Ok, after a seven month layoff I figured now would be a good time to pick up my discussion of Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. If you weren’t following along last Spring, you may not know that Habit 1 is: Be Proactive. In short, that means: “You have free will (in the full libertarian sense of the word) so use it. Do something. No excuses.” Habit 2 is: Begin with the End in Mind. This one is sort of about goal setting but it is also about metaphysics and mapping out existence for ourselves and trying to decide where we actually fit in the universe and where we intend to end up (whether in this life or past it). Now we’re on to Habit 3: Put First Things First. (more…)
No, I haven’t forgotten that I started a series of posts on Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. We’re on to Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind. I mentioned in the introductory post of this series that I think this is the hardest of the 7 Habits to pull off correctly. I actually think the difficulties associated with this habit are what cause many people to throw in the towel on the whole 7 Habits model. Further, I think that Covey does not (perhaps can not) provide enough assistance and guidance on this habit in the book. (more…)
A simple way to understand paradigms is to see them as maps. We all know that “the map is not the territory.” A map is simply an explanation of certain aspect of the territory. That’s exactly what a paradigm is. It is a theory, an explanation, or model of something else. … In the more general sense, it’s the way we “see” the world — not in terms of our visual sense of sight, but in terms of perceiving, understanding, interpreting.
(Stephen R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, 23)
The first of Stephen Covey’s famous 7 Habits is: Be Proactive. Heavily using jargon words like “proactive”, “synergy” and “paradigm” is one of the things that gets Covey snarked for his 7 Habits model. And I suppose he probably deserves to get snarked for pushing such words on us all. It reminds me of a line from the recent movie Kung Pow: Enter the Fist (a movie that is hideously bad but also painfully funny — you just gotta rent it):
Chosen One: Killing is wrong. And bad. There should be a new, stronger word for killing. Like badwrong, or badong. Yes, killing is badong. From this moment, I will stand for the opposite of killing: gnodab.
In the summer of 1989 I was in the Missionary Training Center preparing to ship off to Tennessee for my mission. Before entering the MTC I had heard tales of MTC-wide meetings where members of the First Presidency or Quorum of the Twelve would address the missionaries. Imagine my surprise and dismay when the speaker for our large group meeting was some Mormon guy hawking his newly published book…
That author was Stephen Covey and his new book was called The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. (more…)