Steven R. Covey – You Will Be Missed
Steven R. Covey was born in 1932, a time in our history where people knew what hardship and hard work was. He emerged years later to become one of the most influential Americans and writers. His book, “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,” sold more than 20 million copies in 38 languages. Steven formed the FranklinCovey Co, a company that focused on leadership, strategy and individual effectiveness.
Steven R. Covey was an inspiration to millions, yet millions more probably never even heard of Steven. I thought I would delve into his 7 habits and show you how you can apply them to your fitness, health and wellness goals.
Independence or Self-Mastery
The First Three Habits surround moving from dependence to independence (i.e., self mastery):
Habit 1: Be Proactive
Take initiative in life by realizing that your decisions (and how they align with life’s principles) are the primary determining factor for effectiveness in your life. Take responsibility for your choices and the consequences that follow. If your’re living an unhealthy lifestyle, be proactive and change it. Make the decision today and do something about it.
Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind
Self-discover and clarify your deeply important character values and life goals. Envision the ideal characteristics for each of your various roles and relationships in life. Create a mission statement. If your goal is to loose weight, determine how much you want to loose. If your goal is to run faster than you ever have, decide how fast that is.
Habit 3: Put First Things First
Prioritize, plan, and execute your week’s tasks based on importance rather than urgency. Evaluate whether your efforts exemplify your desired character values, propel you toward goals, and enrich the roles and relationships that were elaborated in Habit 2. Simply put, organize your life’s efforts. Too many people run around in a daze without a game plan. They decide they want to be on a diet, but fail weeks later because they simply don’t have a plan for achieving success. It isn’t complicated. Write it down, prioritize your list based on importance and then implement it.
The next three have to do with Interdependence (i.e., working with others):
Habit 4: Think Win-Win
Genuinely strive for mutually beneficial solutions or agreements in your relationships. Value and respect people by understanding a “win” for all is ultimately a better long-term resolution than if only one person in the situation had gotten his way. I truly love win/win, when it is possible. Everyone walks away happy. This can be accomplished by involving others in your quest for fitness, health and wellness . Not only will they support you, but they will also benefit by learning with you and possibly participating in goals that you share in common.
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood
Use empathic listening to be genuinely influenced by a person, which compels them to reciprocate the listening and take an open mind to being influenced by you. This creates an atmosphere of caring, respect, and positive problem solving. Listing is so important, but not just listing to others. Listen to your body and the ques it gives. Learn how it reacts to various loads and foods. The greatest athletes in the world know what their bodies can do, they listen to it and sometimes they push past what seems impossible to achieve even greater feats. I love to surround myself with athletes and people who I feel will empower me to achieve greater results in whatever I choose. I listen to them and try to learn from their experiences.
I also have seen quite a few people go way over board on fitness, not listening to those around them and as a result not being understood.
Habit 6: Synergize
Combine the strengths of people through positive teamwork, so as to achieve goals no one person could have done alone. Get the best performance out of a group of people through encouraging meaningful contribution, and modeling inspirational and supportive leadership. I find it extremely beneficial to get with a group when trying to achieve new goals in fitness, health and wellness. Start a diet group or join a running group or a book club that reads fitness books. There are endless possibilities. Be creative and have fun.
The Last habit relates to self-rejuvenation:
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw
Balance and renew your resources, energy, and health to create a sustainable, long-term, effective lifestyle. It primarily emphasizes on exercise for physical renewal, prayer (meditation, yoga, etc.) and good reading for mental renewal. It also mentions service to the society for spiritual renewal. Fitness, health and wellness is a life style, not something that should come and go. Reflect on what is working and what is not. Learn from your mistakes and others. Learn from your successes and how to duplicate those successes to achieve new goals and new levels for yourself.
Check out the Steven R. Covey website for more information.