Eight habits of highly effective people (part one)

April 23, 2021by Shirley Palmer0

What is it that most people want in life? I think the answer is to be happy with added success. However how many people chase the outward success of homes, cars, holidays, things rather than mastering oneself? Have you thought about it? Is that you? I believe it is only by mastering ourselves that we can truly find the happiness and success combined.

If for example, we look at one of the great books from the 80’s – Stephen Covey’s ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’ we are reminded of seven key principles that will help you transform your life. This book which has sold over 25 million copies and maybe almost 30 years old is still a great game changer in helping you shift your life and business.

Here is a brief written summary as a reminder of the powerful tools and as you will see I have added an eighth habit which I believe which will support you even further.

Habit one – be proactive

So, what does it mean to be proactive? The answer I believe here is to recognise your responsibility in all aspects of life. Allowing yourself to see that you can be less reactive, more emotionally aware, and intelligent and choosing consciously how you respond in every situation.

“Emotional intelligence is a way of recognising, understanding, and choosing how we think, feel, and act. It shapes our interactions with others and our understanding of ourselves. It defines how and what we learn; it allows us to set priorities; it determines most of our daily actions. Research suggests it is responsible for as much as 80 percent of the “success” in our lives.”

J. Freedman

By being more emotional aware you will see how you can be more proactive and be more responsible no matter what challenges life throws at us.

Habit two – begin with the end in mind

By recognising that everything starts with a thought and utilising our imagination before it is created it is imperative to be crystal clear about what we want before we create it as our reality.

Consider it to be akin to the building blocks for any project whether it is a business plan, a home, a car, a new product. First you must start with the basics, the blueprints, the ideas and believe me planning your life is no different.

It is key to be clear on the end goals and to take the daily steps to move in that direction to achieve your ideals.

“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. Our effectiveness takes quantum leaps when we do them.” 

Stephen R. Covey

Habit three – put first things first

How do you normally spend your day? Do you spend time and energy doing stuff that really isn’t that important?  Covey refers to putting ‘first things first’ and I would say do your ‘MIT’s’ (most important tasks) first.


By focusing on what is truly deemed important as opposed to the perception of what is urgent you will move into more productivity rather than being stuck in crisis mode which typically over time will lead to stress, burnout and feeling out of control.

By spending quality time on your MIT’s, you will be more focused on planning, setting up systems, strategies, and goal setting. In turn this will lead to a better long-term perspective, few crises, control, and better growth.

Make sure you don’t allow distraction to take over and/or interruption by others. Stay focused on the tasks at hand.

Consider over the next 24 hours or week to assess where you spend the most of your time, you might surprise yourself. Up-level your focus and see the amazing results. Learn to say no.

“A ‘No’ uttered from deepest conviction is better and greater than a ‘Yes’ merely uttered to please, or what is worse, to avoid trouble.” 

Mahatma Gandhi

Plant your crystal-clear priorities firmly in your mind and heart and the how will always appear.

Habit four – think win/win

The idea of win/win is a simple one. However, do you approach every relationship business or personal in this manner? Or are you someone who is always focused on the winning?

I encourage you to start thinking about how we can truly create a win/win energy in our lives daily.

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”

Helen Keller

What relationship can you focus on today, right here and now, to improve and make it a win/win for your both? Helping others and having no apparent motive is a powerful way to consider collaboration.

“What do we live for, if it is not to make life less difficult for each other?”

George Eliot

Thinking about the current scenarios where you feel you need to address any of these four habits? Still in need of some added advice and guidance – then book in a Genius Zone Consult to discover what your current challenges are and explore how I can support you in solving those challenges.


Lastly, remember this is your life – what do you want to feel more of? Fulfilment, excitement, joy, happiness, success.



Shirley Palmer

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Copyright by Shirley Palmer. All rights reserved.

Copyright by Shirley Palmer. All rights reserved.