For the second Week now, we are going through Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. Today’s special is:
Habit 2 : Begin with the end in mind.
The author suggest that we visualise ourselves at the end of our life and ask ourselves :
« What kind of person do I want my friends, family, partner, coworkers, children, neighbours, to see in me ? »
« What impressions do I want to leave of me ? »
« In which way do I want to impact the lives of those around me ? »
« What of my character do I want them to know and keep when I’m not here anymore ? »
The idea here is that if we know where we are going, then it helps us better understand where we are right now. For that, we need to find what is deeply important for us, our personal purpose in life. Our life purpose needs to meet a few key factors.
Those are the things which help us achieve a balanced life. It is a matter of where we put our priorities. Where does our sense of security lie ? Is it on money, career, family, success, beauty, fame, social status, marriage, God, image, etc. ? Do we need guidance ? How can we find wisdom ? How do we express and use our inner power ?
Regarding the priorities of our life, let me share a little story that I love a lot.
A teacher wanted to make its students reflect on what is important in life, so he decided that he wouldn’t use a long speech but instead he submitted them to a small experiment. He put a bowl in front of each student, on the side there were big stones, sand, small stones, water, and he asked them to fill the bowl with everything on the table. He didn’t tell the students how to proceed and wanted to see how they would do it. They all seemed to agree on the fact that they could never put all of the elements in the bowl. He asked them to stop and Watch him. He started by putting the big rocks in the bowl, then the smaller ones, then he put the sand, and finally he put the water, and everything went in the bowl. He said, life is like this bowl, if you want everything to fit in it, you need to fill it with the most important things first, and there will Always be room for the smaller aspects. This is a summary, I hope you get the idea.
Everybody lives according to certain principles, whether we are conscious or not. They can be designed by us or passed to us by our family. When someone lives according to their principles, their life is more fulfilling, successful, and meaningful. This implies that we think of what principles we value the most, (respect, honor, hard work, love, etc.)
Another aspect of this habit is to identify the different roles we embody Everyday and set goals for these roles. As a child for my parents, what are my goals ? As a Professional, partner, parent, friend, etc.
I hope this will help you figure out what is most important in your life, and to help you design your life purpose. Let me know your thoughts on this.
Let’s take care of ourselves.
See you around !