It's my life!

Hooked on Stephen Covey’s ‘First Things First’: Are you efficient but ineffective?

I’m going to buy this book. It is essential for me to reclaim my life.

Since early this year, I’ve been running everywhere, everytime. From classes to group meetings, I have had project deadlines, papers to write, events to organise, residential duties etc. Essentially, the more I did to pursue my idea of success, the more I sidelined my friends and myself, becoming more unhappy and more stressed.

Stephen Covey, in his book, tells us the difference between being effective and efficient. I might have been an efficient worker (coordinating events and website matters on my own) and an efficient student (leading project groups and earning my As and A+), but have I been effective in living the life I wanted? Considering that after everything, I’m asking “What’s the point? Am I happy now?” And considering I our on weight due to the stress, I highly doubt it.

Through this book, it promises that we will learn to delegate without losing control, rediscover our power and passion, and how to lead our lives, among other things. Considering my experiences of putting too many responsibilities upon my shoulders, I have a very good feeling that this book might have a transformational effect on my life.

Proof for this strong statement? In page 38, Covey ends his explanation of his Time Management Matrix, dividing activities of our lives to four major quadrants.

Quadrant I are urgent and important matters such as crises, and deadlines, which could have been avoided with proper planning. Quadrant II is not urgent but important for a good quality of life such as relationships, learning and empowerment, which is often neglected for Quadrant I or worse, Quadrant III.

Quadrant III are matters that are urgent but not important. They are usually distracting interruptions such as phone calls, meetings which we think fall into Quadrant I but not really. The last quarter is Quadrant IV, both unimportant and not urgent. His description of Quadrant IV, is amusing, horribly realistic and sad, and I’ll quote it here.

“This is the Quadrant of Waste. Of course, we really shouldn’t be there at all. But we get so battle-scarred from being tossed around in Quadrants I and III that we often escape to Quadrant IV for survival. What kinds of things are in Quadrant IV? Not necessarily recreational things because recreation in the true sense of re-creation is a valuable Quadrant II activity. But reading addictive light novels, habitually watching mindless television shows, or gossiping around the water fountains at the office would qualify as Quadrant IV time wasters. Quadrant IV is not survival; it’s deterioration.”

I’m definitely buying this book.

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2 thoughts on “Hooked on Stephen Covey’s ‘First Things First’: Are you efficient but ineffective?

  1. Pingback: Utilizing Scarcity in the Four Quadrant Value Universe | OnTheSpiral « Serve4Impact

  2. Pingback: Best Business Quotes

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