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Covey seven habits

How to Live the Seven habits of Highly Effective People

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How to Live the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

“Out of chaos come all great things in our lives!” – Steven Covey

Steven Covey’s book, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, is one of the all time best selling self-help books. Each Habit is like an ice-berg in that there is far more below the surface of the words.

Living the Covey Seven Habits is a challenge to all of us. One of the best ways to understand a topic is to study the opposite – I have included an explanation of both EFFECTIVE and ineffective people for each of the Covey seven habits.


Effective People

Ineffective People


1 Be proactive

Effective People Take control & internalise that we are responsible for our lives – who we are, where we are & what we have.

Ineffective People Feel the environment, situation, family, boss and so on control them and they can do little to change this.

List 2 results you have achieved by being proactive.


List 2 areas in your life where you could be more proactive and take proactive action for each

2 Begin with the end in mind

Effective People are VERY clear about what we want & what is important.

Ineffective People drift through life, never stopping to think “what is my ultimate destination in life?”

Describe/MindMap what you would do & what would be important and how you would feel if you had more money than you could spend in a life-time!

3 First things first

Effective People Spend time planning to ensure we are taking action on things that are important in getting us to our destination  defined by Habit 2

Ineffective People react to “urgency”, such as phones, email and ad hoc events.  Usually in this mode they spend a lot of time “putting out fires”

Spend 1 hour today listing & prioritising the tasks for this week that will help you get to your Habit 2 destination.

4 Think Win-Win

Effective People Recognise others are important too.  Our outcomes should benefit ourselves AND others. Believe in abundance – there IS plenty for everyone.

Ineffective People want to Win.  They consider that there is a finite “pie” & need to beat others to get their piece. OR  they just give-in as it is too hard for stand up for what I want (lose-win).

Set a context for your next meeting to create a win-win outcome.  After the meeting take 10 minutes to write down how the meeting flowed and if there was anything different happening.

5 Seek first to understand & then to be understood

Effective People Genuinely want to understand & accept others.  Actively listen, clarify & get agreement.  THEN communicate our agenda.

Ineffective People focus on their needs.  They talk much more than listen.  Interrupt & Judge others.

Select another meeting and set the context to REALLY understand others.  Re-state their points tho their satisfaction

6 Synergise

Effective People know the whole is far greater the sum of the parts

Ineffective People want others to agree with their ideas. They feel they are “right”.

Make a time to create/build something with a child. Notice how you feel.

7 Sharpen the Saw

Effective People Plan & invest time & money to develop ourselves physically, mentally & spiritually.

Ineffective People let their mind, body & soul gradually diminish.

Book time for an activity that will develop YOU – Such as a FREE trial coaching session!

The Covey seven habits can help us to be much more effective. It does take effort and discipline. Keep this chart in sight for a month as a reminder you want to improve and live the Covey seven habits.

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