::reading:: 7 Habits for Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
So…I’ve been going through this book, the seven habits one that you always think about with this crazy stigma, putting it in the same category as upper-level businessmen, palm pilots, BMW, dry cleaners, stuffy board rooms, you know…all the stuff that typifies our American picture of an uppity business person.
But really, it’s great stuff! I’m serious! My dad turned me on to it. And, ever since, I’ve been reading this stuff, digesting it, trying to implement it into my life. You know, I’ve been reading it for my devotions it’s so good! OK, just kidding…but still, if you get the chance, it’s a great read. Good principles. And, apart from popular thought, it is NOT directed exclusively towards your uppity business bigot. If anything, I would have to say that he has done an extraordinarily good job of really just pointing it towards your run-o-the-mill soccer mom, over-stressed college student, factory-working dad, aspiring cosmetologist…you name it. It really is what he claims it to be just “powerful lessons” to make you a “highly effective person”. ‘Nuff said.
But there is one thing that is such a nugget of gold (it’s what he bases all of his time-management stuff on) that I just have to share it with the world.
He calls it, the Time Matrix (wooo-ooo-ooo)!!! and it goes like this:
In Quadrant One, you have those things that are Urgent and Important…like a changing a dirty diaper, answering the phone, paying the cell phone bill that was due yesterday, dealing with your computer when it just crashed and a paper is due first thing in the morning, or calling your mom when she’s mad at you!
Quadrant Two: contains only those things that are important, but not urgent. Say, spending time with the family, reading a good book, changing your oil, or calling your dad. (ahem, pardon the sarcasm, please!)
Quadrant Three: then hits us with those urgent things that really aren’t important. You know, seeing that movie cause it’s the last night it’s in the theatre, interruptions, pressing matters, or your boss walking in and wanting to chat. (again, ahem)
Quadrant Four: is full of stuff that is neither urgent nor important. It’s fluff. It’s watching TV, playing Xbox, surfing the net (shame on you), basically, chillin’ like a villain!
So…after all that, the goal is to live in Quadrant II (there I said it!); effectively taking care of important things before they become urgent. A person living in Quadrant II will prioritize and eliminate those things that keep them from actually doing those thing that need to be done. To quote the author,
“Quadrant II is the heart of effective personal management. It deals with things that are not urgent, but are important. It deals with things like building relationships, long-range planning, exercising, preventive maintenance, preparation – all those things we know we need to do, but somehow seldom get around to doing, because they aren’t urgent.
“What one thing could you do in your personal and professional life that, if you did on a regular basis, would make a tremendous positive difference in your life? Quadrant II activities have that kind of impact. Our effectiveness takes quantum leaps when we do them.”
I just finished listening to a session of this stuff on CD. The challenge was given to implement all this stuff by-the-book for 21 days and see how it works. Give it three weeks, they say, and it will change the way you live forever. You know I actually believe them.
So, with that in mind, I pose the question to myself: “What will I now do?”
I’m going camping! I’m gonna live in a Quadrant IV world for a few days. I’m gonna do absolutely nothing unless it happens to suit my fancy…including rolling out of bed at 10 a.m.!