and yet nothing in the spam. I just navigate to this site to follow through the day's challenge. what could be happening? Please let me know what I need to do.

  • Sebas says:

    I love the 7 habits, I particularly like habits 4, 5, 6 since they speak to how we can better 'connect' with others.
    Thanks everyone for putting together this challenge, agree with many that it really helps to spend more time in quadrant 2! :)

    • BrianJohnson says:

      right on, sebas! any specific plans for implementing a favorite idea?! :)

      • Sebas says:

        yep, actually picking up from other comments, I was planning to accompany the 50 day challenge, with a 50 day commitment to complete the six square excercise proposed in the Diamond Cutter, to work on better imprints, among others those considered in habits 4,5,6. In general I love the idea, of little by little rewiring our consciousness, or of doing our mental gardening :)

  • Sebas says:

    I love the 7 habits, I particularly like habits 4, 5, 6 since they speak to how we can better 'connect' with others.
    Thanks everyone for putting together this challenge, agree with many that it really helps to spend more time in quadrant 2! :)

  • Agapey says:

    Ouch this one made me gulp!
    To the extent you're not honouring these commitments, you are not going to get very far in your life.

    I definitely need to plant my priorities deeper, and not bagatalize them because they are commitments I make to myself and for my own benefit…

  • Agapey says:

    Ouch this one made me gulp!
    To the extent you're not honouring these commitments, you are not going to get very far in your life.

    I definitely need to plant my priorities deeper, and not bagatalize them because they are commitments I make to myself and for my own benefit…

  • aebrassa says:

    This is one of the books I haven't read even though it has been around for ages!! I found it dove-tailed very nicely from the 4 Agreements. I was struck very strongly by 2 of the BIG ideas: the first in being respons-able and the idea of being a victim. It wasn't so much about being a victim to other's actions but to MYSELF. I was struck by how often i seem to be the first to self-criticize and how debilitating that can be to be proactive and effective. The second thing that really struck me was the quadrants and being able to place my time into these 4 boxes. It would seem i spend a lot of time in quadrant 4 which inevitably leads me to quadrant 1 to try to DO all of the things i have put off doing 'cause i was spending so much time in quadrant 2! Anyways, i'm going to put these couple of things into practice today: 1. Create some space between the stimulus and the response (and use the 4 agreement in this space) and 2 spend a little more time in quadrant 3!

    I'm really enjoying all the responses – thanks everyone for posting…and at the beginning of day 2 am feeling more inspired and focused!!!

  • Anna B says:

    This is one of the books I haven't read even though it has been around for ages!! I found it dove-tailed very nicely from the 4 Agreements. I was struck very strongly by 2 of the BIG ideas: the first in being respons-able and the idea of being a victim. It wasn't so much about being a victim to other's actions but to MYSELF. I was struck by how often i seem to be the first to self-criticize and how debilitating that can be to be proactive and effective. The second thing that really struck me was the quadrants and being able to place my time into these 4 boxes. It would seem i spend a lot of time in quadrant 4 which inevitably leads me to quadrant 1 to try to DO all of the things i have put off doing 'cause i was spending so much time in quadrant 2! Anyways, i'm going to put these couple of things into practice today: 1. Create some space between the stimulus and the response (and use the 4 agreement in this space) and 2 spend a little more time in quadrant 3!

    I'm really enjoying all the responses – thanks everyone for posting…and at the beginning of day 2 am feeling more inspired and focused!!!

  • I took two major things away from this:

    1) Focus your time only on what is Important (determined by clarifying your priorities)
    2) Be efficient with time and effective with people.

    The first one I can implement right away (and the quadrant model should help with this). The second one is going to take some work. I guess it comes down to this: We will always be able to make time to do things (like maybe not watching the movie we had been looking forward to all day? :)) and what is really important is connecting with people. So for me, connecting with people is going to be a priority – if doing this delays some of my projects and educational goals then I'll just have to deal.

    And, yeah, those projects? They're down to 3 now and it feels a lot better.

  • I took two major things away from this:

    1) Focus your time only on what is Important (determined by clarifying your priorities)
    2) Be efficient with time and effective with people.

    The first one I can implement right away (and the quadrant model should help with this). The second one is going to take some work. I guess it comes down to this: We will always be able to make time to do things (like maybe not watching the movie we had been looking forward to all day? :)) and what is really important is connecting with people. So for me, connecting with people is going to be a priority – if doing this delays some of my projects and educational goals then I'll just have to deal.

    And, yeah, those projects? They're down to 3 now and it feels a lot better.

  • Kauser Huq says:

    DAY 2 The seven habits of highly effective people by Stephen Covey
    I read this book about 7 years back , the first self development book I had ever read. At that time the impact was different as I read it from a very different stand point. Today, I really really understand what this great man has been talking about all these years

  • marlonlindsay says:

    The reinforcement from Covey today is the idea of habit six (synergy–the whole is greater than the sum of its parts) and habit four (think win/win). Looked at differently, life is like a puzzle with no two pieces being alike and no extras. Every piece is needed. In order for the puzzle to be complete (synergy) every piece has to be in its unique place. That is, no piece of the puzzle can replace another of the puzzle. Each piece must be in place for the next piece to be in place (win/win.) Life is service. Service is the elevation of self through the elevation of others. That's win/win which create synergy, the completion of a puzzle with the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. Be well.

  • Dianna says:

    Wow, tools to reach our visions and missions of truthful life. Peace of mind comes with true principles and values. To borrow Kavalloore's words above "Peace of mind – the great wealth of life, achieving being proactive and responsible. Integrity and commitments bringing joy and happiness." Creating one's life through emotional, spiritual, phsyical. mental and intellectual sharpness to live in quadrant two – in this we truly live. Awesome ideas to provide regiment to our thinking and to implement in our daily actions! Thank you B & V for the PN Challenge.

  • Dianna says:

    Wow, tools to reach our visions and missions of truthful life. Peace of mind comes with true principles and values. To borrow Kavalloore's words above “Peace of mind – the great wealth of life, achieving being proactive and responsible. Integrity and commitments bringing joy and happiness.” Creating one's life through emotional, spiritual, phsyical. mental and intellectual sharpness to live in quadrant two – in this we truly live. Awesome ideas to provide regiment to our thinking and to implement in our daily actions! Thank you B & V for the PN Challenge.

  • taxicoach says:

    I must have read this book almost 20 years ago and not much me stuck at that time but "win-win". More recently I've really practiced beginning with the end in mind. I'll write my perfect life in 6 years like it's already happened in the present tense and even include sounds and smells. I then break the 6 years into 18 month Growth curves and write specific goalls to keep moving me forward. I've been doing this for 3 years and it's amazing how much easier life becomes and how impossible goals end up being not so impossible to achieve.

    • Chris2110 says:

      Taxicoach, awesome! I have a practice similar to this. Just curious. What made you decide on 6 years as the future point?

      In addition to writing my future, I also "edit" my past. Oops, sound too much like 1984 and re-writing history. No, not like that. I write the experience as it happened, then circle anything within that story which seemed less than desireable. Those are the bits that I edit out, or parts I re-writer. (Example: if my back hurt on that long flight, I take the back ache out when re-writing. Put in that I did this or did that, and my back felt really good.)

      Thanks to Stuart Lichtmann for originally describing such a practice I've found a beneficial. Lichtmann says the edits and re-writer help attract to you the kind of experience you want next time.

      • taxicoach says:

        Hi Chris,
        I have a personal development coach, Dr. Tom Hill of the Eagle Institute. His lessons are based on the teachings of Jim Rohn (see JimRohn.com). I've taken these lessons and passed them on to my coaching group of about 24 managers and directors at my company (I'm the CEO). We had our best year ever last year and forecast even better numbers this year (our 26th).
        I've never heard of Lichtmann or the re-writes but it sounds very interesting.

  • taxicoach says:

    I must have read this book almost 20 years ago and not much me stuck at that time but “win-win”. More recently I've really practiced beginning with the end in mind. I'll write my perfect life in 6 years like it's already happened in the present tense and even include sounds and smells. I then break the 6 years into 18 month Growth curves and write specific goalls to keep moving me forward. I've been doing this for 3 years and it's amazing how much easier life becomes and how impossible goals end up being not so impossible to achieve.

  • Kavalloore Muraleedh says:

    Dr. Covey leads us to visions and missions of truthful life. Peace of mind comes with true principles and values. Peace of mind – the great wealth of life, achieving being proactive and responsible. Integrity and commitments bringing joy and happiness. Creations of life, mental and physical, prioritizing things with urgency and result, with effectively and efficiently, with set roles and goals with a sharpened saw, we discover our life!! Great ideas to implement in everyday life! Thank you Brian & Vishen for bringing these ideas into my life.

  • Kavalloore Muraleedh says:

    Dr. Covey leads us to visions and missions of truthful life. Peace of mind comes with true principles and values. Peace of mind

  • michaeljking says:

    This was an excellent choice for day 2!! Understanding the second habit sheds light on why some projects succeed and other falter. If in our thinking we are creating the first part of something (for good or ill) then we really need to make sure those thoughts are what we would like to happen rather than our fears!!

  • Cindy says:

    This is probably the single most influential book on my life, outside of the Bible. It was also one of the first of it's kind that I had read several years ago. I found it packed with wisdom and well thought out. I have yet to implement all habits at the same time, however. I think right now I need to focus on the four quadrants and get some things balanced out, as well as putting in more time in sharpening the saw. Now, where's that quadrant? I think I'm going to need that today! Thanks, Brian! Looking forward to tomorrow.

  • ejudith says:

    I, too, read this book many years ago – as well as a few times since. With today's note, the funeral exercise really stood out. Having done it several times before, I noticed today that it only took a matter of seconds to visualize that scenerio before I felt completely clear and realigned with what matters most in my life. I am going to add this to my tool box for times when I feel overwhelmed and stressed as a way to quickly get me back on track. Loving the program! Hugs to all! :)

    • BrianJohnson says:

      love it, ejudith!

      i just posted this above with maxine and thought you might dig as it relates to the funeral exercise! (which i, too, find super powerful)

      "one of the big things I like to do when supporting peeps with the funeral exercise is to use the values you want to be remembered for as guiding stars in our day to day and moment to moment decisions. not talking about beating ourselves up, but, when we find ourselves ready to get angry with someone we love, pause and remember what we want them to remember us for and BE THAT NOW!!! (of course, that takes the ability to be proactive, which is why that's habit #1 :) really cool. then, we have integrity between our highest values and our current practices. and that's a big part of what it's all about! :)"

      hugs and hugs! :)

      -bri

  • JohnDulworth says:

    Yo! Ok, first off what I am noticing this morning is this: what a treat it is to have so many people in my morning practice. I'm digging it. I am grateful to all of you out there that are challenging yourself and trying on new ideas and new ways of being with yourself. An aspect of me was reluctant to add this 50 day challenge to what I was already taking on in my life for 2010, BUT so far so great.

  • JohnDulworth says:

    Yo! Ok, first off what I am noticing this morning is this: what a treat it is to have so many people in my morning practice. I'm digging it. I am grateful to all of you out there that are challenging yourself and trying on new ideas and new ways of being with yourself. An aspect of me was reluctant to add this 50 day challenge to what I was already taking on in my life for 2010, BUT so far so great.  Knowing that there is a group of people out there (1000+, right?) exploring all this great wisdom, buoys me. I hope each one of you is experiencing the kinds of breakthroughs that make you smile.

    • katin4 says:

      I second that! I feel great energy around all this, and just knowing we're all here doing this together really turbo-started my morning with energy and "keeping my word" with Tai-Chi and meditation, followed by the new PN!

      And, Pow! Today's blog post was a breeze and a joy to write, and I've already ticked off like four other things off today's list as well.

      It may just be beginner's buzz, but it is certainly wonderful. :)

    • katrinaT says:

      I'm digging your post.

  • JohnDulworth says:

    Yo! Ok, first off what I am noticing this morning is this: what a treat it is to have so many people in my morning practice. I'm digging it. I am grateful to all of you out there that are challenging yourself and trying on new ideas and new ways of being with yourself. An aspect of me was reluctant to add this 50 day challenge to what I was already taking on in my life for 2010, BUT so far so great.  Knowing that there is a group of people out there (1000+, right?) exploring all this great wisdom, buoys me. I hope each one of you is experiencing the kinds of breakthroughs that make you smile.

  • JohnDulworth says:

    Yo! Ok, first off what I am noticing this morning is this: what a treat it is to have so many people in my morning practice. I'm digging it. I am grateful to all of you out there that are challenging yourself and trying on new ideas and new ways of being with yourself. An aspect of me was reluctant to add this 50 day challenge to what I was already taking on in my life for 2010, BUT so far so great.  Knowing that there is a group of people out there (1000+, right?) exploring all this great wisdom, buoys me. I hope each one of you is experiencing the kinds of breakthroughs that make you smile.

  • JohnDulworth says:

    Yesterday’s book was perfect for my day. I hung out with 2 of the four agreements yesterday: making my word impeccable (especially as it relates to my inner narrative – read: self criticism – and the commitments I make for myself). Secondly, I focused on simply doing my best. I had a strong day but waned a bit late afternoon sliding back into old ways of being with myself. It felt familiar and easy. Somehow, I rallied and got back to my commitment. This morning I am finding that the “doing my best” perspective is helping alleviate the harsh inner dialogue that normally accompanies a slide like the one I experienced yesterday. And in actuality, I can’t practice either agreement and still beat myself up. They (the agreements and the harsh inner narrative) are mutually exclusive

  • JohnDulworth says:

    Today: I am happy that this book is up for us today mostly because, I’ve never read it and have always been curious about it. But also because I am interested in what makes people (me) successful. I work for myself from my apartment. This is a recipe that will highlight all sorts of vulnerabilities (which is why I recently gave up cable TV). I am happy to have chosen this path/way of working because as it turns out, in order to be successful, I have to truly pay attention, hone my self discipline and work habits and the way in which I hold my commitments and word. It’s a perfect for developing the self. With the 7 Habits I am focusing on numbers one and three because they bring my attention to how I use my time which is where I am practicing a lot these days. Combine these with the two agreements from yesterday and I have a one-two punch on the day. Can’t wait to add my update tomorrow. Oh and what the heck, if I Begin With the End In Mind, then I already can see how kick ass my day is going to be so I’m throwing that one in as a bonus for myself. Dig it.

    • Chris2110 says:

      John, I hear you about "a recipe that will highlight all sorts of vulnerabilities" for those of us who are our own bosses working from home offices. I agree with you that Habits 1 and 3 are vital. Also, I add habit 7, but I don't limit "sharpening my saw" to only things like exercise. Since I live by my wits (don't ask about my net worth), it's vital that I keep sharperning them in every way I can. Great comment.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      hehe
      nice, john!!

      so true and here's to rockin' it! :)

  • gokitefly says:

    I recommend viewing the PDF for the time management quadrants. Now, if you'll excuse me, I must go spend time in quadrant II for my morning workout! :)

  • Nanax5 says:

    Amazing. I have enjoyed the Philosopher's Notes for some time now. But I feel this program is a bit like nitroglycerin…applied under the tongue to an individual, it can be medicinal and life saving. But shake it up, stir it up and apply it in the right manner and it can move mountains!

    Blessings to us all as we unite to move mountains.

  • Nanax5 says:

    Amazing. I have enjoyed the Philosopher's Notes for some time now. But I feel this program is a bit like nitroglycerin…applied under the tongue to an individual, it can be medicinal and life saving. But shake it up, stir it up and apply it in the right manner and it can move mountains!

    Blessings to us all as we unite to move mountains.

  • melabutcher says:

    Aloha Tribe!
    I hope this moment finds you inspired and breathing deeply :)
    Viva la Quadrant number 2…Important but not urgent !!! A very helpful reminder of managing my energy wisely, and the number one habit reminder I needed and the number one habit I commit to focusing on.
    I am ALL ABOUT "Sharpen the Saw" which I love and has made a huge difference in my life, mainly through a daily commitment to several practices I do without fail the most compelling of which has been meditation, meditation meditation. There I said it three times..I must REALLY mean it! Feel free to ask me how to find great meditation instruction if you are ready and I will be happy to share my resources. There are many different styles and one will be just right for you. GO HUMANS! Thanks again for this awesome opportunity Brian Vishen and all! See you manana!

    • RyanSullivan says:

      Well…how do I find great meditation instruction??? Thanks a million!!!

    • blkdog says:

      I was happy to come across your post and your insight into mediation as I very much think that the universe has provided this opportunity for me. This past year has been one of tremendous personal growth for me as well as many challenges. I have been able to read much more and am working on becoming a more aware, compassionate person trying to live in the moment. As part of my path, I have read about meditation and wanted to begin the New Year by learning some basic meditation techniques and acknowledging the different types that are available so that I could put a daily ritual in place. I have researched and found many resources, but they are without recommendation…so I was happy to read your words and thought I would reach out as I would welcome any insight that you can share into meditation and how to begin a daily practice.

      • melabutcher says:

        Hi there!
        I would be delighted. nmediation has made such a differnce in my life. I sort of stumboed around for a LONG TIME trying this and that on my own without any real guidance. Once I found really masterful, intelligent and compassionate instruction, the practice took off and transformed my life. So, if you email me at mela@yogiworld we can talk and I can help you find a style that would be best suited to you. I take great joy in offering this to community because I believe in mediations' transformative powers! Happy to talk on the phone too!

    • BrianJohnson says:

      i second ryan's request on the great meditation resources!!!

      and this made me laugh "Viva la Quadrant number 2"!! :)

      hehehehe. love it.

  • melabutcher says:

    Aloha Tribe!
    I hope this moment finds you inspired and breathing deeply :)
    Viva la Quadrant number 2…Important but not urgent !!! A very helpful reminder of managing my energy wisely, and the number one habit reminder I needed and the number one habit I commit to focusing on.
    I am ALL ABOUT “Sharpen the Saw” which I love and has made a huge difference in my life, mainly through a daily commitment to several practices I do without fail the most compelling of which has been meditation, meditation meditation. There I said it three times..I must REALLY mean it! Feel free to ask me how to find great meditation instruction if you are ready and I will be happy to share my resources. There are many different styles and one will be just right for you. GO HUMANS! Thanks again for this awesome opportunity Brian Vishen and all! See you manana!

  • kimwentz says:

    I thought I owned this book, but it's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families. I see that the seven habits are the same though. Has anyone read both?

    I think I'm going to have quite a long list of books to read after this challenge! I'm looking forward to it.

  • kimwentz says:

    I thought I owned this book, but it's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families. I see that the seven habits are the same though. Has anyone read both?

    I think I'm going to have quite a long list of books to read after this challenge! I'm looking forward to it.

  • chan5820 says:

    day 2, great book that has teach me to be conscious in my reactions,to begin living the life you desire,do the important things first {am guilty here, somehow there is a million thing that distract you when you decided to do something that is important}
    this a habit that will bring power to your life if you can master it, Making sure I take the time to understand others before trying to get them to understand me is very sensible thing to do. and to take time from my so call busy schedule and allow my self to smell the rose. I am much more educated person for reading this book.

  • chan5820 says:

    day 2, great book that has teach me to be conscious in my reactions,to begin living the life I desire,to do the important things first {am guilty here, somehow there is a million thing that distract you when you decided to do something that is important}
    this a habit that will bring power to your life if you can master it, Making sure I take the time to understand others before trying to get them to understand me, is a very sensible thing to do. and to take time from my so call busy schedule and allow my self to smell the rose. I am a much more educated person for reading this book.

  • marilnjaye says:

    I just want to make another comment re: yesterday's note. I found it SO HELPFUL to me throughout the day yesterday. I felt like I made some significant progress with that "Do your best but your best is not always the same" idea (paraphrasing). And thanks to the comments on my comment yesterday. It's frustrating that I am not usually at a computer where I can reply to the replies!

  • marilnjaye says:

    I just want to make another comment re: yesterday's note. I found it SO HELPFUL to me throughout the day yesterday. I felt like I made some significant progress with that “Do your best but your best is not always the same” idea (paraphrasing). And thanks to the comments on my comment yesterday. It's frustrating that I am not usually at a computer where I can reply to the replies!

  • Brendalove says:

    Love this note~!~ I haven't read the book but been meaning to read it so now got some work to do (natch) :) I like to think I am * reponse~!~ able * but hey I have got to be more consistent every single day !! Another one is *NO* I have a hard time saying *no* I am practicing that one Brian* NO * with ( nice intent ) How's that Brian? : ) so loving this challenge what a difference in 2 days already . I really love Senergy together we can do so much ~ sharpening the saw is hey putting the cart before the horse ya it has to be worked on too !! : ) Gonna be a changed woman my husband will be asking where Brenda went to hehehe !! ~ In Love of Oneness~xXx

  • Angela says:

    Ah, Covey — a master at stating the obvious, but sometimes the obvious may not be so obvious when we are consumed in the busy-ness of day to day life. My favorite is "Seek first to understand, then to be understood." Being present in the moment and truly listening before jumping in to explain or express your own viewpoint takes much practice I have found. I am helping to raise my 14 y/o grand daugther and I just learned this great communication technique called 'HIL' which stands for Humor, Inquiry, and Love. At the core of this process is to seek understanding from the viewpoint of the other person. We can always agree to disagree, but gaining the understanding is immensely valuable. Have an awesome day everyone!

  • Angela says:

    Ah, Covey — a master at stating the obvious, but sometimes the obvious may not be so obvious when we are consumed in the busy-ness of day to day life. My favorite is “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.” Being present in the moment and truly listening before jumping in to explain or express your own viewpoint takes much practice I have found. I am helping to raise my 14 y/o grand daugther and I just learned this great communication technique called 'HIL' which stands for Humor, Inquiry, and Love. At the core of this process is to seek understanding from the viewpoint of the other person. We can always agree to disagree, but gaining the understanding is immensely valuable. Have an awesome day everyone!

  • David says:

    Lots of good ideas for the business oriented person. Some good ideas for the rest of us.

  • AFGrant says:

    I’ve heard of this book for a long time but never cared about reading it as I thought it was only about business. (Hmmm… there's a pesky old assumption) I didn’t like my job enough to care to bother reading about being more effective at it. Somehow saw that as giving more to the company, not to myself.

    This note certainly opened my eyes. I was shocked to see so many of the same themes covered in more “spiritual” books showing up here in a "business" one.
    Habit #1 – being proactive is all about raising your own awareness. Something I’ve worked on a lot over last few years thanks to Holosync and some great books. Never expected a “business” book to talk about raising your consciousness. Guess that means I had a rather low one. : )

    • BrianJohnson says:

      yah. good stuff.

      i'm passionate about integrating biz and spirituality (like by getting paid (really well :) to chat with you and write these notes :)

      we'll be talking about this a LOT more b/c I think WAY too many "spiritual" peeps shoot themselves in the foot economically and then we're left with a world run by peeps who know how to make money but not how to live. we need BOTH, eh?!? :)

    • Chris2110 says:

      AFGrant. Absolutely right about same themes in business books and those in clearly "spiritual" books. These are Universal Principles,wherever we decide to apply them.

      I noted some time ago that a lot of really cool self-development principles were turning up in books on sales. (SALES!!!) Maybe the emphasis there was on aquiring a Ferrari instead of personal fullfillment — but surpringly the principles are the same.

  • AF Grant says:

    I’ve heard of this book for a long time but never cared about reading it as I thought it was only about business. (Hmmm… there's a pesky old assumption) I didn’t like my job enough to care to bother reading about being more effective at it. Somehow saw that as giving more to the company, not to myself.

    This note certainly opened my eyes. I was shocked to see so many of the same themes covered in more “spiritual” books showing up here in a “business” one.
    Habit #1 – being proactive is all about raising your own awareness. Something I’ve worked on a lot over last few years thanks to Holosync and some great books. Never expected a “business” book to talk about raising your consciousness. Guess that means I had a rather low one. : )

  • claudiobasso says:

    Namaste and thank you. I am so becoming happy to find this in the morning. Today I wish to start from something I teach my students all of the times – I do training for photographers – What is the difference between being efficient and effective? I am looking for a dead on answer in the bull's eye. I leave you with this question to fire up some more discussion and tomorrow I will give you my personal answer. As for today's note one more brownie point to Brian – I am starting to wish you were living close to me – To be proactive is to say thanks for all the beautiful things we are given in life. To be a lazy ass is an act of arrogance towards the miracle of creation. I remember every time I enter the shower in the morning, I get this image of the cowboys of the wild west or the Indians who all had to go outside by the river and wash up in cold water. And so I thank the universe for the comfort of having warm water in the shower to wash with. Being proactive also means taking a moment to appreciate and to thank the creator of all the magic around us. Listen to me, depressed or not depressed – and I just came out of a bad one – nothing helps more than stepping outside and look at nature, I personally like the birds because they draw the meaning of freedom with their happy flight. So to learn to be proactive starts from everything around us. Commitments >>> Obligation >>>>>>>> Effort >>>>> Imposition. I say $uck that ! if you have to make a commitment to something it means it is not honest, it requires external extra energy to make it happen. So concentrate on your true self and make that commitment an honest part of yourself that flows naturally. I know I am being strong but I believe in this.

    To stimulate more discussion I will ink a little more polemic spicing on the dish. Begin with the end in mind >>>> Live like if you were dead ?!?! All things are created twice ?!?! Bad idea to smoke the Bong and then sit down to write, sorry Dude. If this is some sort of fashionable approach to the Law of Attraction… I am an artist and so I think I know about creating – at least most artists think they do :>) Before you can create or be perceptive towards art, there is an entire cleansing process you have to undergo to be ready, mentally and physically. I see life like an incessant creation process. I do understand the meaning behind this concept, there are way too many people these days that feel like they are in a prison (maybe a corporate one?) without realizing they offered to enter it themselves. Doing First things First and learn how to say NO are excellent suggestions at least for me. It all comes down to kindness and confusion. My wife says that I am always too prone to help strangers when I should be investing more time taking care of our things. She is right, but when you have experienced the high of helping it is very hard to stay away… And I am leaving you with a comment on Win/Win as I feel I am already abusing the real estate of the comment area. Win/Win should be the name of a new University course and all corporate execs and Wall Street cats should be obliged to attend and complete with honors. Allow me to be a little rebellious here. I believe USA needs to move from a structure of CAN I? to one of SHOULD I? as I wrote in my previous comment. We all need a new start, for a new life, a new business, a new ethic, a new love kindness, a new world ruled by love. hey… are you in?

    • David says:

      hear hear!

    • Chris2110 says:

      Claudio, what secret do you posses that let's you post a comment this long? I keep getting messages that what I've written is too long, (please close message) though I hadn't written nearly as much as you've posted here?

      Are you a Jeddi Warrior of IntenseDebate that you can post this much?

      • claudiobasso says:

        I am not a Jeddi but I do have friends that come from a very dark side, a very very dark side, I mean a very very very dark side :>)
        p.s. = I suggest you forward your question to Brian as unfortunately I can't answer you. Positivity flying to you right now :>)
        Claudio

      • katrinaT says:

        I was wondering the same thing! I saw his post and said "oh, there's hope for me" but alas …NOT! Ha!

    • BrianJohnson says:

      wow. talk about going off, claudio! :)

      re: your polemic re: getting clear on what you want to create vis-a-vis cleansing: it's a "yes, and," for me. :)

      and the suspense builds with your question!!! :)

      fun! :)

  • claudiobasso says:

    Namaste and thank you. I am so becoming happy to find this in the morning. Today I wish to start from something I teach my students all of the times – I do training for photographers – What is the difference between being efficient and effective? I am looking for a dead on answer in the bull's eye. I leave you with this question to fire up some more discussion and tomorrow I will give you my personal answer. As for today's note one more brownie point to Brian – I am starting to wish you were living close to me – To be proactive is to say thanks for all the beautiful things we are given in life. To be a lazy ass is an act of arrogance towards the miracle of creation. I remember every time I enter the shower in the morning, I get this image of the cowboys of the wild west or the Indians who all had to go outside by the river and wash up in cold water. And so I thank the universe for the comfort of having warm water in the shower to wash with. Being proactive also means taking a moment to appreciate and to thank the creator of all the magic around us. Listen to me, depressed or not depressed – and I just came out of a bad one – nothing helps more than stepping outside and look at nature, I personally like the birds because they draw the meaning of freedom with their happy flight. So to learn to be proactive starts from everything around us. Commitments >>> Obligation >>>>>>>> Effort >>>>> Imposition. I say $uck that ! if you have to make a commitment to something it means it is not honest, it requires external extra energy to make it happen. So concentrate on your true self and make that commitment an honest part of yourself that flows naturally. I know I am being strong but I believe in this.

    To stimulate more discussion I will ink a little more polemic spicing on the dish. Begin with the end in mind >>>> Live like if you were dead ?!?! All things are created twice ?!?! Bad idea to smoke the Bong and then sit down to write, sorry Dude. If this is some sort of fashionable approach to the Law of Attraction… I am an artist and so I think I know about creating – at least most artists think they do :>) Before you can create or be perceptive towards art, there is an entire cleansing process you have to undergo to be ready, mentally and physically. I see life like an incessant creation process. I do understand the meaning behind this concept, there are way too many people these days that feel like they are in a prison (maybe a corporate one?) without realizing they offered to enter it themselves. Doing First things First and learn how to say NO are excellent suggestions at least for me. It all comes down to kindness and confusion. My wife says that I am always too prone to help strangers when I should be investing more time taking care of our things. She is right, but when you have experienced the high of helping it is very hard to stay away… And I am leaving you with a comment on Win/Win as I feel I am already abusing the real estate of the comment area. Win/Win should be the name of a new University course and all corporate execs and Wall Street cats should be obliged to attend and complete with honors. Allow me to be a little rebellious here. I believe USA needs to move from a structure of CAN I? to one of SHOULD I? as I wrote in my previous comment. We all need a new start, for a new life, a new business, a new ethic, a new love kindness, a new world ruled by love. hey… are you in?

    • Chris2110 says:

      Claudio, what secret do you posses that let's you post a comment this long? I keep getting messages that what I've written is too long, (please close message) though I hadn't written nearly as much as you've posted here?

      Are you a Jeddi Warrior of IntenseDebate that you can post this much?

    • BrianJohnson says:

      wow. talk about going off, claudio! :)

      re: your polemic re: getting clear on what you want to create vis-a-vis cleansing: it's a “yes, and,” for me. :)

      and the suspense builds with your question!!! :)

      fun! :)

  • AFGrant says:

    Another surprise to me is how little Quadrant II seems to be about actual work. But then I do see I’ve been much happier in my work since I’ve been doing more QII practices – meditation, exercise, growth and transformation work. Time to give myself some credit for that.

    Habit #2 was another shocker. I was amazed to see something so close to “thoughts become things” and the law of attraction in a business book.

    Overall, this note points out something I've long struggled with – clarity.
    Today I'll use meditation and writing exercises to get more clarity over exactly what I want for my priorities and goals.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      right on, AF! even just a couple minutes of journaling every day is HUGE! in my experience, when I'm lacking clarity, the consistency of a few minutes (or more) daily to check in on what's important is way more important that the once a month/year binges. :)

      i'm going to be recommending a LOT of exercises (like the funeral exercise today) that, if you do them, will boost your clarity significantly!!!

      other ones I love:
      – what 5 things are you most proud of?
      – what 5 things *will you be* most proud of?
      – when do you feel most alive? doing what? around whom?
      – if you had all the time and all the money in the world, what would you (after you're done traveling, giving money to family/etc. :)?
      – if you were guaranteed to succeed, what would you do?
      – what would you do if you weren't afraid?
      – what's the #1 thing you could start doing today that, if you did it consistently, would have THE greatest positive impact on your life? (positive ritual)
      – what's the #1 thing you could STOP doing, that, if you stopped doing it, would have the greatest positive benefit in your life?!? (negative ritual)

      I've answered all of those many times, some dozens of times. it's big. (self-awareness in my evolving philosophy: http://www.philosophersnotes.com/blog/23/overview

      rock it, bro!

      -bri

    • BrianJohnson says:

      right on, AF! even just a couple minutes of journaling every day is HUGE! in my experience, when I'm lacking clarity, the consistency of a few minutes (or more) daily to check in on what's important is way more important that the once a month/year binges. :)

      i'm going to be recommending a LOT of exercises (like the funeral exercise today) that, if you do them, will boost your clarity significantly!!!

      other ones I love:
      – what 5 things are you most proud of?
      – what 5 things *will you be* most proud of?
      – when do you feel most alive? doing what? around whom?
      – if you had all the time and all the money in the world, what would you (after you're done traveling, giving money to family/etc. :)?
      – if you were guaranteed to succeed, what would you do?
      – what would you do if you weren't afraid?
      – what's the #1 thing you could start doing today that, if you did it consistently, would have THE greatest positive impact on your life? (positive ritual)
      – what's the #1 thing you could STOP doing, that, if you stopped doing it, would have the greatest positive benefit in your life?!? (negative ritual)

      I've answered all of those many times, some dozens of times. it's big. (self-awareness in my evolving philosophy: http://www.philosophersnotes.com/blog/23/overview

      rock it, bro!

      -bri

    • Chris2110 says:

      AFGrant,

      Ditto on clarity. I work on that every day too, not because I'm still as fogged over as I used to be, but because every new day brings sharper vision.

      Too bad that the 7 Habits seems at first to be focused totally on business — just goes to show what a big ELEPHANT business is that it seems to blot out every other endeavor in life. Ultimately, though, some of us are able to define for ourselves what "business" is in our lives. As an artist, I recognize business elements, yet they no longer dominate my existence as they did when I was still in the corporate world.

      Ironically, as I tried to show in my own comment, awareness of the 7 habits led me out of that world and into one of my own. (But Covey doesn't get all the credit .)

  • AF Grant says:

    Another surprise to me is how little Quadrant II seems to be about actual work. But then I do see I’ve been much happier in my work since I’ve been doing more QII practices – meditation, exercise, growth and transformation work. Time to give myself some credit for that.

    Habit #2 was another shocker. I was amazed to see something so close to “thoughts become things” and the law of attraction in a business book.

    Overall, this note points out something I've long struggled with – clarity.
    Today I'll use meditation and writing exercises to get more clarity over exactly what I want for my priorities and goals.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      right on, AF! even just a couple minutes of journaling every day is HUGE! in my experience, when I'm lacking clarity, the consistency of a few minutes (or more) daily to check in on what's important is way more important that the once a month/year binges. :)

      i'm going to be recommending a LOT of exercises (like the funeral exercise today) that, if you do them, will boost your clarity significantly!!!

      other ones I love:
      – what 5 things are you most proud of?
      – what 5 things *will you be* most proud of?
      – when do you feel most alive? doing what? around whom?
      – if you had all the time and all the money in the world, what would you (after you're done traveling, giving money to family/etc. :)?
      – if you were guaranteed to succeed, what would you do?
      – what would you do if you weren't afraid?
      – what's the #1 thing you could start doing today that, if you did it consistently, would have THE greatest positive impact on your life? (positive ritual)
      – what's the #1 thing you could STOP doing, that, if you stopped doing it, would have the greatest positive benefit in your life?!? (negative ritual)

      I've answered all of those many times, some dozens of times. it's big. (self-awareness in my evolving philosophy: http://www.philosophersnotes.com/blog/23/overview

      rock it, bro!

      -bri

  • AF Grant says:

    Another surprise to me is how little Quadrant II seems to be about actual work. But then I do see I’ve been much happier in my work since I’ve been doing more QII practices – meditation, exercise, growth and transformation work. Time to give myself some credit for that.

    Habit #2 was another shocker. I was amazed to see something so close to “thoughts become things” and the law of attraction in a business book.

    Overall, this note points out something I've long struggled with – clarity.
    Today I'll use meditation and writing exercises to get more clarity over exactly what I want for my priorities and goals.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      right on, AF! even just a couple minutes of journaling every day is HUGE! in my experience, when I'm lacking clarity, the consistency of a few minutes (or more) daily to check in on what's important is way more important that the once a month/year binges. :)

      i'm going to be recommending a LOT of exercises (like the funeral exercise today) that, if you do them, will boost your clarity significantly!!!

      other ones I love:
      – what 5 things are you most proud of?
      – what 5 things *will you be* most proud of?
      – when do you feel most alive? doing what? around whom?
      – if you had all the time and all the money in the world, what would you (after you're done traveling, giving money to family/etc. :)?
      – if you were guaranteed to succeed, what would you do?
      – what would you do if you weren't afraid?
      – what's the #1 thing you could start doing today that, if you did it consistently, would have THE greatest positive impact on your life? (positive ritual)
      – what's the #1 thing you could STOP doing, that, if you stopped doing it, would have the greatest positive benefit in your life?!? (negative ritual)

      I've answered all of those many times, some dozens of times. it's big. (self-awareness in my evolving philosophy: http://www.philosophersnotes.com/blog/23/overview

      rock it, bro!

      -bri

    • Chris2110 says:

      AFGrant,

      Ditto on clarity. I work on that every day too, not because I'm still as fogged over as I used to be, but because every new day brings sharper vision.

      Too bad that the 7 Habits seem at first to be focused totally on business — just goes to show what a big ELEPHANT business is that it seems to blot out every other endeavor in life. Ultimately, though, some of us are able to define for ourselves what “business” is in our lives. As an artist, I recognize business elements, yet they no longer dominate my existence as they did when I was still in the corporate world.

      Ironically, as I tried to show in my own comment, awareness of the 7 habits led me out of that world and into one of my own. (But Covey doesn't get all the credit .)

  • TheaWestra says:

    Thank you Brian, and thank you too Peter Komrakov (http://www.komrakov.com), I like that link you shared: http://diamondcuttergroups.com/resources/six-time
    I have the 4 Agreements pinned up at my desk. Now for some saw sharpening! That's definitely my challenge. I do so love to keep sawing.
    I did smile when you said "way back in '95". I felt a little aged when you mentioned it. Way back for me is more like the 70's. :) My first personal development book was by Dale Carnegie. Cheers, Thea
    P.S. Re. what Kauser Huq [about 3 comments above me] wrote: "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered." -Nelson Mandela

    • Chris2110 says:

      Thea, thanks for pointing out that terrific Mandela quote that Kauser Huq shared earlier. So many messages, so much to respond to that it's easy to miss something great.

      "There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered." — this describes exactly how I experience the 7 habits right now.

      Thanks!

  • thank you everyone, for sharing in this experience. YOU are remarkable :)

    1+1=3+

    That principle is what resonated the most with me this morning. In my experience, every time I brought other people around me that were smarter than I, magic happened.

    Many times when I tried (there's that word "try" ;) ) to go it alone, I didn't get as far because I was the only one to model after in the moment.

    Wow, this definitely isn't the easiest thing to publicly reflect on what I can improve on, though it's definitely refreshing.

    Thanks for playing, and may your day be blessed.

    be well
    matthew

    • BrianJohnson says:

      amazing, matthew!

      thx for sharing and love everything you said! from the "YOU Are remarkable" (holy omg how cool is everyone here?!? :) to the courage it takes for us to share our imperfections.

      awesome

      and YES on the 1+1+1. this challenge is a PERFECT example of it. me + Mind Valley = 1,000,000x the power of me+me. i love to identify what my zone of genius is (two days from now we'll be doing the big leap where I discuss) and then see if i can play there exclusively and partner with peeps who are in THEIR zone of genius! that's what we've done with PhilosophersNotes and it's remarkably inspiring!

      appreciate all your energy!

      -bri

  • GratefulMatthew says:

    thank you everyone, for sharing in this experience. YOU are remarkable :)

    1+1=3+

    That principle is what resonated the most with me this morning. In my experience, every time I brought other people around me that were smarter than I, magic happened.

    Many times when I tried (there's that word “try” ;) ) to go it alone, I didn't get as far because I was the only one to model after in the moment.

    Wow, this definitely isn't the easiest thing to publicly reflect on what I can improve on, though it's definitely refreshing.

    Thanks for playing, and may your day be blessed.

    be well
    matthew

    • BrianJohnson says:

      amazing, matthew!

      thx for sharing and love everything you said! from the “YOU Are remarkable” (holy omg how cool is everyone here?!? :) to the courage it takes for us to share our imperfections.

      awesome

      and YES on the 1+1+1. this challenge is a PERFECT example of it. me + Mind Valley = 1,000,000x the power of me+me. i love to identify what my zone of genius is (two days from now we'll be doing the big leap where I discuss) and then see if i can play there exclusively and partner with peeps who are in THEIR zone of genius! that's what we've done with PhilosophersNotes and it's remarkably inspiring!

      appreciate all your energy!

      -bri

  • KWright says:

    Kaboom! My "to do" list just became my "Commitment Inventory." Way more powerful, and a way better filter for what goes on the list in the first place. You're right, Brian, this book is a classic for a reason. Thanks for the refresher!!

  • KWright says:

    Kaboom! My “to do” list just became my “Commitment Inventory.” Way more powerful, and a way better filter for what goes on the list in the first place. You're right, Brian, this book is a classic for a reason. Thanks for the refresher!!

  • Linda_in_MI says:

    Joy to all from Snowy, Frigid Michigan (yeah, it's cold but the sun is shining)!

    What a perfect choice for day 2! I first read this book years ago, but had forgotten how powerful it is.

    What struck me most was the notes on Habit 2 – Begin with the End in Mind, in which Brian states, "Let’s begin with the end in mind and live with integrity to our ideals as we transform our lives."

    Three of my best friends are coming over this weekend for a Dream Board "party." We'll each be creating visuals for the dreams we consider the most important in our lives, both personal and professional. I love how this fits into the "Begin with the End in Mind" process. Covey Says:

    “If you were to fault yourself in one of three areas, which would it be: (1) the inability to prioritize; (2) the inability or desire to organize around those priorities; or (3) the lack of discipline to execute around them? … Most people say their main fault is a lack of discipline. On deeper thought, I believe that is not the case. The basic problem is that their priorities have not become deeply planted in their hearts and minds. They haven’t really internalized Habit 2 [Begin with the end in mind].”

    Dream Boards/Vision Boards are an amazing tool for "planting priorities in the heart and mind," and this note has given me much to think about in terms of creating and using them.

    Make your Day Magnificent –
    Linda

    • BrianJohnson says:

      WOW WOW WOW!

      more goosebumps. this is EXTRAORDINARILY cool, linda! thx for sharing. so cool you and your friends will be having a dream board party and omg I couldn't think of a better quote to align with for that party! (that' one of my all-time faves and I just commented above that i'm going to be talking about that idea a LOT more!)

      big smile and here's to making our days magnificent fer sure! (and thx for helping make mine so! :)

      -bri

    • Chris2110 says:

      To Linda in frigid, snowy Michigan from Chris is snowy, frigid Chicago. You are really going to HEAT THINGS with that Dream Board "party." Awesome idea! Let us know what develops.

      Thanks also for your reminder of asking ourselves in which of the three ways we fault ourselves. Ah, key points. Prioritize seems to me to assume that we are already really clear on our dream goal, our mission.

      Have fun and think creative thoughts!

    • julieanne says:

      I just created my first vision board last weekend! Following that activity with this amazing "note" really drives home the point that you quoted from the 7 habits. It does come down to deeply implanting our priorities in our hearts and minds.__Sending warm wishes your way !

    • boris505 says:

      WOW! You are totally right. I also tought that the lack of discipline to execute them was my primary fault. But after I read your toughts I am convinced that perhaps my priorites does not come from my heart.
      I feel that my true dreams have vanished somewhere. And my next task will be to find them again and plant them back to my heart.

      I am grateful for your deep insights.

      Sunny greetings to Michigan from Slovenia, a small country in the heart of Europe,
      Boris

  • Linda_in_MI says:

    Joy to all from Snowy, Frigid Michigan (yeah, it's cold but the sun is shining)!

    What a perfect choice for day 2! I first read this book years ago, but had forgotten how powerful it is.

    What struck me most was the notes on Habit 2 – Begin with the End in Mind, in which Brian states, “Let’s begin with the end in mind and live with integrity to our ideals as we transform our lives.”

    Three of my best friends are coming over this weekend for a Dream Board “party.” We'll each be creating visuals for the dreams we consider the most important in our lives, both personal and professional. I love how this fits into the “Begin with the End in Mind” process. Covey Says:

    “If you were to fault yourself in one of three areas, which would it be: (1) the inability to prioritize; (2) the inability or desire to organize around those priorities; or (3) the lack of discipline to execute around them? … Most people say their main fault is a lack of discipline. On deeper thought, I believe that is not the case. The basic problem is that their priorities have not become deeply planted in their hearts and minds. They haven’t really internalized Habit 2 [Begin with the end in mind].”

    Dream Boards/Vision Boards are an amazing tool for “planting priorities in the heart and mind,” and this note has given me much to think about in terms of creating and using them.

    Make your Day Magnificent –
    Linda

  • Kim says:

    What a timely note! As I was listening on my way to work, I realized that the stress management workshop I am leading this morning is based loosly on many of the 7 Habits.

    Terrific! A wonderful affirmation that even if we forget the details (I completely did not remember anything except that I read the book years ago), if we internalize the content it stays with us forever!

  • allieh says:

    The #1 thing I got out of today's Note? The lesson regarding EFFECTIVENESS vs. EFFICIENCY with regard to people. Save the efficiency for use with my time & my schedule, but don't subject the people in my life to it in the same manner. This is a good reminder when dealing with my 6-year-old son, to whom I find myself saying more than I like, 'c'mon, we don't have time!' Ditto my husband.

    What can I do in my life to implement it? By dropping my personal agenda and priorities on a regular basis just to hang with them.

    Thanks for this Note!

  • allieh says:

    The #1 thing I got out of today's Note? The lesson regarding EFFECTIVENESS vs. EFFICIENCY with regard to people. Save the efficiency for use with my time & my schedule, but don't subject the people in my life to it in the same manner. This is a good reminder when dealing with my 6-year-old son, to whom I find myself saying more than I like, 'c'mon, we don't have time!' Ditto my husband.

    What can I do in my life to implement it? By dropping my personal agenda and priorities on a regular basis just to hang with them.

    Thanks for this Note!

    • BrianJohnson says:

      wow. huge!!!

      more goosebumps. this has been a big one for me as well!

      thx for sharing and so inspired by your commitment! :)

    • snoopydance says:

      Thnx Allieh… for you have inspired me. Well said, my friend! Our personal agendas seem to have a tendency to 'take over'… and instead… we can choose to just hang with them! Cool! ;)

  • robrave says:

    Ah, this book. I know this in college. Our professor ask us to write a book report about this. And, of course, this is the very first and I considered one of the best books I have ever read since then. It teach me that two people looking at the same thing might have opposite opinion and yet they are both right. Since then, I always consider possible perspectives and angles for the possible solutions to a problem. There are a lot more in this book but all in all, it is one of the best :)

  • SunshineKay says:

    So many great thoughts…soooo fast. I'm becoming concerned about really processing all this wisdom fast enough! I haven't really utilized the lessons from Day 1 and we are on to Day 2. In changing habits and developing new ones it takes some repetition and practice…. How do you recommend we approach this challenge? I want to get the most out of this journey…

    • BrianJohnson says:

      hey kay:

      i know, huh?! i think it's really important for you to honor your own rhythms and sense of what tempo feels best for you. altho we're going to go thru these 50 books in 50 days, there's nothing that says you can't let em simmer and go thru them in 500 days if that feels best!

      HUGE themes of my work/these books are the ideas of trusting ourselves + learning to approach growth with a sense of diligence, patience, persistence and playfulness. so, again, I say: follow your heart and have fun! if you jump in for the 50 in 50, laugh and realize it'll be a super quick immersion that'll allow you to circle back after if you like and if decide to take your time and focus on implementing rather than total immersion (or do something entirely diff), that's awesome !!!

      big hugs and high fives and lemme know if that resonates!

      -bri

    • Chris2110 says:

      Brian will have recommendations, but I'm throwing in my impression. Keep going anyway. One clear statement on moving on to new concepts before the old have been digested comes from "The Path of Least Resistance" (also in the Notes, though I haven't checked yet to see what Brian has included.) The author was originally a musician. While studyiing, he complained that he couldn't move to the next lesson because he had not yet mastered last week's. His master teacher told him itmove on and not cling to the old. After six weeks or so, the student was surprised to discover he had somehow mastered the early lessons while working on the new. Learning was mysteriously cumulative. I found this true when studying Ancient Greek. I felt I wasn't keeping up (in spite of always doing my best) but found that by the end of the month that I had somehow learned those lessons that left me feeling uncertain.

      This principle is very true in working with the types of books Brian has included in the Notes. Keep going, and by Day 50 you'll be amazed by the principles that will have shaped themselves in your mind.

      • Chris2110 says:

        Adding a note to remind myself as well. One of the secrets to learning is to RELAX, both physically and mentally, rather than tense up and trying to bear down.

        The 3-2-1 Relaxation method of the Silva training systems are excellent at achieving the type of relaxation that doesn't send you to sleep but really wakes up the brain and consciousness.

        Or, any other relaxatin method that induces alertness will work as well. One recommendation for PhotoReading is to visualize a tangerine just above your head. No room here to describe the reasons why this works, but it does. For one thing, the color orange is the strongest in catching the brain's attention.

        • SunshineKay says:

          Thanks for your response….I was overwhelmed and froze. I'm used to learning in a very linear method. Letting in as many great ideas and seeing what sticks or hits a special cord will be my new approach. Going back and reviewing is always open. In other words…I'm going to try flying!
          Thanks again for your insight. It helped.

  • Jeff Thomas says:

    What an awesome book. Read it years ago and its time for a re-read. I see many powerful parallels between 7 habits & 4 agreements. Both emphasize always being impeccable with our words and living with integrity by always doing our best and honoring our commitments. If done properly, this will allow us to live primarily in Quadrant II the happiness zone. Private victory always precedes public victory is big for me. Reminds me of Ruiz advising us to not be concerned with the opinions of others. Brian's reference to Pavlovian Dog's reminded me of the fact that my domestication often causes me to react rather than to be proactive and response-able. I also got that we need to be action oriented by beginning w/ the end in mind and taking action towards that goal daily all while enjoying the journey. Putting first things first is necessary for us to do our best. Think win/win allows us to operate from the positive perspective of a creative rather than a competitive mindset. Seek 1st to be understand is the link between win/win and synergy. If we can understand the other's perspective, then we can create a solution that we both benefit from. When we do this, we not only win, but others associated with us win as well. 1+1=3+. My specific mission in life is to enjoy the journey to the fullest and positively impact all those that I am connected to…

    • BrianJohnson says:

      how great!

      thx for sharing, jeff. really really dig it!!!

      -bri

    • Chris2110 says:

      Jeff, YES! Thanks for the reminder of that powerful statement: PRIVATE VICTORY ALWAYS PRECEDES PUBLIC VICTORY. Since Covey published his book long ago, seems like every writer in the human potential fields has found ways of making this key point.

      It is an ancient point. The I CHING and similar books of wisdom are full of this truth. Everything is first created in the mind before it manifests in the material world.

      • Jeff Thomas says:

        Chris, Thx for the feedback. It is interesting that thoughts becoming things is at the philosophical core of personal development. Old school examples are Think and Grow Rich, As a Man Thinketh, Science of Getting Rich, Man's Search for Meaning and many many others. It is very empowering to become aware of this universal law and practice applying it to life. It also carries with it a great deal of Response-Ability :) I like Mike Dooley's mantra "Thoughts become things, so choose the good ones!".

    • Jeff Thomas says:

      Oh and Sharpen the Saw… its so easy to get caught up in the rat race and not be able to see the forest through all the trees. This Challenge is an awesome example of the entire tribe investing the time to Sharpen Our Saws. Love it!

  • Jeff Thomas says:

    What an awesome book. Read it years ago and its time for a re-read. I see many powerful parallels between 7 habits & 4 agreements. Both emphasize always being impeccable with our words and living with integrity by always doing our best and honoring our commitments. If done properly, this will allow us to live primarily in Quadrant II the happiness zone. Private victory always precedes public victory is big for me. Reminds me of Ruiz advising us to not be concerned with the opinions of others. Brian's reference to Pavlovian Dog's reminded me of the fact that my domestication often causes me to react rather than to be proactive and response-able. I also got that we need to be action oriented by beginning w/ the end in mind and taking action towards that goal daily all while enjoying the journey. Putting first things first is necessary for us to do our best. Think win/win allows us to operate from the positive perspective of a creative rather than a competitive mindset. Seek 1st to be understand is the link between win/win and synergy. If we can understand the other's perspective, then we can create a solution that we both benefit from. When we do this, we not only win, but others associated with us win as well. 1+1=3+. My specific mission in life is to enjoy the journey to the fullest and positively impact all those that I am connected to…

  • Thomas says:

    Hi friends, after finishing todays note I focused exclusively on Brians last question: What's my specific mission in life?
    I wrote… let it flow… and what a powerful answers came out. SO important. At least for me as I have so many things I want to do in this life. This note and exercise helped me to clarify with the end in mind.
    I'm blessed to be on this challenge with you guys ;-)

  • Thomas says:

    Hi friends, after finishing todays note I focused exclusively on Brians last question: What's my specific mission in life?
    I wrote… let it flow… and what a powerful answers came out. SO important. At least for me as I have so many things I want to do in this life. This note and exercise helped me to clarify with the end in mind.
    I'm blessed to be on this challenge with you guys ;-)

  • Pattie says:

    Once again I'm in the right place at the right time to be hearing this. I'm gonna take the 1st step and focus onthe 1st step. thank you xxxx

  • WOW WOW WOW! First thank you for the challenge – great stuff. I as many have read this before – but certainly needed the refresher.

    It is very interesting to read the comments and how people picked up on different things.

    The connections between the 4 agreements and 7 habits was INTEGRITY – I guess that tells you something where I am at in my life. Made me jump a little because today I told myself that I would get up early and exercise – but I didn't do it – and there right there in Brian's note was "integrity to those commitments" WOW

    Have a great day everyone.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      hey daniel. love it.

      i just chatted with maxine (above) about how she did the funeral exercise and it blew her away. i said this and thought you might like it as it relates to INTEGRITY (a theme I'm passionate about, too! :)

      "one of the big things I like to do when supporting peeps with the funeral exercise is to use the values you want to be remembered for as guiding stars in our day to day and moment to moment decisions. not talking about beating ourselves up, but, when we find ourselves ready to get angry with someone we love, pause and remember what we want them to remember us for and BE THAT NOW!!! (of course, that takes the ability to be proactive, which is why that's habit #1 :) really cool. then, we have integrity between our highest values and our current practices. and that's a big part of what it's all about! :)"

    • Chris2110 says:

      Daniel, love that dog! BOW-WOW-WOW. I agree on the zero point, the center of the target, being INTEGRITY.

      Oh those things we tell ourselves we "should do." The ultimate INTEGRITY, I think it become absolutely certain they come from YOU and YOUR TRUE VALUES. There are so many out there telling us we should be doing this, doing that.

      Paul Bauer ( <a href="http://www.dreamsalive.com)” target=”_blank”>www.dreamsalive.com) has said that the dirty little secret of the self-help game is that often there is some part of us that does not want the change our surface mind tells us we ought to make. Getting the agreement of the SUBCONSCIOUS is vitally important. Someone said (I'll have to look up who) that "the problem is never solved by the same mind that created the problem."

      Oh, I think that was Einstein. And others have added that the change in our behavior is not really made by the same mind that announces we should get up early or exercise more. Find ways to get the SUBCONSIOUS to really hear you and believe what you're telling it.

  • danielwilliams says:

    WOW WOW WOW! First thank you for the challenge – great stuff. I as many have read this before – but certainly needed the refresher.

    It is very interesting to read the comments and how people picked up on different things.

    The connections between the 4 agreements and 7 habits was INTEGRITY – I guess that tells you something where I am at in my life. Made me jump a little because today I told myself that I would get up early and exercise – but I didn't do it – and there right there in Brian's note was “integrity to those commitments” WOW

    Have a great day everyone.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      hey daniel. love it.

      i just chatted with maxine (above) about how she did the funeral exercise and it blew her away. i said this and thought you might like it as it relates to INTEGRITY (a theme I'm passionate about, too! :)

      “one of the big things I like to do when supporting peeps with the funeral exercise is to use the values you want to be remembered for as guiding stars in our day to day and moment to moment decisions. not talking about beating ourselves up, but, when we find ourselves ready to get angry with someone we love, pause and remember what we want them to remember us for and BE THAT NOW!!! (of course, that takes the ability to be proactive, which is why that's habit #1 :) really cool. then, we have integrity between our highest values and our current practices. and that's a big part of what it's all about! :)”

  • vandana2009 says:

    Rereading the gist of 7 habits after eight years reemphasized the need for revisiting your favortie readings and reconnecting with the useful ideas that tend to dim with time. This is where the PN has its niche! Now I can go back to all my faves anytime I want to.
    The point that struck me most, and the one habit that I indeed had forgotten in all these years is the need to write your mission statement and to revisit it often.. It gives you an anchor to hold to and not stray too far. It can also be the basis for time management, for deciding one's priorities, for sharpening the saw.. in short, for mastering the self. I plan to rewrite mine again, and not lose it this time.

  • vandana2009 says:

    Rereading the gist of 7 habits after eight years reemphasized the need for revisiting your favortie readings and reconnecting with the useful ideas that tend to dim with time. This is where the PN has its niche! Now I can go back to all my faves anytime I want to.
    The point that struck me most, and the one habit that I indeed had forgotten in all these years is the need to write your mission statement and to revisit it often.. It gives you an anchor to hold to and not stray too far. It can also be the basis for time management, for deciding one's priorities, for sharpening the saw.. in short, for mastering the self. I plan to rewrite mine again, and not lose it this time.

  • 1moreseeker says:

    :) NO :) I am sharping my saw- YES,YES,YES. :)
    loving all the synergy in the comments.
    love,love,joy,joy-I celebrate where we are one.

  • 1moreseeker says:

    :) NO :) I am sharping my saw- YES,YES,YES. :)
    loving all the synergy in the comments.
    love,love,joy,joy-I celebrate where we are one.

  • Chris2110 says:

    My first employer sent me to 7 Habits workshops. From the start I was proactive, emphasized on the important-but-not urgent, considered myself terrific at being effective, rather than efficient. The irony was that more I practiced Habits 1, 2, and 3 the more I realized the priorities were those of the corporate team — they were not my true values. How did I know? I became depressed, behaved like a scorpion. Habit 7 saved my life. Sharpening my saw in every way I could, I discovered priorities that put me back into alignment with my Higher Self. (Lots of trouble with "mission statements" until I dumped the psychological baggage.) I turned away from Covey's books, choosing other thinkers and writers to become who I wanted to be. Returning now, I see the habits anew from the standpoint of my present inventory of committments. Kazam! Life is good. Thanks, first employer, for sending me on a journey that eventually let me cut myself free! "She really went her own way," they say at my funeral (my mother sniffing because "she gave up a perfectly good career.") Somewhere Joseph Campbell nods sagely and says, "Yes, she took the left-hand path."

  • Chris2110 says:

    My first employer sent me to 7 Habits workshops. From the start I was proactive, emphasized the important-but-not urgent, considered myself terrific at being effective, rather than efficient. The irony was that more I practiced Habits 1, 2, and 3 the more I realized the priorities were those of the corporate team — they were not my true values. How did I know? I became depressed, behaved like a scorpion. Habit 7 saved my life. Sharpening my saw in every way I could, I discovered priorities that put me back into alignment with my Higher Self. (Lots of trouble with "mission statements" until I dumped the psychological baggage.) I turned away from Covey's books, choosing other thinkers and writers to become who I wanted to be. Returning now, I see the habits anew from the standpoint of my present inventory of committments. Kazam! Life is good. Thanks, first employer, for sending me on a journey that eventually let me cut myself free! "She really went her own way," they say at my funeral (my mother sniffing because "she gave up a perfectly good career.") Somewhere Joseph Campbell nods sagely and says, "Yes, she took the left-hand path."

  • Chris2110 says:

    My first employer sent me to 7 Habits workshops. From the start I was proactive, emphasized the important-but-not urgent, considered myself terrific at being effective, rather than efficient. The irony was that more I practiced Habits 1, 2, and 3 the more I realized the priorities were those of the corporate team — they were not my true values. How did I know? I became depressed, behaved like a scorpion. Habit 7 saved my life. Sharpening my saw in every way I could, I discovered priorities that put me back into alignment with my Higher Self. (Lots of trouble with “mission statements” until I dumped the psychological baggage.) I turned away from Covey's books, choosing other thinkers and writers to become who I wanted to be. Returning now, I see the habits anew from the standpoint of my present inventory of committments. Kazam! Life is good. Thanks, first employer, for sending me on a journey that eventually let me cut myself free! “She really went her own way,” they say at my funeral (my mother sniffing because “she gave up a perfectly good career.”) Somewhere Joseph Campbell nods sagely and says, “Yes, she took the left-hand path.”

    • John M Cowart says:

      Beatific post Chris. We often see backwards what we can never see forwards. God is there. We just seldom go with his plan due to our own impatience.

  • Chris2110 says:

    My first employer sent me to 7 Habits workshops. From the start I was proactive, emphasized the important-but-not urgent, considered myself terrific at being effective, rather than efficient. The irony was that more I practiced Habits 1, 2, and 3 the more I realized the priorities were those of the corporate team — they were not my true values. How did I know? I became depressed, behaved like a scorpion. Habit 7 saved my life. Sharpening my saw in every way I could, I discovered priorities that put me back into alignment with my Higher Self. (Lots of trouble with "mission statements" until I dumped the psychological baggage.) I turned away from Covey's books, choosing other thinkers and writers to become who I wanted to be. Returning now, I see the habits anew from the standpoint of my present inventory of committments. Kazam! Life is good. Thanks, first employer, for sending me on a journey that eventually let me cut myself free! "She really went her own way," they say at my funeral (my mother sniffing because "she gave up a perfectly good career.") Somewhere Joseph Campbell nods sagely and says, "Yes, she took the left-hand path."

  • Chris2110 says:

    My first employer sent me to 7 Habits workshops. From the start I was proactive, emphasized the important-but-not urgent, considered myself terrific at being effective, rather than efficient. The irony was that more I practiced Habits 1, 2, and 3 the more I realized the priorities were those of the corporate team — they were not my true values. How did I know? I became depressed, behaved like a scorpion. Habit 7 saved my life. Sharpening my saw in every way I could, I discovered priorities that put me back into alignment with my Higher Self. (Lots of trouble with “mission statements” until I dumped the psychological baggage.) I turned away from Covey's books, choosing other thinkers and writers to become who I wanted to be. Returning now, I see the habits anew from the standpoint of my present inventory of committments. Kazam! Life is good. Thanks, first employer, for sending me on a journey that eventually let me cut myself free! “She really went her own way,” they say at my funeral (my mother sniffing because “she gave up a perfectly good career.”) Somewhere Joseph Campbell nods sagely and says, “Yes, she took the left-hand path.”

  • JKatzer says:

    I loved the reminder about Win/Win — we are so 'domesticated' into thinking that if one person wins to balance some virtual scale somewhere – someone has to lose!
    Love all the comments – really deepens and enriches this experience.

    Rock On 50-day Participants! (I think we need T-shirts!)

  • JKatzer says:

    I loved the reminder about Win/Win — we are so 'domesticated' into thinking that if one person wins to balance some virtual scale somewhere – someone has to lose!
    Love all the comments – really deepens and enriches this experience.

    Rock On 50-day Participants! (I think we need T-shirts!)

  • devacoach says:

    "Let’s begin with the end in mind and live with integrity to our ideals as we transform our lives." – LOVE this quote and am going to take it on in a whole new way. Much more energizing than thinking about what I have to do today.

  • devacoach says:

    “Let’s begin with the end in mind and live with integrity to our ideals as we transform our lives.” – LOVE this quote and am going to take it on in a whole new way. Much more energizing than thinking about what I have to do today.

  • pdplanet says:

    Boom! I read this book maybe 5 years ago, and (inexplicably) hated it. Now, in just 20 minutes, I've been utterly convinced of its wisdom.

    Takeaways are many and varied but KEY learnings pour moi:

    1) I'm NOT a pavlovian dog (ha!)

    2) Quadrant 2 is the way forward. I spend far too much time f*cking around with email, etc, in Quadrant 3. I'm gonna kick that habit on the head, fo' sho…

    3) I spend far too much time getting MY perspective across. It's time to find out what others want first. This will require a big shift in overcoming ego.

    4) Synergy is the way forward. Very similar to Mastermind principle in Think and Grow Rich. Consider this my no.1 focus. Get others who are on the same path, and partner with them (any volunteers?!!!) ;-)

    Boom. Sorry, more than expected. Share the love peeps. I'm off to Vegas for a week and not sure about internet access, so may be away for a week. Catch you after!

  • pdplanet says:

    Boom! I read this book maybe 5 years ago, and (inexplicably) hated it. Now, in just 20 minutes, I've been utterly convinced of its wisdom.

    Takeaways are many and varied but KEY learnings pour moi:

    1) I'm NOT a pavlovian dog (ha!)

    2) Quadrant 2 is the way forward. I spend far too much time f*cking around with email, etc, in Quadrant 3. I'm gonna kick that habit on the head, fo' sho…

    3) I spend far too much time getting MY perspective across. It's time to find out what others want first. This will require a big shift in overcoming ego.

    4) Synergy is the way forward. Very similar to Mastermind principle in Think and Grow Rich. Consider this my no.1 focus. Get others who are on the same path, and partner with them (any volunteers?!!!) ;-)

    Boom. Sorry, more than expected. Share the love peeps. I'm off to Vegas for a week and not sure about internet access, so may be away for a week. Catch you after!

  • pdplanet says:

    Boom! I read this book maybe 5 years ago, and (inexplicably) hated it. Now, in just 20 minutes, I've been utterly convinced of its wisdom.

    Takeaways are many and varied but KEY learnings pour moi:

    1) I'm NOT a pavlovian dog (ha!)

    2) Quadrant 2 is the way forward. I spend far too much time f*cking around with email, etc, in Quadrant 3. I'm gonna kick that habit on the head, fo' sho…

    3) I spend far too much time getting MY perspective across. It's time to find out what others want first. This will require a big shift in overcoming ego.

    4) Synergy is the way forward. Very similar to Mastermind principle in Think and Grow Rich. Consider this my no.1 focus. Get others who are on the same path, and partner with them (any volunteers?!!!) ;-)

    Boom. Sorry, more than expected. Share the love peeps. I'm off to Vegas for a week and not sure about internet access, so may be away for a week. Catch you after!

  • Slengas says:

    I remember the first time I read this great book the biggest AHA! was the habit "seek first to understand, then to be understood." I have been working on that, but still have problems with that from time to time.

    Now I truly want to focus more on working on my priorities and spend more time in quadrant II so that I could have less things to do in quadrant I. Sharpen the saw is another great one, and that is a reason why I join this challenge. To sharpen! :)

  • Slengas says:

    I remember the first time I read this great book the biggest AHA! was the habit “seek first to understand, then to be understood.” I have been working on that, but still have problems with that from time to time.

    Now I truly want to focus more on working on my priorities and spend more time in quadrant II so that I could have less things to do in quadrant I. Sharpen the saw is another great one, and that is a reason why I join this challenge. To sharpen! :)

  • Jayne says:

    I read this book when it was first published and have read it many times since. As a result, the 7 habits have become just that….habits! Having read Brain's notes though, I've realised that I need to focus on integrity to my commitments. I often take on too much and end up not being able to fulfil my commitments (usually social). It's interesting that this theme has jumped out at me in both the Four Agreements and 7 Habits so I know it;s something I must take action on to change!

  • Judie68 says:

    Ugh I feel really stuck in the mud with this one. I can so relate to the statment "We are much better at planning a project at a job we hate than planning a life to create a job we love." With all that has gone on with the economy today…being one of the many who lost their job and was out of work for over a year. I feel the weight of this note and still struggle with putting pen to paper on "What is my specific mission in Life?" That is really hard to focus on when basic needs (rent, food, bills..) can't be met…yet I see it is just being a Pavlovian dog.

    • Omni100 says:

      Judie, you might like to read a book, then, by Janet Attwood and Chris Attwood called "The Passion Test". It will solve your problem for you. I promise. :-)

    • BrianJohnson says:

      i hear ya, judie. it's definitely way more challenging to imagine the ideal future when so much of our security has collapsed.

      my personal strategy when everything hits the fan is to get really clear on the behaviors I have that really help me feel strong/healthy/resilient–things like eating well, exercising (that's HUGE for me–you literally couldn't pay me to quit exercising as I KNOW I'd be a mess within a very short time :), and, for me, now, meditating.

      i also like to get clear on what I need to STOP doing–like wasting time online, eating certain foods, staying in bed, etc.

      you might want to explore:

      what's the number 1 thing you could start doing, that if you did it consistently, would have THE most positive benefit in your life?!?

      and, what's the #1 thing that if you stopped doing it would have the most positive benefit in your life!

      sending lots of love and energy,

      -bri

  • Judie68 says:

    Ugh I feel really stuck in the mud with this one. I can so relate to the statment “We are much better at planning a project at a job we hate than planning a life to create a job we love.” With all that has gone on with the economy today…being one of the many who lost their job and was out of work for over a year. I feel the weight of this note and still struggle with putting pen to paper on “What is my specific mission in Life?” That is really hard to focus on when basic needs (rent, food, bills..) can't be met…yet I see it is just being a Pavlovian dog.

  • Satvinder says:

    Thank you so much for the vid. Loved it. I have read 7 Habits, was probably one of the first self dev books I'd read. So good to have a resume to remind me of the main points. I sometimes forget to sharpen the saw, great to start a new year with all this energy, gratitude, reminders to reevaluate to go forward. With that in mind yoga practice has moved up the to do list!!

  • Lokman says:

    That quadrant method is going to make life more simple to direct. But I must keep in mind…… Repetition makes the master!

  • eimpett says:

    Ah yes! The funeral exercise! I remember doing that with you YEARS ago when you were living in La Jolla! I think I'll have to do it again today :)

  • BrianJohnson says:

    hey kay:

    i know, huh?! i think it's really important for you to honor your own rhythms and sense of what tempo feels best for you. altho we're going to go thru these 50 books in 50 days, there's nothing that says you can't let em simmer and go thru them in 500 days if that feels best!

    HUGE themes of my work/these books are the ideas of trusting ourselves + learning to approach growth with a sense of diligence, patience, persistence and playfulness. so, again, I say: follow your heart and have fun! if you jump in for the 50 in 50, laugh and realize it'll be a super quick immersion that'll allow you to circle back after if you like and if decide to take your time and focus on implementing rather than total immersion (or do something entirely diff), that's awesome !!!

    big hugs and high fives and lemme know if that resonates!

    -bri

  • BrianJohnson says:

    love that, robrave!!!

    reminds me of that picture covey shows–of the old woman and the young woman!

  • Katherinethegrt says:

    Covey's "Begin with the end in mind" principle is really revolutionary. I often think about it when I get stressed out. And I find it really helps to center me and remind me what is important. There's something very elegant in its pureness.

  • Katherinethegrt says:

    Covey's “Begin with the end in mind” principle is really revolutionary. I often think about it when I get stressed out. And I find it really helps to center me and remind me what is important. There's something very elegant in its pureness.

  • sandrahansen says:

    this is going to be the greatest journey ever!!!
    My head is so full of all the new impressions,but still I somehow feel clear,and my mind is bright :O)
    I am actually using some of the ideas from day # 1 and #2 already.

  • MarkHoover says:

    Day 2Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

    It’s not that my life has been aimless; I have accomplished many things. All of those things, however, were short-term. I lacked a GOAL and the roles I played out were not collaboratively conducive to a proper end. I spent lots of time in Quadrant II, but the crunch times in Quadrants I, III, and IV made it a rather futile exercise. All the short-term projects gave me little time to look within and manifest my ultimate goal. I spent time on knee-jerk, Pavlovian responses rather than planned answers. My commitments were many, my “no’s” were few.

    By reducing my commitments to those few that serve us all well, I am now able to properly prioritize my activities and reap the greatest rewards from a clean and precise synergy of talents. Follow-through is of utmost importance because each person is important. I want to see all of them at the end with a smile on their faces. This can result from building fewer and better bridges so none have to be burnt and laid by the wayside.

  • MarkHoover says:

    Day 2 Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

    It’s not that my life has been aimless; I have accomplished many things. All of those things, however, were short-term. I lacked a GOAL and the roles I played out were not collaboratively conducive to a proper end. I spent lots of time in Quadrant II, but the crunch times in Quadrants I, III, and IV made it a rather futile exercise. All the short-term projects gave me little time to look within and manifest my ultimate goal. I spent time on knee-jerk, Pavlovian responses rather than planned answers. My commitments were many, my “no’s” were few.

    By reducing my commitments to those few that serve us all well, I am now able to properly prioritize my activities and reap the greatest rewards from a clean and precise synergy of talents. Follow-through is of utmost importance because each person is important. I want to see all of them at the end with a smile on their faces. This can result from building fewer and better bridges so none have to be burnt and laid by the wayside.

  • MarkHoover says:

    Hey! What's the word/character limit here. I need to know so I can shut up! =)

    It all lies in understanding the self and knowing others, not anticipating them. That way the goal is clear and the means to attain it are not obfuscated by murky means. Only by slowing down can I speed ahead. It is much better, in sailing, to tack and reach the distant point surely than to charge ahead uncharted and risk being capsized by unplanned storms.

    I love this stuff!

  • MarkHoover says:

    Hey! What's the word/character limit here. I need to know so I can shut up! =)

    (cont.) It all lies in understanding the self and knowing others, not anticipating them. That way the goal is clear and the means to attain it are not obfuscated by murky means. Only by slowing down can I speed ahead. It is much better, in sailing, to tack and reach the distant point surely than to charge ahead uncharted and risk being capsized by unplanned storms.

    I love this stuff!

  • Chris2110 says:

    Brian will have recommendations, but I'm throwing in my impression. Keep going anyway. One clear statement on moving on to new concepts before the old have been digested comes from “The Path of Least Resistance” (also in the Notes, though I haven't checked yet to see what Brian has included.) The author was originally a musician. While studyiing, he complained that he couldn't move to the next lesson because he had not yet mastered last week's. His master teacher told him itmove on and not cling to the old. After six weeks or so, the student was surprised to discover he had somehow mastered the early lessons while working on the new. Learning was mysteriously cumulative. I found this true when studying Ancient Greek. I felt I wasn't keeping up (in spite of always doing my best) but found that by the end of the month that I had somehow learned those lessons that left me feeling uncertain.

    This principle is very true in working with the types of books Brian has included in the Notes. Keep going, and by Day 50 you'll be amazed by the principles that will have shaped themselves in your mind.

    • Chris2110 says:

      Adding a note to remind myself as well. One of the secrets to learning is to RELAX, both physically and mentally, rather than tense up and trying to bear down.

      The 3-2-1 Relaxation method of the Silva training systems are excellent at achieving the type of relaxation that doesn't send you to sleep but really wakes up the brain and consciousness.

      Or, any other relaxation method that induces alertness will work as well. One recommendation from PhotoReading is to visualize a tangerine just above your head as you're listening or reading. No room here to describe the reasons why this works, but it does. For one thing, the color orange is the strongest in catching and holding the brain's attention.

  • elizabeth says:

    Responsibility. The ability to choose your own response. I love this and am implementing this immediately. :)

  • Kent Bye says:

    Private victory before Public victory.

    1. Be Proactive
    Behavior from conscious choice, not reactive victim of conditions (manifested in commitments).

    2. Begin with the End in Mind
    All things are created twice. Strategic visualization + Doing. Your eulogy is a map for your future.

    3. Put First Things First
    Time management
    Quadrant 1: Firefighting leads to stress
    Q2: Preventative planning on important things before they become urgent fires
    Q3: Important to others, but not us / False sense of urgency / Interruptions
    Q4: Time-wasting distractions (sometimes guilty pleasures recharge your batteries)

    Everyone "no" has a "yes" component

    4. Think Win/Win
    Look for collaborative symbiosis rather than dichotomous victories

    5. Seek First to Understand
    Listen to other's POV before being heard.

    6. Synergy
    There's more resilience in cooperation.

    7. Sharpen the Saw
    Review & practice each of the 6 previous steps. Feed your soul w/ meditation, journaling, loving, playing, dancing & hobbies

  • Kent Bye says:

    Private victory before Public victory.

    1. Be Proactive
    Behavior from conscious choice, not reactive victim of conditions (manifested in commitments).

    2. Begin with the End in Mind
    All things are created twice. Strategic visualization + Doing. Your eulogy is a map for your future.

    3. Put First Things First
    Time management
    Quadrant 1: Firefighting leads to stress
    Q2: Preventative planning on important things before they become urgent fires
    Q3: Important to others, but not us / False sense of urgency / Interruptions
    Q4: Time-wasting distractions (sometimes guilty pleasures recharge your batteries)

    Everyone “no” has a “yes” component

    4. Think Win/Win
    Look for collaborative symbiosis rather than dichotomous victories

    5. Seek First to Understand
    Listen to other's POV before being heard.

    6. Synergy
    There's more resilience in cooperation.

    7. Sharpen the Saw
    Review & practice each of the 6 previous steps. Feed your soul w/ meditation, journaling, loving, playing, dancing & hobbies

  • BrianJohnson says:

    right on, moonwillow!

    to arete, indeed! (big smile! :)

    -bri

  • BrianJohnson says:

    hehehe. check out the pdf for a nice drawing of it, cindy! :)

    big smiles!

    -bri

  • jackonline says:

    "If we want all the joys of outward success, first we must master ourselves."
    "Be proactive and less reactive". "Getting really clear on what we want". (I love these wise thoughts, I always enjoy reading them again and again)

    I realize that I have always honored my committments I made to others, but not those I made to myself. My key learning is to honor my own commitments as well.
    Another key learning is to create our goals for each role.

    Thanks to all.

  • jackonline says:

    “If we want all the joys of outward success, first we must master ourselves.”
    “Be proactive and less reactive”. “Getting really clear on what we want”. (I love these wise thoughts, I always enjoy reading them again and again)

    I realize that I have always honored my committments I made to others, but not those I made to myself. My key learning is to honor my own commitments as well.
    Another key learning is to create our goals for each role.

    Thanks to all.

  • Yetty says:

    Thanks Brian for putting these together. PN really captures the essence of the book. I like to go with habit #3. Put first things first. This definitely will lead to priotizing my activities. This noteis giving me another opportunity to take inventory of where I currently spend most of my time. With this challenge, I have resolved to be deeply committed to my priorities and focus more on quadrant ll. I will also like to practice habit #4 and #5 in my daily experiences. I believe this will make life more interesting for me and people around me. I like the quote by Benjamin Franklin and indeed I am certain that if I put to practice all the7 habits and other wisdom tips in PN then I won't squander the little time I have.

  • sandrahansen says:

    this is going to be the greatest journey ever!!!
    My head is so full of all the new impressions,but still I somehow feel clear,and my mind is bright :O)
    I am actually using some of the ideas from day # 1 and #2 already.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      hehe. love it, sandra!

    • katrinaT says:

      I know, isn't it great? I'm so impressed that this is only the 2nd day and already I am changing. I've read some of these books over the years but I feel more ready to implement these practices now. In a grounded way. As Brian mentions, backslides happen but I feel so capable now to deal with practical application and backsliding in a more balanced way. Just fabulous!

  • Chris Cade says:

    This comment / insight from Brian really brought it all together for me:

    "The enemy of the 'best' is often the 'good.'" – Brian Johnson

    And challenged me to consider how many things I do that I'm -good- at, but perhaps aren't enabling me to really live my best. And he reminds me that there's a lot of "Nos" (ironically to opportunity) waiting in my email inbox.

  • Chris Cade says:

    This comment / insight from Brian really brought it all together for me:

    “The enemy of the 'best' is often the 'good.'” – Brian Johnson

    And challenged me to consider how many things I do that I'm -good- at, but perhaps aren't enabling me to really live my best. And he reminds me that there's a lot of “Nos” (ironically to opportunity) waiting in my email inbox.

  • claudiobasso says:

    I am not a Jeddi but I do have friends that come from a very dark side, a very very dark side, I mean a very very very dark side :>)
    p.s. = I suggest you forward your question to Brian as unfortunately I can't answer you. Positivity flying to you right now :>)
    Claudio

  • ciddurban says:

    Great book to review: Rather than clog the comments section with a book click to read
    http://planetbi-polar.blogspot.com/

  • ciddurban says:

    Great book to review: Rather than clog the comments section with a book click to read
    http://planetbi-polar.blogspot.com/

  • threethrees says:

    Day 2 and off and running…My goal here is to always look for and find the ties that bind each days notes to the previous…finding continuity is what allows our brains to keep a synergistic flow of what it might otherwise choose to look at as seperate ideas. Being impeccable, not taking things personally, not making assumptions, and doing our best seemt o easily flow into todays notes. Yesterday was about becoming centered in ourselves and learning to live with integrity from within while today focused on ways to hone and clarify those points.
    Choosing to be proactive detaches us from a victim standpoint and is a way that we can do our best in each moment, while keeping our commitments enables us to be impeccable with our (mostly inner) words.
    When we begin with the end in mind, we are actually keeping our goals clear and firmly focused upon. By saying that things are created twice, we are clarifying the viewpoint that first things must come to fruition in our internal thinking before we can truly manifest them into our physical realities.

  • threethrees says:

    Day 2 and off and running…My goal here is to always look for and find the ties that bind each days notes to the previous…finding continuity is what allows our brains to keep a synergistic flow of what it might otherwise choose to look at as seperate ideas. Being impeccable, not taking things personally, not making assumptions, and doing our best seemt o easily flow into todays notes. Yesterday was about becoming centered in ourselves and learning to live with integrity from within while today focused on ways to hone and clarify those points.
    Choosing to be proactive detaches us from a victim standpoint and is a way that we can do our best in each moment, while keeping our commitments enables us to be impeccable with our (mostly inner) words.
    When we begin with the end in mind, we are actually keeping our goals clear and firmly focused upon. By saying that things are created twice, we are clarifying the viewpoint that first things must come to fruition in our internal thinking before we can truly manifest them into our physical realities.

  • threethrees says:

    Habit #3, putting first things first, makes us aware that if we fill up our lives with all the small things then we will have no room for the big things that really matter. In a loose way, this also relates back to not making assumptions. If we are, on a regular basis, prioritzing the things we need to do in our lives, then we are no longer making the assumption that all things will take care of themselves and that we always have enough time to put it off until later. We are all born with a finite amount of time in this existence, althopugh we don't know just how limited it is, and all to often people tend to think that they will have time "later" to do whats important. That's why I like the 4 quadrant chart; it shows how some things seem important at the time because they are urgent, but that we actually push off the things we need to focus on the most because we confuse urgent with important.

  • threethrees says:

    Habit #3, putting first things first, makes us aware that if we fill up our lives with all the small things then we will have no room for the big things that really matter. In a loose way, this also relates back to not making assumptions. If we are, on a regular basis, prioritzing the things we need to do in our lives, then we are no longer making the assumption that all things will take care of themselves and that we always have enough time to put it off until later. We are all born with a finite amount of time in this existence, althopugh we don't know just how limited it is, and all to often people tend to think that they will have time “later” to do whats important. That's why I like the 4 quadrant chart; it shows how some things seem important at the time because they are urgent, but that we actually push off the things we need to focus on the most because we confuse urgent with important.

  • threethrees says:

    Thinking in a win/win situation in all of our endeavors also allows us to do our best in every moment and be impeccable with our words/thoughts. By choosing to do our best and making sure our thoughts and words follow, we actually are creating an environment where the win/win situation acan flourish. If we are not taking everything personally then there is no reason for us not to always look for the win/win in all realtionships and circumstances.
    Trying to understand first before being understood gives us the opportunity to be impeccable with our words and to not make assumptions. If we are thinking about how we need to make the other person understand our perspective, we are assuming that they can't or won't understand us, and in turn, that is usually coming from a stance of critical thinking. Habit #5 embodies all of yesterdays agreements, as first seeeking ways to understand the other pretty much guarantees that we are choosing not to take things personally because we have suspended our personal gains/losses in favor of chossing to understand how we are part of the same underlying force.

  • threethrees says:

    Thinking in a win/win situation in all of our endeavors also allows us to do our best in every moment and be impeccable with our words/thoughts. By choosing to do our best and making sure our thoughts and words follow, we actually are creating an environment where the win/win situation acan flourish. If we are not taking everything personally then there is no reason for us not to always look for the win/win in all realtionships and circumstances.
    Trying to understand first before being understood gives us the opportunity to be impeccable with our words and to not make assumptions. If we are thinking about how we need to make the other person understand our perspective, we are assuming that they can't or won't understand us, and in turn, that is usually coming from a stance of critical thinking. Habit #5 embodies all of yesterdays agreements, as first seeeking ways to understand the other pretty much guarantees that we are choosing not to take things personally because we have suspended our personal gains/losses in favor of chossing to understand how we are part of the same underlying force.

  • threethrees says:

    And that perfectly ties us into habit #6…Synergy. To me, this really is teh understanding that all things are energy, and that energy cannot be created or destroyed, and therefore we all must be part of the same universal whole. By realizing this and acting as if its true, we create situations on which our own energy can be amplified into somethoing which is greater than the sum of its parts.
    Sharpening the saw reminds that we all need to take time off from our endeavors to look back, relax and re-evaluate, and I think that it embodies all of the agreements from yesterday. By staying energized, we give ourselves the awareness to be impeccable with our word, the ease of being to not take things personally, the perspective to not make assumptions, and the much needed energy to always do our best.
    My oh my am I ever long winded :P…lol….but yes I tend to think alot and I want to make sure that I utilize all the resources available to me from the PN 50 day challenge.

  • threethrees says:

    And that perfectly ties us into habit #6…Synergy. To me, this really is teh understanding that all things are energy, and that energy cannot be created or destroyed, and therefore we all must be part of the same universal whole. By realizing this and acting as if its true, we create situations on which our own energy can be amplified into somethoing which is greater than the sum of its parts.
    Sharpening the saw reminds that we all need to take time off from our endeavors to look back, relax and re-evaluate, and I think that it embodies all of the agreements from yesterday. By staying energized, we give ourselves the awareness to be impeccable with our word, the ease of being to not take things personally, the perspective to not make assumptions, and the much needed energy to always do our best.
    My oh my am I ever long winded :P…lol….but yes I tend to think alot and I want to make sure that I utilize all the resources available to me from the PN 50 day challenge.

  • threethrees says:

    So quickly int the beginning and I too am thrilled and excited and loving it so far and the best part is the community. I love reading everyone elses take and ideas and comments and its nice to have a place to put my (long …long…VERY long:P) comments as well. Once again Thanks to Brian and Vishen, but also Thanks to everyone taking part and being active in this challenge.
    Anyone know how I could post in a single comment instead of multiple?

  • threethrees says:

    So quickly int the beginning and I too am thrilled and excited and loving it so far and the best part is the community. I love reading everyone elses take and ideas and comments and its nice to have a place to put my (long …long…VERY long:P) comments as well. Once again Thanks to Brian and Vishen, but also Thanks to everyone taking part and being active in this challenge.
    Anyone know how I could post in a single comment instead of multiple?

  • tm2889 says:

    Habits are definitely a powerful force in life because the majority of our lives is controlled by them. By instilling some good foundational habits I think the effects of each will be synergistic like in the example of 1+1=3.
    I feel that sometimes there is so much information, aka information overload, that I get stuck in a state of paralysis. I find that a habit of mine that I need to focus more on is continually reading more and more self development material that is excellent but rather than internalize the concepts I just move onto the next book, course, or video. It's a lot easier to read about something and think well that's a good concept but its another to actually internalize and apply what you are discovering.
    I think its more important to do what you can one bit at a time rather than trying to apply every concept at once and therefore burning out or giving up.
    I need to remind myself to follow my own intuition and inner guidance set up rituals and habits in my daily life that will propel me towards never ending success, joy abundance, and evolution. :)

  • tm2889 says:

    Habits are definitely a powerful force in life because the majority of our lives are controlled by them. By instilling some good foundational habits I think the effects of each will be synergistic like in the example of 1 1=3.
    I feel that sometimes there is so much information, aka information overload, that I get stuck in a state of paralysis. I find that a habit of mine that I need to focus more on is continually reading more and more self development material that is excellent but rather than internalize the concepts I just move onto the next book, course, or video. It's a lot easier to read about something and think well that's a good concept but its another to actually internalize and apply what you are discovering.
    I think its more important to do what you can one bit at a time rather than trying to apply every concept at once and therefore burning out or giving up.
    I need to remind myself to follow my own intuition and inner guidance set up rituals and habits in my daily life that will propel me towards never ending success, joy abundance, and evolution. :)
    Also I need to remind myself to relax, loosen up, and have fun because life is a game and there is no right way to play it.

  • @jaikara says:

    awesome is a good place to start, with the end in mind, also awesome……
    i realized so much as a direct result of this note that i am having kriyas of all manner and divine(d?) design….. wow wow wow. it's like the nike swoosh but with illustrations. just figured out that even though i am a music guy, my visual intake skills are sharper than listening skills….WOAH! like every fkn second huge love boulders are dropping on my crown chakra!!! woohoo this is awesome.
    i can not wait to read this book.
    i figured out that the human i have the awesomest human love type feelings for has probably read this. maybe she wrote it lol….she DEF lives it and has been employing these techniques in a very beautiful and effective 21st century life/career/etc… and when communication connex went dark between us, well, i would love to blame it on Mercury Retrofakeout but c'mon of COURSE i am response><ABLE and, you know what?
    i am very clear at this perfect moment.

    i did my first
    'COMMITVENTORY'
    it started out w/ clear fiscal goals (short term for the next year) and quickly morphed into a whole other beautifully integral thing. then when encouraged to do the 'mission statement' i had an autowriting moment that i haven't read yet but am VERY excited about.
    i have renewed trust, faith, understanding, respect and gratitude for the {god/light/truth/angel/nrg/music/YES} that dwells within you within me you everynothing…….

    YAY. big fkn YAY.

  • @jaikara says:

    awesome is a good place to start, with the end in mind, also awesome……
    i realized so much as a direct result of this note that i am having kriyas of all manner and divine(d?) design….. wow wow wow. it's like the nike swoosh but with illustrations. just figured out that even though i am a music guy, my visual intake skills are sharper than listening skills….WOAH! like every fkn second huge love boulders are dropping on my crown chakra!!! woohoo this is awesome.
    i can not wait to read this book.
    i figured out that the human i have the awesomest human love type feelings for has probably read this. maybe she wrote it lol….she DEF lives it and has been employing these techniques in a very beautiful and effective 21st century life/career/etc… and when communication connex went dark between us, well, i would love to blame it on Mercury Retrofakeout but c'mon of COURSE i am response>

  • Diannak says:

    Much Intelligent regret on assuming this book was only for the ambitious business person!

    Have now added this book to my ever expanding library……..but it will have to wait til this challenge is over as Stephen says, First Things First, and I am very much enjoying both the PNs and everyones comments!

  • LisaPaul says:

    Day 2 and my time management has already changed!

  • InnerLimits says:

    I have a bunch of audios by Covey of this stuff and they are the reference point I always go back to. Interesting in philosophical discussions how often the themes can be seen using other language. For example much eastern teaching relates to being in the present moment and listening fully to someone before responding, this is process that delivers seek to understand. Having read and listened to loads of this stuff the 7 habits is the most effective conceptual packaging I have come across. There were some nice messages in yesterdays note but in building out a mind map for this challenge the 7 habits gives 5 really strong level one messages. Understand where you are headed, take responsibility for getting their, ensure those you interact with are able to go with you and you with them, do the right things and keep improving so you can do them everything better. Agreement 4 is sharpen the saw and agreements 1-3 are differing views of know thy self which underpins all of the above. Going to be an interesting mind map by the end. Follow the yellow brick road…

    • BrianJohnson says:

      love it and Amen to this: "Interesting in philosophical discussions how often the themes can be seen using other language." everyone is saying very similar things in different ways/from diff cultural perspectives. excited to see that emerge more and more over the 50 days!

      thx for sharing!

  • InnerLimits says:

    I have a bunch of audios by Covey of this stuff and they are the reference point I always go back to. Interesting in philosophical discussions how often the themes can be seen using other language. For example much eastern teaching relates to being in the present moment and listening fully to someone before responding, this is a process that delivers seek to understand. Having read and listened to loads of this stuff the 7 habits is the most effective conceptual packaging I have come across. There were some nice messages in yesterdays note but in mind mapping the first 2 for this challenge the 7 habits gives 5 really strong level one messages. Understand where you are headed, take responsibility for getting their, ensure those you interact with are able to go with you and you with them (a nice thought that links habits 4-6 is; love is the natural inbetween), do the right things and keep improving so you can do them everything better. Agreement 4 (arete) connects sharpen the saw and be proactive and agreements 2-3 are differing views of know thy self which underpins all of the above. Going to be an interesting mind map by the end. Follow the yellow brick road…

    • BrianJohnson says:

      love it and Amen to this: “Interesting in philosophical discussions how often the themes can be seen using other language.” everyone is saying very similar things in different ways/from diff cultural perspectives. excited to see that emerge more and more over the 50 days!

      thx for sharing!

  • John says:

    What a great idea!! Read and listen. I found the whole idea very invigorating and a great compass for my day's purpose. The time quadrant was an old forgotten idea that has tremendous merit in sifting the piles of input and bits of data that are constantly being fired at us through all the media forums. Being conscious of categorizing each event by that simple method will add years to your life by eliminating stress and could very possibly cure dandruff =)

  • JDBear52 says:

    My biggest take away from this note would have to be Habit #2: Begin with the end in mind. Sometimes I loose sight of the end and give up before I've had the full opportunity to reach my goal. I need to stick to the process while invisioning the end. It can be a daunting task, but a rewarding one.

  • StephanieE says:

    So many thoughtful comments, I am really not sure that I have much to add…read this *many* years ago, and used the Franklin Covey planners for many years, then PDA, now smart phone, so I got out of some of the habits that were so well-supported when using the planner…I really liked looking weekly at my roles and goals…I will find a way to add that back to my daily/weekly habits to make sure that I am focusing on how I wish to improve myself in the different areas of my life. In regards to a previous comment, there are some corporations in America, albeit not enough, who are using some of these habits in their mission statements and training. Finally, I realized while listening to the mp3 that I sharpen my saw all the time, now. When I first read this book, I was not in the habit of doing so – I said "yes" to too many things. I am very grateful for all the time I carve out now to do things for me, mentally, spiritually, and physically…including this 50-day challenge! Thank you Brian, and all!

  • StephanieE says:

    So many thoughtful comments, I am really not sure that I have much to add…read this *many* years ago, and used the Franklin Covey planners for many years, then PDA, now smart phone, so I got out of some of the habits that were so well-supported when using the planner…I really liked looking weekly at my roles and goals…I will find a way to add that back to my daily/weekly habits to make sure that I am focusing on how I wish to improve myself in the different areas of my life. In regards to a previous comment, there are some corporations in America, albeit not enough, who are using some of these habits in their mission statements and training. Finally, I realized while listening to the mp3 that I sharpen my saw all the time, now. When I first read this book, I was not in the habit of doing so – I said “yes” to too many things. I am very grateful for all the time I carve out now to do things for me, mentally, spiritually, and physically…including this 50-day challenge! Thank you Brian, and all!

  • Meirav says:

    I understand the ideas but actually implementing them is a totally different story. I know I miss a lot of synergy in my life. Having no synergy with my spouse or my kids or anyone else, I end up having to do everything by myself including work, taking care of the kids, all house chores and some internet business -while trying to take time for meditation, exercise, etc. -I think I end up doing a little bit of everything but definitely not seeing results. If I had some synergetical help, probably I would be more effective. I probably have to start visualizing my husband doing the dishes…. :-) I think there should be a version of this book for working moms…..

  • AMPowers says:

    Wow Brian. I can't believe it's only day two!!!
    There is so much to take fomr the notes alone. I can't wair to read the book. :)
    This is my take on the notes….You cannot be a success in life without developing your character. If you think so then your idea of success needs some tweeking. You can't help heal the world without healing yourself first. Follow your gut…it feels really good to truly live with integrity. Mindfullness practices help us become, and stay, present resulting in more awareness, clarity and less reactivity to our environmental stimuli.¸ I love the concept of all things being created twice, therefore thoughts are creations. We therefore havegreat control over our thoughts and the world we create. We are not mere puppets in a play. This gives us theoportunity to drop the victim or survivor mentality. I am a warrior!! I love the quote `the enemy of the best is often the good“ If we are conciously week then we can too easily succumb to the pressure of trying to be a `good` person. The idea of synergy struck a chord with me aswell. The more I anm aware te more and more I see lessons and laws in every part of life. All of life is one big living metaphor!

  • AMPowers says:

    Wow Brian. I can't believe it's only day two!!!
    There is so much to take fomr the notes alone. I can't wair to read the book. :)
    This is my take on the notes….You cannot be a success in life without developing your character. If you think so then your idea of success needs some tweeking. You can't help heal the world without healing yourself first. Follow your gut…it feels really good to truly live with integrity. Mindfullness practices help us become, and stay, present resulting in more awareness, clarity and less reactivity to our environmental stimuli.

  • rikkitikkitavi says:

    I still integrating yesterday's book(!) but the main point I got out of the 7 Habits was to say no when I need to. I tend to say yes to avoid trouble pretty regularly and I don't like myself when I do it. Knowing my highest principles is another action I really haven't taken yet. But one of my main issues is being response-able, being able to choose how I respond to a situation. Every day when I get in a car I find myself griping about how others drive, over and over again. This I vow to nip in the bud starting today!

  • Ljerka says:

    Now, I think I'll be returning to the 7 habits quite a lot this year. Since I am planning to retire some time in the autumn, I have to decide where a new path in my life should lead. I do mean that I intend to break with everything I have been doing for many a year, but a lot of things will definitely change.
    I have been a teacher for almost 35 years, I have been a mother of three for 30 years and a wife for a little longer. And I think that I have done a good job so far.
    But that's not the point. The point is how to go on. I do not have any intention of digging myself in at home wishing someone would come to see how I am dong and if i am doing at all. I must admit that many, many times I was stuck in Quadrant I, many many times I was a Pavlov's dog and many many times I felt I was pretty "domesticated" by the family or even by the principal. The time has come for me to fix my position in Quadrant II and stay there. (Even if, no one to fire me!).
    How? I think the Notes are the best place to start. So, here I am! I believe it is a good start.

  • Ljerka says:

    Now, I think I'll be returning to the 7 habits quite a lot this year. Since I am planning to retire some time in the autumn, I have to decide where a new path in my life should lead. I do mean that I intend to break with everything I have been doing for many a year, but a lot of things will definitely change.
    I have been a teacher for almost 35 years, I have been a mother of three for 30 years and a wife for a little longer. And I think that I have done a good job so far.
    But that's not the point. The point is how to go on. I do not have any intention of digging myself in at home wishing someone would come to see how I am dong and if i am doing at all. I must admit that many, many times I was stuck in Quadrant I, many many times I was a Pavlov's dog and many many times I felt I was pretty “domesticated” by the family or even by the principal. The time has come for me to fix my position in Quadrant II and stay there. (Even if, no one to fire me!).
    How? I think the Notes are the best place to start. So, here I am! I believe it is a good start.

  • Secretely says:

    Using a daytimer is an excellent tool for tracking progress. One easy method is to set up a 'Legend' , use a rate scale #1-5 or Yes/No or whatever resonates with you.
    Then on the end of each day, rate your progress easily – the easier it is the more likely you will continue.
    My Grid:
    I draw a sun /cloud/ and include temp.
    Family – was I good to my family today, did I do something extra special? (-5 to +5)
    Work – am I on target with my goals, did I 'do my best'? (-5 to +5)
    Physical – Was I 'on my game' Weak, Strong. Depressed, Happy, Moody and -1 to +5)
    Exercise – Yes/No
    This is what it looks like:
    Cloudy, rain -2 // F+1 // W-4 // P HHHH !!! +5 /// E – YES!! Walk with PN on MP3
    I keep my journals, and monthly add scores to see how I am doing, look at temp. cloudy days etc. to see how my mood was, and can now go back 3 years since I first started this, and do comparisons to see patterns, growth etc.

  • Secretely says:

    Using a daytimer is an excellent tool for tracking progress. One easy method is to set up a 'Legend' , use a rate scale #1-5 or Yes/No or whatever resonates with you.
    Then on the end of each day, rate your progress easily – the easier it is the more likely you will continue.
    My Grid:
    I draw a sun /cloud/ and include temp.
    Family – was I good to my family today, did I do something extra special? (-5 to +5)
    Work – am I on target with my goals, did I 'do my best'? (-5 to +5)
    Physical – Was I 'on my game' Weak, Strong. Depressed, Happy, Moody and -1 to +5)
    Exercise – Yes/No
    This is what it looks like:
    Cloudy, rain -2 // F+1 // W-4 // P HHHH !!! +5 /// E – YES!! Walk with PN on MP3
    I keep my journals, and monthly add scores to see how I am doing, look at temp. cloudy days etc. to see how my mood was, and can now go back 3 years since I first started this, and do comparisons to see patterns, growth etc.

  • I found literally all of the nuggets of wisdom to ring true – and I really enjoyed the complementary/corroborating quotes in the left margin of the page. All of the Habits are essential and I think Covey was humble in titling his book using the label of "effective people" which does not reflect the full spectrum of what he was communicating. Certainly the list of seven items was good, but as Covey states, and as Brian Johnson correctly gleaned from his work – is that integrity (assuming you're not a deranged psychopath) is a sufficient principle to encapsulate everything you need to lead an amazing life. It implies that you make the commitment to yourself and stay true to it, and by extension you are a heck of a person in the workplace and to other people in your life as well.

    As far as which Habits I found most relevant at this particular juncture in my life, I feel the prioritization concept and especially the Quadrants stood out. Although I actually do spend a good amount of time in Quadrant II, I could stand to make drastic reductions to my time spent in other boxes which I'm sure would improve my quality of life (not that I'm discontent in the slightest now – but it'd be a nice "bonus"). Like Brian, I too feel that I am constantly coming to terms with my Mission and taking steps to realize it. The difficulty I'm finding is – what do you do if you have more than one major talent or life-shaping opportunity? Do you try to hybridize them into some bizarre dual-career? Do you choose which one seems a little better than the other? Do you place weight on your past efforts and where your path has led thus far, or do you cut ties and forge a new path into the unknown completely discarding your previous efforts? My fear, that I'm increasingly coming to terms with and becoming aware of, is that forging into the unknown may in fact end up being the choice I must make, but it's such a wild departure from my current station that it would feel almost irresponsible and/or unfeasible to pursue immediately. So then, is the present a waste of time, or just a step along the path wherein I grow and become better prepared to make the 180-degree flip? Pardon all the rhetorical questions, and feel free to respond to them, but this is the conundrum I currently face and would very much like to proceed as a person of the highest integrity would.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      this is fantastic!

      obviously, those are exactly the questions we each need to answer for ourselves and there are no simple answers (and certainly none from anyone but ourselves!) but good news is we're going to explore them again and again and again throughout these 50 days! especially when we do the big leap in a few days!

      also: check out the joseph campbell companion for some specific mojo here! :)

  • cobracommander9 says:

    I found literally all of the nuggets of wisdom to ring true – and I really enjoyed the complementary/corroborating quotes in the left margin of the page. All of the Habits are essential and I think Covey was humble in titling his book using the label of "effective people" which does not reflect the full spectrum of what he was communicating. Certainly the list of seven items was good, but as Covey states, and as Brian Johnson correctly gleaned from his work – is that integrity (assuming you're not a deranged psychopath) is a sufficient principle to encapsulate everything you need to lead an amazing life. It implies that you make the commitment to yourself and stay true to it, and by extension you are a heck of a person in the workplace and to other people in your life as well.

    As far as which Habits I found most relevant at this particular juncture in my life, I feel the prioritization concept and especially the Quadrants stood out. Although I actually do spend a good amount of time in Quadrant II, I could stand to make drastic reductions to my time spent in other boxes which I'm sure would improve my quality of life (not that I'm discontent in the slightest now – but it'd be a nice "bonus"). Like Brian, I too feel that I am constantly coming to terms with my Mission and taking steps to realize it. The difficulty I'm finding is – what do you do if you have more than one major talent or life-shaping opportunity? Do you try to hybridize them into some bizarre dual-career? Do you choose which one seems a little better than the other? Do you place weight on your past efforts and where your path has led thus far, or do you cut ties and forge a new path into the unknown completely discarding your previous efforts? My fear, that I'm increasingly coming to terms with and becoming aware of, is that forging into the unknown may in fact end up being the choice I must make, but it's such a wild departure from my current station that it would feel almost irresponsible and/or unfeasible to pursue immediately. So then, is the present a waste of time, or just a step along the path wherein I grow and become better prepared to make the 180-degree flip? Pardon all the rhetorical questions, and feel free to respond to them, but this is the conundrum I currently face and would very much like to proceed as a person of the highest integrity would.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      this is fantastic!

      obviously, those are exactly the questions we each need to answer for ourselves and there are no simple answers (and certainly none from anyone but ourselves!) but good news is we're going to explore them again and again and again throughout these 50 days! especially when we do the big leap in a few days!

      also: check out the joseph campbell companion for some specific mojo here! :)

  • cobracommander9 says:

    I found literally all of the nuggets of wisdom to ring true – and I really enjoyed the complementary/corroborating quotes in the left margin of the page. All of the Habits are essential and I think Covey was humble in titling his book using the label of “effective people” which does not reflect the full spectrum of what he was communicating. Certainly the list of seven items was good, but as Covey states, and as Brian Johnson correctly gleaned from his work – is that integrity (assuming you're not a deranged psychopath) is a sufficient principle to encapsulate everything you need to lead an amazing life. It implies that you make the commitment to yourself and stay true to it, and by extension you are a heck of a person in the workplace and to other people in your life as well.

    As far as which Habits I found most relevant at this particular juncture in my life, I feel the prioritization concept and especially the Quadrants stood out. Although I actually do spend a good amount of time in Quadrant II, I could stand to make drastic reductions to my time spent in other boxes which I'm sure would improve my quality of life (not that I'm discontent in the slightest now – but it'd be a nice “bonus”). Like Brian, I too feel that I am constantly coming to terms with my Mission and taking steps to realize it. The difficulty I'm finding is – what do you do if you have more than one major talent or life-shaping opportunity? Do you try to hybridize them into some bizarre dual-career? Do you choose which one seems a little better than the other? Do you place weight on your past efforts and where your path has led thus far, or do you cut ties and forge a new path into the unknown completely discarding your previous efforts? My fear, that I'm increasingly coming to terms with and becoming aware of, is that forging into the unknown may in fact end up being the choice I must make, but it's such a wild departure from my current station that it would feel almost irresponsible and/or unfeasible to pursue immediately. So then, is the present a waste of time, or just a step along the path wherein I grow and become better prepared to make the 180-degree flip? Pardon all the rhetorical questions, and feel free to respond to them, but this is the conundrum I currently face and would very much like to proceed as a person of the highest integrity would.

  • StepT says:

    The scope of the book demonstrates the difficulty Brian faced in trying to condense everything into highlights. This is a book that demands studying in its entirety.

    When I first read the book and then listened to an abridged version on audio cassette I first learned about paradigms. All of the seven habits (and dare I venture at this stage to guess that all of the points which will be discussed in the 100 books) require paradigm shifts in the way you see yourself and in the way you view the world. In the book Covey gives an
    example of a paradigm shift.

    Covey was traveling in a subway one quiet Sunday morning when a man got in with his two sons. The boyss were running around annoying the other passengers. This continued for a while and finally Covey, now a bit irate, asked the father why he couldn't do something to control his sons. The father replied that they had just got back from the hospital where their mother had died. He didn't know how to handle it and guessed that his sons didn't either.

    Like the Four Agreements, adopting the habits allows them to work synegistically magnifying the impact of the others. In some respectss it is similar to when you take nutritional supplements, taking one nutrient/herb/vitamin will often increase the effect and effectiveness of another taken at the same time.

  • StepT says:

    The scope of the book demonstrates the difficulty Brian faced in trying to condense everything into highlights. This is a book that demands studying in its entirety.

    When I first read the book and then listened to an abridged version on audio cassette I first learned about paradigms. All of the seven habits (and dare I venture at this stage to guess that all of the points which will be discussed in the 100 books) require paradigm shifts in the way you see yourself and in the way you view the world. In the book Covey gives an
    example of a paradigm shift.

    Covey was traveling in a subway one quiet Sunday morning when a man got in with his two sons. The boyss were running around annoying the other passengers. This continued for a while and finally Covey, now a bit irate, asked the father why he couldn't do something to control his sons. The father replied that they had just got back from the hospital where their mother had died. He didn't know how to handle it and guessed that his sons didn't either.

    Like the Four Agreements, adopting the habits allows them to work synegistically magnifying the impact of the others. In some respectss it is similar to when you take nutritional supplements, taking one nutrient/herb/vitamin will often increase the effect and effectiveness of another taken at the same time.

  • roynaim says:

    [youtube kha8fFJrf0c http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kha8fFJrf0c youtube]

    Let me know what you think please about my view on being proactive.

  • roynaim says:

    [youtube kha8fFJrf0c http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kha8fFJrf0c youtube]

    Let me know what you think please about my view on being proactive.

  • roynaim says:

    [youtube kha8fFJrf0c http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kha8fFJrf0c youtube]

    Let me know what you think please about my view on being proactive.

    • BrianJohnson says:

      you're ROCKIN' it, roy!! thx for sharing!!

      love your emphasis on “response-ability” and how passionate you are!! :)

    • emilierocket says:

      What a GREAT energy!!! Making the change , Love your quote on the telephone's history, clear as water!
      we DO need to take more actions and being more proactive and it's an everyday fight,
      Let us all be warriors!!!
      and thank you for sharing!! :)

      • Roy Naim says:

        Thank you so much Lisa!!!

        Greatly appreciate. I had another video on the next day here but then my camera broke but no worries, just ordered another one!!

        The telephone history is powerful and something often overlook…it is not about who started it but rather who will run with it.

  • Stina says:

    Fantastic! I really took a lot out of this note, but identifying your roles and creating goals for each, really made a lot of sense to me.
    So that's the one thing I'm going to do today – right now in fact!!

  • Stina says:

    Fantastic! I really took a lot out of this note, but identifying your roles and creating goals for each, really made a lot of sense to me.
    So that's the one thing I'm going to do today – right now in fact!!

  • Stina says:

    Fantastic! I really took a lot out of this note, but identifying your roles and creating goals for each, really made a lot of sense to me.
    So that's the one thing I'm going to do today – right now in fact!!

    • BrianJohnson says:

      love it, stina!

      here's something i've been noodling: starting with roles–>goals and then adding RITUALS that support those roles–>goals. excited to talk more about that soon! :)

      • Stina says:

        Aha, brilliant! Repetition makes the master. And I do really think we are all slaves to our rituals, but too often the wrong ones.

        Thanks Brian! I'm definitely going to go and design some NEW rituals too!

  • jordang says:

    My sticking points from this note are:

    1. Be Proactive. Very simple, but easy to forget and retreat to your comfort zone.

    "Have you ever seen a dreamer lock his dreams up?
    Sabotage himself like his thoughts don't mean enough?
    Well I ain't tryna be that, you got me cleaned up
    Can't mix the yellow with the blue and get the green stuff
    Ain't no time to be scared and sad
    What I got's much rarer than that, I do care but in fact
    I don't care what you think, though I've been there before
    I now know more, I more know me
    I'm living to my full capacity
    Tryna spill a little game and soak a splash of three
    Focused past the obvious, ask of me
    More than your average, half a G
    Cause I can hear the birds chirping and feel the words working
    Where the curb's serving, a smoking herb's surfing
    Today you'll catch a wave
    Let your guard down and be free or that's a slave
    And this is true … It's all true "

    -The Grouch from a song called "Here I Am"

    2. Begin with the End in Mind

    Visualize yourself doing it. Visualize, visualize, visualize. I have been taught this in all levels of football and it definitely applies to all other professions as well. Visualize the end, but also visualize yourself taking each of the baby steps required to achieve your goal. Visualize the big picture, and the baby steps, but keep your end goal in mind. Spend some time seeing yourself where you want to be in life. The funeral example hits home as well.

    3. Seek First to Understand, then to be Understood.

    It is easy to try to communicate your view without understanding where the listener is coming from. Very important to hear the person you speaking to out so you can understand them and what they want to hear. We hear so many people talk about themselves without any interest in the other person.

  • jordang says:

    My sticking points from this note are:

    1. Be Proactive. Very simple, but easy to forget and retreat to your comfort zone.

    “Have you ever seen a dreamer lock his dreams up?
    Sabotage himself like his thoughts don't mean enough?
    Well I ain't tryna be that, you got me cleaned up
    Can't mix the yellow with the blue and get the green stuff
    Ain't no time to be scared and sad
    What I got's much rarer than that, I do care but in fact
    I don't care what you think, though I've been there before
    I now know more, I more know me
    I'm living to my full capacity
    Tryna spill a little game and soak a splash of three
    Focused past the obvious, ask of me
    More than your average, half a G
    Cause I can hear the birds chirping and feel the words working
    Where the curb's serving, a smoking herb's surfing
    Today you'll catch a wave
    Let your guard down and be free or that's a slave
    And this is true … It's all true ”

    -The Grouch from a song called “Here I Am”

    2. Begin with the End in Mind

    Visualize yourself doing it. Visualize, visualize, visualize. I have been taught this in all levels of football and it definitely applies to all other professions as well. Visualize the end, but also visualize yourself taking each of the baby steps required to achieve your goal. Visualize the big picture, and the baby steps, but keep your end goal in mind. Spend some time seeing yourself where you want to be in life. The funeral example hits home as well.

    3. Seek First to Understand, then to be Understood.

    It is easy to try to communicate your view without understanding where the listener is coming from. Very important to hear the person you speaking to out so you can understand them and what they want to hear. We hear so many people talk about themselves without any interest in the other person.

  • lcjane says:

    I read this book a few years ago but didn't really understand it or how to apply it. Having becoming more enlightened in the last year I now see the meaning and absolute usefulness of employing these habits.

    The quadrants are a great reminder to have printed out and stuck up somewhere in your workplace and at home.

  • lcjane says:

    I read this book a few years ago but didn't really understand it or how to apply it. Having becoming more enlightened in the last year I now see the meaning and absolute usefulness of employing these habits.

    The quadrants are a great reminder to have printed out and stuck up somewhere in your workplace and at home.

  • Tracy Girard says:

    My aha Moment
    Begin with the end in mind. I love this – keeping the end in your heart and mind will help me to move past procrastination and continue to take the baby steps forward. I think I’m very clear with the end picture, it’s the journey that sometimes becomes overwhelming feeling to me. Baby steps while enjoying the ride is my focus in 2010!

    Did some work around laying out those baby steps, and the priority list that I will follow to complete them. I am feeling good about my plan, and definitely am believing that it is possible!

  • Tracy Girard says:

    My aha Moment
    Begin with the end in mind. I love this – keeping the end in your heart and mind will help me to move past procrastination and continue to take the baby steps forward. I think I’m very clear with the end picture, it’s the journey that sometimes becomes overwhelming feeling to me. Baby steps while enjoying the ride is my focus in 2010!

    Did some work around laying out those baby steps, and the priority list that I will follow to complete them. I am feeling good about my plan, and definitely am believing that it is possible!

  • bellastager says:

    I really like the idea of "begin with the end in mind". It really makes you think through what ever the situation is and could be especially helpful, for example, when starting a business with a partner, or maybe just on how you choose to treat people on a daily basis! I may have to actually read the whole book now!

  • bellastager says:

    I really like the idea of “begin with the end in mind”. It really makes you think through what ever the situation is and could be especially helpful, for example, when starting a business with a partner, or maybe just on how you choose to treat people on a daily basis! I may have to actually read the whole book now!

  • john_carey says:

    Wow lots of posts again today, and awesome insights. I learn so much from reading others' perspectives on the very same material I reviewed. Listened to the mp3 & reviewed the pdf today (I like to follow along w/ Brian and then read it again on my own to help it 'stick'). I LOVE the principle-centered or value-based approach towards success. Overcoming the "integrity gap" is something I've encountered many times in Brian's notes and I think its starting to change me as a person. Too many times have I given an insincere "yes" when a polite "no" would have been more honest and saved both parties time. In this note it becomes clear that when you are so committed to your own values that you begin to act more genuinely with the world around you. So this becomes my practice… and by practice I mean… PRACTICE! Quadrant 2 stuff is really all I have to work on, which as a side benefit sharpens the saw.

    Exercise — I just lost 40lbs. and looking to lose another 20 or so while building muscle!
    Meditation — according to Ken Wilber the only way to jump 2 or more stage conceptions in THIS lifetime.
    Reading — I get lost too often in my own narratives, which tend to be boring…time to tap into some more knowledge and perspectives of other great individuals!
    Journaling — Priceless, & THANKS Brian for doing impromptu videos on your journaling processes, such as mind mapping.
    Gratitude(log.com) — THE happiness practice. In the few short weeks I have used the service the things I am grateful for are shining even brighter, and I find my mind orienting to that which is good in my life rather than that which isn't so good.

    Loving this theme of intention, daily rituals, and productive goals…and letting go of the outcomes. I've never been good at predicting the future anyway :]

  • john_carey says:

    Wow lots of posts again today, and awesome insights. I learn so much from reading others' perspectives on the very same material I reviewed. Listened to the mp3 & reviewed the pdf today (I like to follow along w/ Brian and then read it again on my own to help it 'stick'). I LOVE the principle-centered or value-based approach towards success. Overcoming the “integrity gap” is something I've encountered many times in Brian's notes and I think its starting to change me as a person. Too many times have I given an insincere “yes” when a polite “no” would have been more honest and saved both parties time. In this note it becomes clear that when you are so committed to your own values that you begin to act more genuinely with the world around you. So this becomes my practice… and by practice I mean… PRACTICE! Quadrant 2 stuff is really all I have to work on, which as a side benefit sharpens the saw.

    Exercise — I just lost 40lbs. and looking to lose another 20 or so while building muscle!
    Meditation — according to Ken Wilber the only way to jump 2 or more stage conceptions in THIS lifetime.
    Reading — I get lost too often in my own narratives, which tend to be boring…time to tap into some more knowledge and perspectives of other great individuals!
    Journaling — Priceless, & THANKS Brian for doing impromptu videos on your journaling processes, such as mind mapping.
    Gratitude(log.com) — THE happiness practice. In the few short weeks I have used the service the things I am grateful for are shining even brighter, and I find my mind orienting to that which is good in my life rather than that which isn't so good.

    Loving this theme of intention, daily rituals, and productive goals…and letting go of the outcomes. I've never been good at predicting the future anyway :]

  • katrinaT says:

    Pt.1 – ah yes, going from inertia to movement …my biggest hurdle these days. I've learned though, to be easy with myself. I find that when I set my goals too high (relative) I shoot myself down before I start. So I've started with baby step rituals (making my bed every morning, journaling each night before bed and, of course, keeping my commitments to the challenge) and I give myself a high-five for everything I accomplish, no matter how small. It really works! After a long dark night of the soul for me, this is the only way. I cannot jump into things the way I did before the events that brought me so low, but, thanks to this and many other supports that have been drawn to me, I see that am better than before and more able to ground the knowledge that I'm getting now. Breakdown, breakthrough

    The note today has had a profound effect on me. I listened to it several times, and also notes on "The Gifted Adult" and "Happier". Its almost as if I'm coming fully into my body. I've been partially present for so long. I can feel the ground forming beneath my feet with these tools and rituals.

  • katrinaT says:

    Pt.1 – ah yes, going from inertia to movement …my biggest hurdle these days. I've learned though, to be easy with myself. I find that when I set my goals too high (relative) I shoot myself down before I start. So I've started with baby step rituals (making my bed every morning, journaling each night before bed and, of course, keeping my commitments to the challenge) and I give myself a high-five for everything I accomplish, no matter how small. It really works! After a long dark night of the soul for me, this is the only way. I cannot jump into things the way I did before the events that brought me so low, but, thanks to this and many other supports that have been drawn to me, I see that am better than before and more able to ground the knowledge that I'm getting now. Breakdown, breakthrough

    The note today has had a profound effect on me. I listened to it several times, and also notes on “The Gifted Adult” and “Happier”. Its almost as if I'm coming fully into my body. I've been partially present for so long. I can feel the ground forming beneath my feet with these tools and rituals.

  • katrinaT says:

    Pt 2 – The quandrants that Covey uses are great. I sat for about 45 minutes with this and the results weren't terribly surprising but they were a little. I spend less than 2% of the time going for my most important goals. What do I think is going to happen with that? What the heck else is more important? Why else am I here on the planet except to make myself and it better? So many ways I've been out of integrity with myself and as a result, others. And the damage done to my psyche? No wonder I was walking around feeling like crap! I've always known that I am responsible for my life but in the last few years I felt like ship without a compass. This challenge is just what I needed and I'm so committed to playing to my fullest. I haven't felt like this since …honestly, Idon't think I've ever felt so throroughly empowered. Strong enough to be fully present.

  • Aeryck says:

    This was such a great note. 7 Habits was about the first personal development book I ever read back in about 1996 and it changed me completely. For the first time, I was able to investigate my own thought processes and pay attention to the difference between my values and behavior. It kicked off my path in a major way. The quote on Integrity still blows me away. I truly think Integrity is the most important attribute a human being can cultivate.

  • ross says:

    I loved this quote — I now have something to aspire to :^}

    “I get up every morning determined both to change the world and to have one hell of a good time. Sometimes, this makes planning the day difficult.”
    ~ E.B. White

    I will do the exercise on defining your mission. Something I've been mindful of recently is the importance of passion in goal setting / goal realization. I struggle with defining and/or declaring what it is I want. I can think about many things that would be nice — but haven't defined the space / outcome that I have passion for — I want to begin with the end in mind, but I can't define the end yet.

    Various ideas scrawled down as an outcome of various exercises — IMO getting there is when not if.

    I was also thinking about the venn diagram across the 7 habits — it seems like there are overlaps and connections — synergy within the habits — as an example focus on box 2 creates time to sharpen the saw, sharpening the saw creates space to focus on box 2

  • ross says:

    I loved this quote — I now have something to aspire to :^}

    “I get up every morning determined both to change the world and to have one hell of a good time. Sometimes, this makes planning the day difficult.”
    ~ E.B. White

    I will do the exercise on defining your mission. Something I've been mindful of recently is the importance of passion in goal setting / goal realization. I struggle with defining and/or declaring what it is I want. I can think about many things that would be nice — but haven't defined the space / outcome that I have passion for — I want to begin with the end in mind, but I can't define the end yet.

    Various ideas scrawled down as an outcome of various exercises — IMO getting there is when not if.

    I was also thinking about the venn diagram across the 7 habits — it seems like there are overlaps and connections — synergy within the habits — as an example focus on box 2 creates time to sharpen the saw, sharpening the saw creates space to focus on box 2

  • cmangham says:

    I've been familiar with Covey's second quadrant for a while now but the distillation in this Note format is very helpful. All too often I'm in Q1 fighting fires, or procrastinating in areas that are not time-sensitive and not important. Partly I think that's because there because there seems to be too few frequent rewards in Q2 to help pull me along. But I think that partly it's back to Ruiz's baby steps … incremental gains, checking off the list, will help get to the important goals that are bigger picture and further out. I also like the Habit #2, beginning with the end in mind, especially in my business of marketing, branding and entrepreneurial business development, all of which require some vision of what "can and/or should be" in advance of embarking on the mission to create it. I wrote a quote on my wall a couple of months ago that reversed "Finish what you start" into "Start what you finish" — meaning, finish the picture in your mind, finish the blueprint, the plan, get it right, then commence implementation. That works for me!

    Also, I know we are only on Day 2, but already I see some "synergy" between Notes 1 and 2 … here I like that Covey, similar to Ruiz, emphasizes the need to say NO to those activities that do not serve your higher self and purpose … Ruiz referred to it as sinning against your true self. And as someone who often finds it difficult to say NO, this is great compounding. Onward!

  • cmangham says:

    I've been familiar with Covey's second quadrant for a while now but the distillation in this Note format is very helpful. All too often I'm in Q1 fighting fires, or procrastinating in areas that are not time-sensitive and not important. Partly I think that's because there because there seems to be too few frequent rewards in Q2 to help pull me along. But I think that partly it's back to Ruiz's baby steps … incremental gains, checking off the list, will help get to the important goals that are bigger picture and further out. I also like the Habit #2, beginning with the end in mind, especially in my business of marketing, branding and entrepreneurial business development, all of which require some vision of what “can and/or should be” in advance of embarking on the mission to create it. I wrote a quote on my wall a couple of months ago that reversed “Finish what you start” into “Start what you finish” — meaning, finish the picture in your mind, finish the blueprint, the plan, get it right, then commence implementation. That works for me!

    Also, I know we are only on Day 2, but already I see some “synergy” between Notes 1 and 2 … here I like that Covey, similar to Ruiz, emphasizes the need to say NO to those activities that do not serve your higher self and purpose … Ruiz referred to it as sinning against your true self. And as someone who often finds it difficult to say NO, this is great compounding. Onward!

  • katrinaT says:

    I was wondering the same thing! I saw his post and said “oh, there's hope for me” but alas …NOT! Ha!

  • Nicole says:

    Thanks guys for getting this Challenge together – I'm already feeling shifts by Day 2!The habit of Sharpening the Saw really resonated with me as I've been trying to put this into practice the last couple of months and found it's a good description for the process I've been going through. I was really treading water and wearing myself in doing so – this challenge is part of the sharpening process for me! I don't think that any of the other habits can be as effective if you don't anchor them with this process. Good luck everyone – wishing you brilliant insights!

  • mdhtoday says:

    Many thanks to all for your wonderful insight. This Note illuminates my need to better understand the quadrants for peace of mind.

  • sethlarrabee says:

    Read the book listen to the unabridged audios. Mad a profound difference in my life! Love it…

  • sethlarrabee says:

    Read the book – listen to the unabridged audios regularly. Made a profound difference in my life! Love it…

  • Jacque444 says:

    Hi PN Tribe,
    I was amused to be on my morning walk when Brian talked about Quadrant 2 and Sharpening the Saw-I WAS in that quadrant living one of the habits already-amazing!!!
    I am sharing the 50 day challenge with others so hope they can join in now we have started-not sure about this??
    Thanks
    Blessings and hugs on the journey………seeing the end and the massive expansion of consciousness…..definately an idea whose time has come xxxx

  • Jacque444 says:

    Hi PN Tribe,
    I was amused to be on my morning walk when Brian talked about Quadrant 2 and Sharpening the Saw-I WAS in that quadrant living one of the habits already-amazing!!!
    I am sharing the 50 day challenge with others so hope they can join in now we have started-not sure about this??
    Thanks
    Blessings and hugs on the journey………seeing the end and the massive expansion of consciousness…..definately an idea whose time has come xxxx

  • phil_niemela says:

    Sharpen those saws!!! Mine has been dull for a while, maybe even a little rusty :) So many people determined to improve, it's great to see!

    Live easy

  • phil_niemela says:

    Sharpen those saws!!! Mine has been dull for a while, maybe even a little rusty :) So many people determined to improve, it's great to see!

    Live easy

  • MindfulMadi says:

    Read this book a couple of years ago and loved it… it's great to revisit it in this format and surrounded by such amazing peeps. I am stoked to confirm that I am, indeed, NOT Pavlovian!! I had forgotten about the quadrants. It was very timely for me to dig them back out of the bag of tricks. I applied this as soon as I got to the office this morning and voila! I tackled the icecap on the top of the mountain of small stuff that needed to be cleared from my mind. Hey, ya' gotta' start somewhere, right? SO ready for day #3! Gotta' go to quadrant 2 for a bit and change my ringtone on my phone alarm to play a happy tune when I wake up tomorrow morning. Cheers!

  • Diannak says:

    Much Intelligent regret on assuming this book was only for the ambitious business person!

    Have now added this book to my ever expanding library……..but it will have to wait til this challenge is over as Stephen says, First Things First, and I am very much enjoying both the PNs and everyones comments!

  • CVircillo says:

    I have to re-read this book. Somehow I did not internalize it so many years ago. Big idea from this note is – #2 Get clear on your highest “end” goals and line up every thing you do today (and tomorrow and …) to be in integrity with these ideals. Everything follows from there.
    Love note in habit 3 – planting priorities- same reference.
    The basic problem is that their priorities have not become deeply planted in their hearts and minds.

    Get clear on your interests, intents, passions, purpose, self…whatever you want to call it. Apply from there.
    xo and goodnight,
    Christina

  • CVircillo says:

    I have to re-read this book. Somehow I did not internalize it so many years ago. Big idea from this note is – #2 Get clear on your highest “end” goals and line up every thing you do today (and tomorrow and …) to be in integrity with these ideals. Everything follows from there.
    Love note in habit 3 – planting priorities- same reference.
    The basic problem is that their priorities have not become deeply planted in their hearts and minds.

    Get clear on your interests, intents, passions, purpose, self…whatever you want to call it. Apply from there.
    xo and goodnight,
    Christina

  • susieg293 says:

    While listening/reading the 7 Habits note these things kept banging through my brain: 1 I am not good at the discilpline needed to follow through on my commitments. 2. I think I am prioritizing, take some action for a bit, then life gets in the way. 3. Does this mean the things I think are important to me, like a yoga business are not for me? 4. Or..do I just need to strive to be more consistent and make the habits necessary to finish my goals. 6/. What am I afraid of?
    Stay tuned for the next 48 days, maybe these questions will have answers and action!

  • susieg293 says:

    While listening/reading the 7 Habits note these things kept banging through my brain: 1 I am not good at the discilpline needed to follow through on my commitments. 2. I think I am prioritizing, take some action for a bit, then life gets in the way. 3. Does this mean the things I think are important to me, like a yoga business are not for me? 4. Or..do I just need to strive to be more consistent and make the habits necessary to finish my goals. 6/. What am I afraid of?
    Stay tuned for the next 48 days, maybe these questions will have answers and action!

  • Francesca says:

    Happy Tuesday…

    I will be bringing in the notes to the school I work with and have my social skills group follow along with us. They are so excited and so am I. The two most excited of the students are both autistic. I have a bulletin board that I will title "50 Day Challenge" and add the notes daily and incorporate them into my social skills group. We are already doing a gratitude journal so this is the perfect addition.

    Brian and Vishen,
    Thank you for changing the world, one philospher note at a time……

  • Francesca says:

    Happy Tuesday…

    I will be bringing in the notes to the school I work with and have my social skills group follow along with us. They are so excited and so am I. The two most excited of the students are both autistic. I have a bulletin board that I will title “50 Day Challenge” and add the notes daily and incorporate them into my social skills group. We are already doing a gratitude journal so this is the perfect addition.

    Brian and Vishen,
    Thank you for changing the world, one philospher note at a time……

  • JamesRadina says:

    Genius… Both of these first two lessons start with HUGE CONCEPTS:

    1. "Be Impeccable With Your Word" From the Four Agreements.
    2. "Be Proactive" with the main point being "Honor Your Commitments"

    Brian, as a person who works closely with and for a fellow personal development Guru, what you have done here is Genius. Start your 50 day challenge off with concepts that are educating people on how to keep commitments. The people that are going to get the most out of this program, the most growth, are those that honor their commitment to DO this challenge!

    These concepts are calling us out. I know I am ready for the commitment, for the challenge, for the adventure. I am committed and I will be Impecable With My Word!

    James Radina
    Brian Tracy International
    James@BrianTracy.com
    <a href="http://www.budurl.com/assessmentbgs” target=”_blank”>www.budurl.com/assessmentbgs

  • JamesRadina says:

    Genius… Both of these first two lessons start with HUGE CONCEPTS:

    1. "Be Impeccable With Your Word" From the Four Agreements.
    2. "Be Proactive" with the main point being "Honor Your Commitments"

    Brian, as a person who works closely with and for a fellow personal development Guru, what you have done here is Genius. Start your 50 day challenge off with concepts that are educating people on how to keep commitments. The people that are going to get the most out of this program, the most growth, are those that honor their commitment to DO this challenge!

    These concepts are calling us out. I know I am ready for the commitment, for the challenge, for the adventure. I am committed and I will be Impecable With My Word!

    James Radina
    Brian Tracy International
    James@BrianTracy.com
    " target="_blank"&gt <a href="http://;www.budurl.com/assessmentbgs” target=”_blank”>;www.budurl.com/assessmentbgs

  • JamesRadina says:

    Genius… Both of these first two lessons start with HUGE CONCEPTS:

    1. “Be Impeccable With Your Word” From the Four Agreements.
    2. “Be Proactive” with the main point being “Honor Your Commitments”

    Brian, as a person who works closely with and for a fellow personal development Guru, what you have done here is Genius. Start your 50 day challenge off with concepts that are educating people on how to keep commitments. The people that are going to get the most out of this program, the most growth, are those that honor their commitment to DO this challenge!

    These concepts are calling us out. I know I am ready for the commitment, for the challenge, for the adventure. I am committed and I will be Impecable With My Word!

    James Radina
    Brian Tracy International
    James@BrianTracy.com
    ” target=”_blank”&gt “” target=”_blank”>;www.budurl.com/assessmentbgs“ target=”_blank”> ” target=”_blank”>;www.budurl.com/assessmentbgs

  • KittyMoring says:

    Day 2

    1) Put My Life purpose to black and white.
    2) Commitments- release or complete
    3) State my two "End" goals

  • KittyMoring says:

    Day 2

    1) Put My Life purpose to black and white.
    2) Commitments- release or complete
    3) State my two “End” goals

  • luvurwings says:

    Reading the first paragraph in the Notes blew me away. For some reason I had thought intangible things like self-esteem came to me when I made up my mind they would. I could say my affirmations and keep my thoughts positive and voila! I'd have high self esteem and not have to worry about anything. Well, many years later I can say my self esteem is not much higher than it was and I still don't see myself as fantastic. Why? Because I've been taking the psychological route instead of the plain old every day work it out route. I'm serious. I'm back to where I was when my mother told me many years ago that anything I wanted I had to work for. That also included the intangibles like self esteem. Back to the drawing board and this time get a plan going.

  • coffeymd says:

    7 Habits makes me think of the great description of habits that Brian shares in the note on Psychocybernetics. The word habits originally meant clothing (I think of nun's habits) and we currently wear the habits that fit us, and like it or not they serve some purpose for us. If we want to change, then we have to shed the current habits we have and try on some new ones, and then work to grow into them. This makes it seem more playful and not so daunting to change a habit.

  • coffeymd says:

    I have never identified as much with Habit #1's main title of "Be proactive" as I have with it's sort of subtitle of "Be responsible" or "Be response able". I see being proactive and being responsible as 2 different issues, and to me, taking responsibility resonates more as a core principle, as we see in just about every other Note. "Be proactive" evokes to me more of a sense of "don't sit around and let life come at you, go make your own opportunities", and I think that is a good sentiment, but not what I would make Habit #1. Whereas, taking resonsibility for one's own life and recognizing that our current circumstances are a result of the millions of choices that we have made in the past and accepting, and even loving, this current reality; that feels more like a core principle to me.

  • coffeymd says:

    I have never identified as much with Habit #1's main title of “Be proactive” as I have with it's sort of subtitle of “Be responsible” or “Be response able”. I see being proactive and being responsible as 2 different issues, and to me, taking responsibility resonates more as a core principle, as we see in just about every other Note. “Be proactive” evokes to me more of a sense of “don't sit around and let life come at you, go make your own opportunities”, and I think that is a good sentiment, but not what I would make Habit #1. Whereas, taking resonsibility for one's own life and recognizing that our current circumstances are a result of the millions of choices that we have made in the past and accepting, and even loving, this current reality; that feels more like a core principle to me.

  • puresue says:

    i smile through the day even more than before knowing i get to share these works with so many inspiring people :) thanks:)
    substantially simple knowledge here in this book…
    being responsible, and committed even enough to say NO…
    my first real No came just a few weeks ago and it felt GREAT! the best part was the person i said no to completely understood…

    i also love the 1+1=3 i love asking for help and getting the power, energy and resources from great minds …..until 2morro… namaste, puresue

  • puresue says:

    i smile through the day even more than before knowing i get to share these works with so many inspiring people :) thanks:)
    substantially simple knowledge here in this book…
    being responsible, and committed even enough to say NO…
    my first real No came just a few weeks ago and it felt GREAT! the best part was the person i said no to completely understood…

    i also love the 1+1=3 i love asking for help and getting the power, energy and resources from great minds …..until 2morro… namaste, puresue

  • JorgeLarios says:

    Wich ideas stick more from this book, I would say BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND, How powerful is when I picture my own funeral n I hear the people talking about my life the things I didnt do, I see it kind a negative funeral, because they talk about all the human potential wasted, the ideas, dreams the never share with them n the world. This exercise make me reflect on the kind of life I want to enjoy every day from now on, The second idea was SYNERGY How working together we will achieve more and las but not least SHARPEN THE SAW How adopting new habits will give our lives a feeling of happiness, contribution and fulfillment [ I choose 3 for this year the will going to rock my world, read, meditate n working out]

  • TVaclavicek says:

    Definitely a must read book. I highly recommend buying it, especially if you enjoyed the notes from it. And the notes provide a good, although a bit short in this case, summary….

  • I read the first couple of chapters 2-3 years ago, listened to the abridged edition 6 months ago and just now listened to and followed along with the pdf note. Brian's note gave an overall summary of the whole book, and it was great because it puts all of Covey's ideas into there proper slots.

    The main thing I got from but wasn't mentioned in Brian's note was the circle of influence and the circle of concern.

    From Brian's note the main idea that resonated with me was the commitment; I was making them and not keeping them. I didn't know the effect this was having on me, and now I do.

    Finally another big one was the quadrants. I found myself spending a lot of time in quadrant I, III, and IV ( watching porn, listening to music, catching up on latest tv sitcoms, catching the latest fights, gossiping about employees to other employees, etc) and little time in quadrant II (reading books, listening to cds, solving problems, etc).

    I read through a lot of the notes that preceded this, and got a little nugget out of approximately every other one. A thank you goes out to everyone for posting, as the posts/comments are helping to stimulate my thinking process; and in the process making my post that much easier to type.

  • Ashkan Mirzai says:

    I read the first couple of chapters 2-3 years ago, listened to the abridged edition 6 months ago and just now listened to and followed along with the pdf note. Brian's note gave an overall summary of the whole book, and it was great because it puts all of Covey's ideas into there proper slots.

    The main thing I got from but wasn't mentioned in Brian's note was the circle of influence and the circle of concern.

    From Brian's note the main idea that resonated with me was the commitment; I was making them and not keeping them. I didn't know the effect this was having on me, and now I do.

    Finally another big one was the quadrants. I found myself spending a lot of time in quadrant I, III, and IV ( watching porn, listening to music, catching up on latest tv sitcoms, catching the latest fights, gossiping about employees to other employees, etc) and little time in quadrant II (reading books, listening to cds, solving problems, etc).

    I read through a lot of the notes that preceded this, and got a little nugget out of approximately every other one. A thank you goes out to everyone for posting, as the posts/comments are helping to stimulate my thinking process; and in the process making my post that much easier to type.

  • TedHowardKK says:

    Thanks Brian & Vishen, and everyone else

    Making that inventory of commitments was powerful.
    I see that there is no way that I could possibly deliver on all the things I had committed to.
    It was interesting, in writing them down, that more kept showing up, some of which had substantial time commitments.
    My ability to lock things out of my awareness is both strength and weakness.
    A very powerful exercise.
    One I need to do again soon in greater depth – this evening!

    I see that I spend a lot of time in quadrant 2, and probably almost as much in quadrant 4, with smaller amounts in 1 & 3.
    Lots of folks see me as effective, and I see I can be so much more so.

    It seems that spacing out the commitments in time, and bringing the full focus of my attention to them one at a time is what is required. Starting with the second cut at the prioritising of commitments.

    With many interruptions, it has taken me almost 7 hours to do the work – probably only about 40 minutes actual time.

    Thank you again Brian, and Stephen, and all those many thousands (millions) who contributed in their part, in their time, to making this possible, from Covey's mentors and ancestors, to all the many thousands who have contributed to the many layers, levels, and types of technology that supports this conversation.

    It is indeed amazing what becomes possible when many people contribute their intuitions tot he collective "culture".

  • TedHowardKK says:

    Thanks Brian & Vishen, and everyone else

    Making that inventory of commitments was powerful.
    I see that there is no way that I could possibly deliver on all the things I had committed to.
    It was interesting, in writing them down, that more kept showing up, some of which had substantial time commitments.
    My ability to lock things out of my awareness is both strength and weakness.
    A very powerful exercise.
    One I need to do again soon in greater depth – this evening!

    I see that I spend a lot of time in quadrant 2, and probably almost as much in quadrant 4, with smaller amounts in 1 & 3.
    Lots of folks see me as effective, and I see I can be so much more so.

    It seems that spacing out the commitments in time, and bringing the full focus of my attention to them one at a time is what is required. Starting with the second cut at the prioritising of commitments.

    With many interruptions, it has taken me almost 7 hours to do the work – probably only about 40 minutes actual time.

    Thank you again Brian, and Stephen, and all those many thousands (millions) who contributed in their part, in their time, to making this possible, from Covey's mentors and ancestors, to all the many thousands who have contributed to the many layers, levels, and types of technology that supports this conversation.

    It is indeed amazing what becomes possible when many people contribute their intuitions tot he collective “culture”.

  • Electra_A says:

    Day 2! Love the SYNERGY between yesterday's note and today's: The commitments we make- are you being PROACTIVE- towards your MISSION in life or REACTIVE- saying yes, overcommitting, to please, to be nice…whatever…__For me the sticky points were: 1. SAYING NO, because you are saying YES to something BIGGER…your mission! Loved that visual…__2. Hang out in Quad #2! Nearly shut down Quad#4- time vampires!__3. To find our specific mission in life is WORK- but so worthwhile! Here's to completing day 2 and further defining and working towards our ROLES and GOALS synergistialiciously! YaY!

  • This is fun, the Seven Habits is one of my all time favorites, I keep a copy of the habits in my journal. Its all about building an exceptional life, interaction by interaction. Everything counts, Treat every interaction as an opportunity to build the best “you” possible. We have the road and the map therefore it follows that we can get to our destination, so bring some friends along for the ride and enjoy every minute of it.

  • Francesca says:

    Welcome!
    Happy Day 1 of the journey….
    I couldn't get this logged onto yesterday's comment so here goes.

    The 4 Agreements is the equation to WORLD PEACE, I believe.
    When I first read this book in 2001, I was in a wonderful place emotionally, physically and spiritually therefore I found it easy to follow the agreements.
    Over the years, I have become complacent and I let life take over my thoughts and this has lead to some chaos in my spiritual mind.
    I realize that REPETITION, REPETITION, and REPETITION is the key to keep the agreements up close and personal in my life.
    Thank you for this opportunity.
    The timing couldn't be better.
    I have been trying to get pregnant in the last few years without success.
    I am hoping that the challenge will help get me back on track and all your prayers will help my dream baby come true.
    Sweet dreams……

  • LeeCredicott says:

    Wow! what a great day I am really liking this, today's book notes were so easy to relate to as I read them it was easy to picture myself in them if that makes sense. In habit #1 the part on commitments really struck a chord with me as it feels like I am sometimes helping everyone else but myself.
    When I moved on to Habit #3 Putting Things First to see the word No wow it sure felt good to say it, no, no, no, no,no this will come in handy when I fill out the quadrant model for time management and begin to prioritize my time for myself.

  • jjteacher says:

    I like the section about commitments – I think often times we don't remember the commitments to ourselves as real commitments.

    I'm off to “Make an inventory of the commitments (I have )outstanding…and get on completing those.”

  • Sabir says:

    Have read the book before but review proved to be evn more useful since it all came russhing back and raised some much needed flags. i.e # 3 Put first things first, don't waste time and energy on unimportant things and identifying truly important things and living in Quadrant II (Important and not urgent) as well as # 5 Seek first to understand and than be understood. I will implement Abraham Lincoln's quote in all my dealings with my family and co-workers and eventually all I come into contact with. Thank you for providing a great product that is already making a differnece in my daily life.

  • The part of this note that spoke to me the most was in the Missions section. I have very good intuition and I am very good at following that intuition, however, I don't have a super strong sense of what my mission in life is. So I really appreciated Brian's thoughts on the matter.

    I learned a lot from the exercise to let the answers to “My specific mission in life is to…” When I started that exercise I got kinda scared and froze up actually. Must be a good exercise then huh?

    I do feel that it's a bit of an arduous process, and I'm grateful to have somebody who seems to be living his mission in life (Brian) say it is too!

    So here I am living in the question of what my mission in life is.

  • nathanagin says:

    i had gotten in late last night, and thought about skipping my exercise for today, but then i heard about honoring my commitments, and realized that it was very important to me, so i did it! thanks brian.

    i also realized that i spend much time in quadrant III – will be making my move to quadrant II, baby!

  • tinalroman says:

    Habit #3 – Seek first to understand, then to be understood falls right in line with the 3rd Agreement – Don't make assumptions from the 4 Agreements in yesterday's note. I had already decided to make it a habit to ask more questions to make sure I clearly understood what someone was telling me. I added on to make sure I also asked questions to make sure that I was clearly understood. That way there are no misunderstandings. Listened to the 7 Habits a number of years back (think before CDs, they're on cassette :-), I'm dating myself I know), this was a wonderful refresher and will listen to them again. I converted them to MP3s last year.

  • Aderet says:

    I wanted to experience the effects of what I read this morning on the 7 habits before posting today. First thing I found is that nearly everyone I shared with about the great teachings in Covey's book already knew about the book and said they read it 20 years ago. They seemed to think I was “behind the times” because I hadn't read it yet. What amazed me though is that none of these people were actually practicing what the book teaches. To me that was like putting millions of dollars in the bank and living like a begger” How could they know this powerful stuff, and yet be living their lives so weak? I determined I did not want this to happen to me, and so I am hoping I can put what I learn into practice diligently, so these powerful words won't be wasted on me.

  • Aderet says:

    The point about “responsibility – 'response – ability' – the ability to choose your response” was a biggee for me. “Highly proactive people recognize that responsibility. They do not blame circumstances, conditions, or conditioning for their behavior. Their behavior is a product of their own conscious choice, based on values, rather than a product of their conditions, based on feeling.”

    I love the thought of focusing my attention on my ability to respond to a situation. It takes the feeling of trying to control the situation away, and instead makes it more manageable because my response is always something I can control, but I can't feel confident of controlling anything else. I feel like I'm in charge of me now, and that's a wonderful thing for me to be in charge of, because frankly, I like being in charge of me..

  • Lincolnsmom says:

    What a great book! Am going to have to read it cover to cover eventually!
    Here are the main points that i took away from this pdf:
    1. Be response-able
    2. Get clear on what we want and then work backward from there
    3. Do first things first; its okay to say no if its for your bigger mission in life; efficiency is for time and effectivness is for the peeps
    4. create win/win energy in our lives and relationships instead of worrying bout our own positions
    5. understanding is more imptortant then being understood
    6. create synergy by working together
    7. take time to renew and refresh in oder to clear the mechanism and “sharpen the saw”

    What are my missions in life? Where do i see myself? I need to be asking myself these types of questions instead of worrying about where my life is and whats in the future and in my past (things i cannot change)….

    Thank you for this!

    4.

  • Big_Wave_Dave says:

    Hey there all you philosophy people. I hate to say this but this 7 habits thing is like Windows 95; way outdated. About 15 years ago Covey had certified trainers and our company paid big bucks to have them train us. When I took the 3 day seminar it was awesome and I agree that there are some gems in that system on teaching you how to achieve your goals.

    But here's my beef with this book. Essentially it's geared so you can be productive and get all kinds of good sh_t done, and get it done well. But now that I look at it from a different perspective it really is another tool this system threw at us to fuel the ever demanding world of productivity. The problem is most of the western world still shares the industrial revolution mentality of judging our worth by our contributions to growth and profits. And it's precisely the western world with it's machine (economic systems, political systems, educational systems, etc. etc.) that has taken the world to what is beginning to look like a new period of extinction. Although I have nothing against Covey per se, he really delivered and capitalized on what the system was really wanting; how to do this more effectively.

    Remember the movie Titanic, when there was mayhem on the deck while the ship was sinking and a group of musicians began playing a cheerful tune to help ease the panic. Well, I put this book in that music category. It was geared to teach us and entertain us on being more effective while our ship (Mother Earth) has begun to sink due to the structure of our modern lifestyles. I see no collective thought in that book, no spiritual insights, nothing that makes one realize “hey, this is great knowing how to learn to run faster and better, but am I (we) on the right road?” Regrettably, 80% of our original forests are gone along with a long laundry list of other things we've done to our world. So please forgive me but I just can't applaud a book that helped us and many organizations get there more efficiently.

    Sure we can argue that ideas in the book were only the how-to on being effective, but as you can tell I still have a bit of gripe with how perfectly its message was designed to fit into this warped system we've managed to create. Thanks for reading, I'm ready for all the boo's to my post :) peace, D

  • harshi says:

    Yoohoo..to completion of Day 2! I had flipped through the book many-many years ago, now I feel like re-visiting. Made notes of ideas while going through the note, and there are many to great ideas to choose from.

    The idea of beginning with the end in mind (regarding a “larger” purpose – I only have a vague idea of that end right now but hope to live with this question/introspect/help myself discover) and then lining up what I need to do to honor that vision is something I need to really start implementing. Eg. Becoming a healthier/fit me and stop putting off exercising (Quadrant 2!). It will add so much more clarity to the day once it's distilled to just the essential elements that advance us each day forward.

    The statement about being energetically weighed down by broken commitments made complete sense because I have lived it and I don't want to be that way. The diea of Roles and Goals was very helpful and I thought about the 1 thing I could do tomorrow at work that would make a difference.

    The funeral scene was also powerful. Thanks Brian for helping “feel” it. I felt it, and the first thing that came to my mind was me looking at myself…saying how much potential I carried to really live & enjoy life more, but which was never used to the best. It was sad and also inspirational.

    Thanks tonz Brian for getting all this together for us. It's a GREAT feeling to know there are so many of you out there participating and we are one big family. Was a nice motivating factor when I thought about that.

    Cheers!
    Harshi

    PS: Still need to go through all the great comments. So much to learn! Am excited.

  • Chazhill says:

    I am running a bit behind, I just finished the Four Agreements. I love the complexity of the simpleness of the agreements. Basic, to the point, but quite a challenge all rolled into four steps. I agree with the baby steps concept. Nothing was ever done fast that really lasts.

  • joannej says:

    Actions for Book 2: I will
    – Choose my response in all circumstances (proactive NOT reactive)
    – Spend time each day in Q2 (important & not urgent)
    – Look for a win/win in all interactions
    – Concentrate first on understanding rather than being understood
    – Sharpen the saw (do something for me) each day
    – Take the time to write: My specific mission in life is to…

    And like a lot of other people I have started a Six-Time Book which I will use to implement my list of actions.

  • mothwoman says:

    I endeeavored today to spend most of my time in Quadrant 2 despite a couple minutes in Quadrant 1. Like many others here I also read this book many years ago and found it very helpful, but never did the full exercise of the funeral comments.
    My biggest challenge today was to figure out how to get past my technologically challenged fear mind and figure out how to enter in to the discussions. I finally faced that dragon, as I could not sleep without finishing this commitment for the day.
    Great comments everyone!

  • Cori says:

    I want to clarify that this book is not just for or about business. I have notice a few comments where people have dismissed it as they are not interested in business. I found the 7 Habits to be more about integrity in all that you do and in all that you are – integrity with your word. That then spins out in to the various areas of your life. I highly recommend this book to anyone.
    I had the opportunity to learn from Dr Covey on 2 different occasions and he is the most admirable person I have ever met. The strength of his integrity ancommitment to family and service is evident in everything he says and does.
    My favourite quote used to sum up one of the habits was:
    Girta

  • Olukunle Alabetutu says:

    The four agreement is indeed like a cardinal points. The concept is a reminder of the day of my secondary school where there is a set point that is obtainable and the actual figure obtained. There is so much deviation in my personal life but this is a wake up call to high life.
    The seven habit is a classic it is written in the order of Napoleon Hill Book Think and Grow Rich. Response ability, begin with the end in mind, seek to understand before being understood. All these concept are noble. It is a revelation that i need to work on myself to be able to reach this high standard of living.
    In my Thinking a day is too short to really grab and master all these important stuff.

  • Reentje says:

    Having thumbed through “The 7 Habits…” some years back, there was not much I found applicable to my life at the time. And now, several years later, I find even less.

    The difference between me and the tenets of Mr. Covey is that to be “effective” my habits need to be more inner directed. I feel the term “Be Proactive”, has been used too many times in the past years and unfortunately, for me, brings the entire Bush administration to mind. Therefore I have come to feel uncomfortable with the term and have an immediate “run for the hills” reaction. “Responsiveness and responsibility” are not of the same root as “proactive and reactive”. Reacting and responding have similar meanings but have nothing in common with responsibility.

    Right now I am “actively” trying to make a “paradigm shift” (also an unpleasant term – along with “lifestyle”), but on the Dharma I believe that for me, it is not so good to “Begin with the End in Mind”. I like to take each day at a time and keep an open mind. As a retired, continuing scholar with at the moment very little to worry about, I am not too interested in or actively planning for the end of my path. I do know how it all truly will end and I have no fear of death (I am just a bit iffy about the dying….), but that is not what Covey means. However, I can reconcile this part of his book with “Be impeccable with your word”, and will leave it at that.

    Setting priorities – or “First things First” – of course is helpful and being efficient and effective, well I was in that mode all during my working life and now enjoy doing things a bit slower while standing at the kitchen sink and watching the chipmunks eating my tangelos. “Win/Win” is fine, but that's really not truly or always possible is it? Otherwise everybody would have enough to eat and a roof over his or her head.

    In summary, and without wanting to be disrespectful, I feel the book is a bit dated, and some of the sentiments have been expressed better, or in such a way that they are applicable to a wider audience.

    The most important lesson from the book, for me is: Habit 5: Seek First to Understand.

    “Tout comprendre c'est tout pardeonner”

  • NikhilRughani says:

    I've always found this book a challenge to read but the way you presented the video got me excited to give this another shot. I especially think “Sharpen The Saw” applies to my life right now, and something that I need to do more of.

    I think that if I implemented that one habit, my life would take a total 360, so starting as of tomorrow morning, I'll implement a bit of saw sharpening into my day.

  • tottish says:

    My no.1 inspiration from this book was about planning my life. I'm still not very good at it but at least I've realized that it's of utmost importance and I try to constantly improve my planning skills.

  • Eth_Jones says:

    Powerful book Powerful message Excellent Note

    “I believe that a life of integrity is the most fundamental source of personal worth.
    I do not agree with the popular success literature that says that self-esteem is
    primarily a matter of mind set, of attitude—that you can psych yourself into peace
    of mind. Peace of mind comes when your life is in harmony with true principles
    and values and in no other way.”

    Before I read this book maybe 5 months ago I was like that reacting not responding, wasting so much of my time playing computer games also watching TV (quadrent iv far to much time in here), allways driffting in and out of an exercise plan, and only a moderatly happy person.
    When I read this book I couldnt understand why so many people thought it was so good I thought it was just a liltle bit like wasting my time. but another part of me secretly craved what it was saying I think and that is probably why I finished the book. and after listning to and reading the note it was a great refresher and I have realised that the reason I was rejecting the book so much at the star was the face that I was unwilling to accept the fact that I was just Mucking around and not getting ahead in life was not willing to be responsible for my failures.
    the realisations have come slowly since then but looking now I have totaly revoluionised my life sart studying for my senior exams rather than just not caring. Beacem very intrestted in personal growth at first just understanding it and now applying it.I am now very Quadrent ii / sharpen the saw based. I play no more computer games fullstop as of nearly 2 months now even though it is the holidays so would normally spend most of my holidays doing this. I read non-fiction personal growth books everyday I exercise sixtimes a week. I mediate often and have taken to learning the guitar as it is something I really want to be able to do. as a result of living this new life I am happier than ever and feel more incontrol.

    Aristotle “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
    (Yesterdays Note)
    I also mean to implement react rather than respond into my life much more as this is key to controling our happiness and eventual outcomes.

    Love and Respect
    Ethan

    p.s Maybe this new passion is why i am still up at 1 reading comments gaining new insights and interacting with all you amazing peolple

  • Maninoa says:

    I found all the points helpful, and on second reading (via a few other authors), I find them again each worthy of meditation.

    The one I choose as most affecting is the 'funeral parlour values getter'. I'd heard about the importance of getting my values straight but couldn't quite figure out how to do it. Funeral parlour worked.

    I discovered that my #1 value is to be peaceful with all people. That really relaxed me, to know that my first priority and love is to be peaceful with people – that means y'all.
    I hope we learn more about refining our personal value systems. I'm happy with my #1, but I feel that my others need tweaking.

    :)

  • steveprior says:

    Okay… I admit it… Bought this book many years ago and did try to live by the wisdom according to Mr Covey. But like a lot of other books I have bought over time, I had completely forgotten about these 7 habits or have interpreted them badly.

    It's very easy to be Proactive but without responsibility we are kidding ourselves. Love the idea of Synergy and wish each and every business owner I have met over many years had learned it as well. Doing Joint Ventures is so incredibly easy and is common place on the web but not so much in the so called Bricks and Mortar world.

    A great reminder for me and much easier to review over 6 pages of notes and hearing it on an MP3 player.

    Thanks all

    Steve (A slighltly forgetfull 54 year old Brit watching the Snow fall outside)

  • DomDelimar says:

    What I got from today's (err… actually yesterday's ;)) revisit of this great note is that it's really time for me to actually start doing first things first. The decision is here. No more fooling around. No more 99%. Thanks Brian!

  • Luke says:

    I think the most important thing to me here is to work more on quadrant 2. How often in life do we get sucked in to doing all the meanial stuff first and then what's left is all we get for ourselves. Prioritise, prioritise, prioritise.
    The habit of synergy is quite amazing too.

    Do your very best ;)

  • gnath says:

    I was reintroduced to the 7 Habits a few weeks ago by Brian Johnson. Today as then, the importance of honoring your commitments resonated with me most strongly. It’s so important to do this to regain your peace. You can find a million good reasons for not being able to keep your word just yet, or how it’s no longer important, but you certainly forsake joy and happiness in the process. I am grateful for this timely reminder.

  • Brad says:

    I think I could spend the next year attempting to figure out my priorities. How do you figure out what is important to yourself? You need time to think. You need time without others pushing on you their priorities. Very difficult when you are not alone.

    Brian went to Bali. Without his goddess. Very smart in my opinion. You were able to choose when you will build relationships and when you will build yourself.

    As for the seven habits – I shall put this in my pile of books to read, review and contemplate on for the amount of time it takes to learn. The nice thing about life is there is really no hurry. Life goes on a the same speed regardless of the crises we create.

  • JeannetteS says:

    Again…committment spoke loud and clear to me while listening to the Audio. I see a theme here :) Habit #1 is the one habit that I know I need to do but have stopped myself from doing because honestly I don't 100% believe that I can make what I want happen and make it last. However I have noticed recently that the small steps I take (like starting my blog) have made me feel more confident and have even attracted people that are willing to help me. I need to prioritize and be clear…I find myself getting all excited over one of my ideas but then very quickly the “that won't work b/c…” thinking kicks in. Again goes back to having that unshakeable faith and not getting in my way!

    Loved the bamboo metaphor…reminded me of what my IntenSati instructor said about planting seeds and nourishing them to grow. When you see nothing happening you don't dig them up to see if they seeds are still there. That just delays the process. Have faith and believe in that what you want will happen.

    I feel my faith building up…THANK YOU!

  • aguculture says:

    The 7 Habits are such a great help, it's a great followup to The Four Agreements. I really love how covey lists the habits as proactive 'response-ability', begin with the end in mind, putting first things first, win/win, seek first to understand, synergy, and my favorite 'sharpen the saw'.

  • Annette says:

    I really wish I had been required to read this book 13 years ago when I first started my career as a COTA. I also think that this book should be required reading in High Schools if it is not already….
    My focus was always too engaged in quadrants 1 and 3, Quadrant 2? I think that in part it was an implied expectation from the employers to be as efficient and productive as possible (the expectations are very high in some workplaces) which, can be highly unrealistic at times in the health care field. Another aspect and a deep issue for me, was an inability to grasp the importance of quadrant 2 in my relationships with co-workers. I was so focused on performance and keeping my job, from a productivity standpoint, that I did my job too well and pissed off a lot of people in the process (unintentionally, I never did understand why I had so may issues with angry co-workers). I now understand why it is important to develop relationships in that way instead of being so busy doing my job that I don't acknowledge or show appreciation for others and then expect synergy to happen. My biggest challenge is going to be how to go about establishing those relationships. Very enlightened today….
    I see you……

  • Hey, I forgot to do my comment yesterday…

    The biggest thing for me on this note is having a clear vision. I didn't realize how I needed a vision for EVERYTHING in my life…not just big projects. When I started having a vision for even the tiniest details throughout my day, it made a HUGE difference!

  • BPAngel says:

    Coming in at the end but still finishing lol. playing catch up, will be caught up by tonight. Missed yesterdays comments, but wow Brian, talk about homing in on the issues I need to deal with…. haha thought I would have a gentle start ^ ^ Having been self developing for more years than I care to remember, :) but both books I have managed to avoid, hmmm now dealing with them I think I know why, wasn't ready to face the issues contained within, am doing now, with resistance lol,. Also made some cards and stuck them on the wall, am visual/kinesthetic so maybe using mindmaps whilst listening to the mp3s I think would help me retain the understanding, the essence more easily. Has anyone else used mindmaps?

    Felt a little weak and vulnerable today, after a heady buzzing start yesterday, been arguing and debating inside my head, that could be because i have been slapped in the face with a wet wake up fish, the biggest wall to scale first or the fact that I have just given up nicorette at the same time, lol maybe not such a good idea, having a problem concerntrating… I think todays book will help, stop worrying, start living, ol that will probably stop my brain ruminating.

    Apply day50 challenge magic dust, and off I fly to the next page….. it will be ok, you just have to believeeeee….whheeeeee :D Rocket set on thurst…….. go Roz go Roz…… momentum gained….. cut engine….. raises the sail…. hmm and away we go….beaut view from up here……

    Some great comments guys, there are so many its difficult to read them all, and I really didnt want to miss any. So mega wow at everyones posts, its an honour to be with you all. Namaste…. L&L…. Roz

  • bstebbings says:

    I first read this book in the mid 1990s and have reveiwed it a number of times since then. It was interesting to reveiw the main concepts and relate them to my life currently. I am amazed how many of the concepts I have internalized. For instance, I use the terms "sharpen the saw" and "first things first" on a daily basis without even thinking about where or when I first learned them. It is also interesting to review some parts of the concepts that I have not yet internalized. For instance, I don't fully live in the second quadrant. I therefore resolve to renew my commitment to spend more time doing quadrant 2 activities, especially in areas that concern my relationships with family and friends. Thank you Brian , for another awesome PhilosophersNotes.

  • Kristil says:

    The important things from me that I remember from this note: Commitments – like yesterday, making a list of them and seeing which I want to have and which not. Being “response able”, proactive. “Sharpening my saw”, and doing the quadrant 2 activities – I'll try to remember these! I think I'll start with these :) So I'll do some exercising and some meditation now :D

  • Waltww says:

    The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People stands out in my mind as one of the most influential books within our 50 we are reviewing. Most books whether I actually read the original or just read Brian's summary would lead me to review the principles or emphasized ideas when commenting on them. But 7 Habits is very different because not only did I read Brian's PDF notes, not only did i read and study the book—I also practiced learning the very new habits it recommended. I talked about the book at Toastmasters. I made quadrant charts till they were cluttering my house. And I worked on knowing my values, my goals and my missions so that I could honor those aspects of myself as I strived to life and grow. I still live this book 15 years since I read it.

  • Cathy B says:

    Just getting this on because I am having some problem with my computer. Great second day. Lots of things to really give some deep thought to. No more feet dragging. Now is the time. The funeral thing I have already done. My husband and I both, we have talked about it and even talked to our kids about it and none of it has to do with a funeral or us laying in a casket. It has to do with the people we love celebrating our life and then getting on with theirs. Keep it coming. I have needed these wake up calls for a long time!

  • oxygen says:

    I am a teacher and we use the 7 habits as the basis of our character education. It has reduced office detentions, counsellor referrals, and even increased test scores. It is hard work to live by, but it has had a significant impact on my professional and personal life.

  • Hello again, fellow Champions! The 7 Habits material is definitely amazing stuff. No doubt about that. I'll be briefer this time around ^____^. I dig the Pavlov's Dog connection. Many, many individuals tend to swim with the current [salivate when they hear the bell, so to speak]. We are programmed that way, but I would very much prefer the ability to choose my response to stimuli. That makes me feel much more like a human, and less domesticated, perhaps? But that's just me, right? As for the second habit, I have come across many variations of the funeral exercise prior to reading these notes;it seems to be "in" to ponder one's eulogy. But it is powerful, nonetheless. I'll be sure to take time out to try that within the next couple of days. It'll be a bit harder for me considering I'm still a few months from 20, but it's never to early to consider my death, hehe.

  • The idea of the four Quadrants was the most interesting bit, to me that is. I like the reinvention of the XY [male/female] quadrant technique used to predict the sex of an unborn child. [We covered that back in high school chemistry..lovely *sarcasm* memories there ^____^] Hit the target with the “Roles & Goals” [amazing way to test one's sanity, by the way] And who said 'just saying no' was merely for the obvious cases? I would love to spread a bit of no around to many aspects of my life which detract from my ability to actually l.i.v.e. it. ;] The fourth and fifth habit I'll skip over for the sake of space and time, but the sixth is yet another spiritual math lesson: now, 1 + 1 = 3 plus! Just when you thought you had addition down, here comes synergy a'knockin'! I have always believed in this in some form or other; it's nice to see it proudly displayed. Oh, and sharpen your saw folks! Remember the saying, “(s)he ain't the sharpest tool in the shed?” No more dullness for us, fellow champions. Claim your sharpened selves! [I know I am! ^___^]

  • aeryck says:

    This was such a great note. 7 Habits was about the first personal development book I ever read back in about 1996 and it changed me completely. For the first time, I was able to investigate my own thought processes and pay attention to the difference between my values and behavior. It kicked off my path in a major way. The quote on Integrity still blows me away. I truly think Integrity is the most important attribute a human being can cultivate.

  • […] The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R Covey […]

  • Sandy says:

    I really love each of the 7 habbits. And Brian's notes are very reader friendly, inspiring, and humerous. One question here: for the example of Funeral under the habbit of 2) Begin With the End in Mind. I think it might be that proper. The original meaning of that habbit is to visualize the “end result” you want to achieve with a crystal clear vision. That funeral example has some other meaning in it besides this “end of your life”, which is what you would like the people you care talking about you. Does this conflict with the “agreement” we had on Day one ” you are totally indepandent from what other people say or think”

    My point is: if you really do your mission for what you mean to do with your divine destination (I do believe), people will have good comments on you after you die and rememeber you, but this might happen many years after you die, you could be misunderstood for many years…so using what other people would say about you at your funeral might not be a good influencial factors on what you should do with your one-time life. Any comments on it?

    Thanks,

    Sandy

  • katin4 says:

    I haven't read this book in over a decade, and I was surprised again at the powerful contents and concepts.

    It was the quadrant-grid of what's important that was the most impactful for me… I could tell partly because I didn't want it to be. That's usually a sign I should take a deeper look.

    I think the grid helps clarify or balance the way our brains tend make decisions around what is important. There are some areas that confuse or fool our usual computing of costs, benefits, odds and time. These same kinds of miscalculated decisions are one of the core concepts in the "Freakonomics" book. When that old lizard brain is stimulated (by emotion, danger, etc.), minor things can seem huge and huge things can seem so far off and lower priority.

    I do think I have been missing priority on a few of the important things. So I picked something that I should have done a long time ago in support of a relationship with an old friend and teacher, and I did that instead of jumping into the whirl of need-to-be-done work tasks of the day. It wasn't a hard choice – my neglect of this relationship has been nagging me in the background for a while now. It didn't take long to do – maybe 90 mins.

    It felt great to get it done. A couple of other things slipped off the list of checked-off, though, and I'm in a mild panic about them. So far, nothing has blown up, so I'll just keep in the moment, keep looking around, keep plugging away, and keep seeing that it's okay.

    The whole thing bumped me off center enough that I am posting this comment 2 days late and I still have to finish reading yesterday's PN. None the less, I'm in great appreciation for the opportunity to stay in it, be bumped of center, and practice getting re-centered and managing it all. :) Thank you Brian and PN challenge buddies!

  • squinn says:

    Wow, so much knowledge in this book. The principles that really stick out in my mind that I'd like to improve on are “Begin With the End In Mind” and “Put First Things First”. I like how Covey rally stresses character development. If you really focus on the big picture and doing the small things with great intentions, the results will take care of themselves. I find that when I lose track of my main goals, I start to revert back into old habits of procrastination and laziness. Putting energy and thought into what we want to accomplish and how we want to accomplish it is really the first step in the process of growth and development. I also like the idea of “sharpening your saw”. It seems like in this day and age, it is very easy to get caught up and busy ourselves in mundane day-to-day activities. With the growth of the internet, social networking, reality tv, etc., it is very easy to become distracted and take away time from what really is important in our lives. Putting time into yourself keeps you centered, lets you enjoy the “now” moment and I believe pays great dividends in the long run.

  • Another Amazing book. I have read it a couple of times it is marked up sticky note tabs hangin out work in progress book. I love these notes they are helpful, insightful, and break it down into a fast easy to implement format.

  • Lucky Frederico says:

    I had never looked at being proactive as meaning,” to be responsible for the things that I had commited to myself and to others” and which I didn't really feel that I needed to actually see to the end,I did not pay attention to my commitments to others nor to my dreams. I can see where doing so would have made a difference in my life. I can now see myself through the eyes of others as to what I must really be like. I can accomplish much more by placing my priorities in what matters most for myself and have learned to to understand others prior to having to be understood.I have always believed that every encounter with another human being should benefit both of us , though this is a good reminder for failing at times to do the same.I like the idea of begining with the end in mind. only in the idea of knowing what I seek to accomplish will I develop my plan. My goal, or target, must be in plain sight before me , always reminding me of my intent.I must always remember to include others in my decisions, for I can accomplish most with our combined synergy. I believe in exercise. I walk eight miles daily because it keeps me healthy and also give me time to clear my mind and constantly renew my vision. I will be seventy years young in a few months. I enjoy my life . My lady and I love to dance. ( check out 'dancing with Lucky and Belia ” on you tube

  • Peter says:

    Hi Everyone! This quote is my “aha” !!! I have read this book but maybe missed the point until reading again in this PhilosophersNote. It hit me like WHAM!

  • emilierocket says:

    I realize that my commitments to myself are harder to keep than when it's about or for someone else…
    interesting isn't it!? is there a root belief here, not good enough or something similarly sabotaging my numerous commitments, I defenitly have a challenge with the pro-active part,
    maybe fear of rejection ,
    I did have a past life memory of being burned as a witch in the middle-age…. ;) hard to get over it !!! ;) ahahah!
    I'm being cautious this time!!!!! keeping a low profile…ahahahah !!! Thank you I'm actually getting a good laugh out of it! :)
    more to come , im not done with day 2 , but thats it for today! (day 7 already… argh! constance… argh!
    2nd on my TO BE list!! :)

  • edlaurs says:

    man…sharpen the saw dude (me)…get into Quadrant II…
    Honouring commitments was a biggie. Having integrity. I am being very very ruthless now with my agreements to do things. Rather than just sayong yes I am considering it and feeling if this is right for me. Thanks B and Dr Covey!

  • emilierocket says:

    it took me 3 days to finish this note… and I'm inspired to read the book,
    but beyond getting more ideas/knowledge/books, I felt the spark of realising how commitments and taking ideas/thougts into the matter constantly are so essential to achieve any kind of great results;
    great results require great commitments, that's it huh!?…no going around it. hah,…
    it feels good actually, 100% response able!
    let's keep that now! :)

  • Dipankar says:

    I'm going to sound silly but I never got around to reading this book. Thanks to Brian, I know the big ideas and my desire to read it has been ignited.

    The number one thing that I got out of this note is to put first things first. I'm going to follow the quadrant and focus on the “Important” and “Not Urgent” Quadrant II.

    Thanks again Brian for the awesome notes…

  • Keshab says:

    I have been adviced by my boss to read this book, 7 habbits of highly effective people now I am ready to go for it as I knew so many things through this blog.

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