Thursday, September 13, 2012



How valuable are you for being the best tree cutter in the wrong forest?

In his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey describes powerful habits of effective people. Stephen passed away recently but his legacy will live on for centuries to come. I read his book 21 years ago and by applying just the first two of his principles I benefited greatly. Knowledge per se is of no value if we don’t apply it. It is the application of knowledge that will give results in life. Take the following 7 habits to heart, apply them and your life will drastically improve. Thank you for all your teachings Stephen. I know you are in heaven now enjoying your rewards for a lifetime dedication to make millions of people better human beings.

1) Be Proactive. The secret to life is found in the seconds between stimulus and response. Respond instead of reacting. Responsibility is the ability to respond. All your power lies within you. Learn, act, take charge of your life. Life this powerful habit and grow your circle of influence.

2) Begin with the end in mind. All things are created twice; first mental, then physical creation. Have written mission, vision, and purpose statements. Your statements served as a center for guidance in life.

3) Put first things first. Focus more on the important few and less on the urgent many priorities in your life. Doing the right things is more important than doing things right. Focus more on results and less on output and activities.

4) Think win/win. Winners focus on win/win or no deal. Have consideration and courage and do little things well consistently. Keep all your commitments especially those you make to yourself. Be the first to apologize, learn the lesson and move on.

5) Seek first to understand then to be understood. Be empathetic, not sympathetic. Diagnose before prescribing. Learn from all your reflections, observations, and failures.

6) Synergize. High trust is earned. Surround yourself with people smarter and different than you. Find and listen to a good mentor.

7) Sharpen the saw. Seek continuous education and wisdom. Define what you want out of life, learn all you can, commit to your dreams, and take the required actions to achieve your dreams. Go from dependent to independent to interdependent.

Be blessed and a blessing to others
Carlos Fontana, President of Phalanx

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