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The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

This excellent book describes and illustrates valuable principles for living.  I'll say more about it later — regarding a Golden Rule with Empathy and more — but for now...

You can get an overview of the main ideas with summaries (by the author, Stephen Covey) of The 7 Habits and (by others) an introductory summary and detailed outlines of inside-out + overview + the habits.

The Seven Habits help us master the kind of problem-solving strategies we need for Life's Toughest Tests.

 

An Application:

A collaborative team that is Developing a Creative (and critical) Community can use character-based principles – as in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – to improve the interpersonal dynamics of the community so its independent people and their interdependent relationships will help them be more effective in (quoting from a summary of Habit 6 which builds on 123 and 45 plus 7) "the adventure of finding new solutions" because "the habit of creative cooperation... lets us discover jointly things we are much less likely to discover by ourselves. ... When people begin to interact together genuinely, and they're open to each other's influence, they begin to gain new insight."  A careful empathy-based cultivation of Emotional Bank Accounts will help members of a community build the mutual trust that encourages open-and-honest communication in a community that will be more effective in their cooperative collaborations.

 

New Beginnings and Effective People

Here is the main part of a message that I used to send, on January 1, to my chemistry students after our Fall Semester, which usually was their first semester of college.

 

Happy New Year!

I like the feeling of a new beginning, a fresh start.  It's only slightly true for a new year (since time is a continuum) but you really do have a chance for a fresh start in the new Spring Semester that begins for you later this month.  I hope you'll take full advantage of this opportunity.  Remember the welder and ask “What have I learned in the past that will help me now?” and “What can I learn now that will help me in the future?”, because this is "a good strategy for learning (from experience) how to improve welding, or anything else in life that you're motivated to improve."

You can use a familiar application of this strategy — by asking “Why did I get this wrong? What can I do to get it right the next time? How can I improve?” — not just for exam questions, but also for many situations in life.  And if things went well, as it did for most of you in Chem 103, ask “What can I do to continue my success?”  Like the welder, you can learn from all experience , from both success and failure, so you will continually improve.

The upper-right corner of our sections-page has useful information-and-links to help you improve your Strategies for Effective Learning.  During fall semester, probably you didn't have time to focus on developing these strategies because usually you were busy coping with immediate urgencies.  But now, before spring semester begins, maybe you can invest some time in improving your long-term effectiveness as a learner.

 

And here is a “life resource” that can help you become a more effective person:

I think "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" is a great book, and I wish I had begun doing these kinds of things much earlier in my life.  You have that opportunity, since you now ARE much earlier in your life.  The book is available everywhere, in stores and online, but you can get a quick overview by using these two web-resources:

• A good place to begin is an easy-to-read introductory summary.

• For a treatment with more depth, but also quick and easy to use, a series that begins with an overview continues with:  Inside-Out,  Habit 1, Habit 2,..., Habit 7,  Inside-Out Again.