Steven Covey, one of the all time greatest pioneers of personal development, leadership and productivity has recently passed away on July 16 2012. He will forever be remembered through his teachings and wise wisdom.
One of the first books I’ve ever read several years ago was the book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. I even recommended the book in a blog post here.
I must say that that book was one of the books that had a tremendous impact on my life which has taught me many principles and foundations I still use today.
One of the most memorable stories mentioned in that book was in the early chapter of defining your life as if you were writing your eulogy. That chapter really opened my mind and made me wonder what exactly I want to achieve with my life. He also spoke about the Steven Covey Time Management Matrix which is a sensational way of organising your time.
No longer I fancied doing the things that other people wanted me to do or expected me to do, if it didn’t fit my paradigm, then I wouldn’t do it. Destiny was in my control.
Another fantastic story Steven Covey talks in his book are “The Big Rocks” in life.
The Big Rocks
In life, we have so many things that we must do. We must respond to emails, we need to take those phone calls, we have meetings, we need to see our family, spend time with the kids, work on our health, spiritual and more.
However, as a common example, many people tend to do the things that are not really important in their lives and neglect the most important things. The non important things in our lives are the grains of sand and yes, we have a lot of them.
Steven Covey provides an excellent example of this through using a jar as an example.
If you were to separate the most important areas of your life such as spending time with your spouse, big opportunities, sharpening the saw, health etc, these would be the big rocks. Each of those rocks are big.
All those other areas of your life are the grains of sand. There’s a lot of it. If we were to pour all of the sand into the jar, which represents our life, we would fill it up close to the top of the jar.
Then if we were to try and put all of the big rocks into the jar after when we’ve poured the sand into the jar, we’ll find it extremely difficult to fit them all in.
There goes the moral of the story, you can not fit the most important parts of your life if it’s filled with non important activities.
However, if you were to try a different paradigm and put all the big rocks into the jar first, then you’ll find that you can easily fit them all in. You’ve covered all the most important areas of your life and then, only then, you pour in all the other grains of sand which will easily fill up in between the big rocks.
Moral of the story is.
Focus on the big rocks first.
Here’s a great video from Steven Covey demonstrating this.
Let’s all focus on the big rocks first.
Good Journey and Rest In Peace Mr Steven Covey.