Our lives are busy and full of change. Keeping our priorities in order while maintaining focus and vision is a constant challenge. We live in a society that loves short cut techniques where there is no short cut, only a path based on principles revealed throughout history. A meaningful life is not a matter of speed and efficiency but what you do and why you do it - and we need to be reminded of this everyday. The best way is to take a few minutes of quiet time before the daily rush. Our hearts and minds need nourishment and this is the purpose of this book - to provide daily nourishment through the daily reading of wisdom literature that can have a profound effect on the quality of our daily decisions by keeping us focused on what is important and preventing us being swept away by urgency. Covey believes these little daily thoughts will help us do three things - to reconnect with our big ideas and the insights that accompanied learning them; to encourage us to take a little breathing space between events and our response - a space that reconnects us to our inner compass; and to garnish our wisdom literature habit. We need to be constantly reminded of the principles that have been part of the wisdom of every successful individual and civilization. These are some of the readings that made an impression on me: January 4: Be governed by your internal compass, not by some clock on the wall. January 5: If the thing you are committed to is principle-centered, you become principle-centered and you walk your talk. January 11: While you can be efficient with things you cannot be efficient - effectively - with people. January 14: We need to move beyond time management to life leadership. January 23: Meaning is in contribution, in striving for something higher than self. January 29: We choose either to live our lives or let others live them for us. January 30: The best way to predict your future is to create it. February 6: The more involved you are, the more significant your learning will be. February 7: What does it matter how much we do if what we're doing isn't what matters most. February 14: More than any other factor, vision affects the choices we make and the way we spend our time. February 18: Vision is the fundamental force that drives everything else in our lives. February 22: There's no way we can escape accountability. We do make a difference - one way or the other. We are responsible for the impact of our lives. I think that Covey is right. We need a five-minute reminder as we start each day to make sure that we keep our thoughts, plans and priorities pointed in the right direction because where we're headed is more important than how fast we're going.
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I found the description misleading and the book disappointing. The book is essentially a one-liner reference guide to Covey's book First things First. Each calendar day gives a principle and refers to a page in First Things First, so without the original text this book makes little sense. The effect of limited entrys means that in actual fact most of the pages are blank, May 3rd for example is 7 words. I have the 7 Habits, First things First, as well as other Covey titles but this is not one that comes anywhere near the expected standard.
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What a wonderful way to focus. This is poignant set of thoughts linked to Covey's Seven Habits of Highly effective people and proves to be a wonderful bank of key messages for daily focus. Covey is a brilliant mind. Well worth having beside you.