Sow a thought, reap an action; sow an action, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny..

I was never really a fan of any self help books, since I always believed any change has to come from within and not from someone else forcing it onto you, that too, through books. And then, I came across a Ted talk by Tony Robbins. Over the years, I have watched a fair share of Ted talks, but there is something different about this particular speaker – his energy, confidence, and the content of his talk (to name a few) made me wonder who this guy really is. So, I started looking up on the internet for Tony Robbins and was actually amazed to find out that he was a janitor, a mere 10 years ago. He successfully transformed himself from a janitor to a Businessman with $480 Mn net worth; from someone who didn’t feel he was making any difference to this world to someone who has been helping several people, from CEO’s to common people, transform their lives.

To understand more about Tony Robbins and how he did what he did, I started reading one of his self help books – “Awaken the Giant Within”. More than anything else, it gave me an insight into how people handle difficult life situations differently and how sowing a single thought has the potential to move you closer to the destiny that you have always dreamed of. While “Awaken the Giant within” is about your belief system and how to consciously change it, “The 7 Habits of highly effective people” goes a little deeper into developing habits, which the author refers to as maps, that aligns with the principles, which the author refers to as territory. While Tony Robbins helped me realize that self help books are indeed helpful, Stephen Covey’s, T7HoHEP, gave me a deep insight and understanding of the human thought patterns and how one can consciously take a leap from reactive thinking to proactive thinking.




Title: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People                                                                         Author: Stephen R. Covey
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Total Pages: 432


You can buy the book here:


The first part of the book gives a detailed view of how different human characters shape up and what are the different stages in achieving a emotional maturity. The author describes this as a 3 step process called Inside-Out which has to be learned in a sequential manner.

  • The first stage is dependence, which every infant finds himself in. It’s a state where you depend on others for your physical and emotional needs. You strive for the approval of others and your opinion on yourself is nothing but what the other people feel about you.
  • The path to emotional maturity needs you to move from a state of dependence to state of independence, where you lay more emphasis on your inner feelings and what you think about yourself. He goes on to say that only a few people will be truly independent.
  • Achieving independence is a huge achievement in itself but to attain that emotional mastery, one has to be interdependent – working with others, understanding their point of view and their perception.

The author then lists various habits that one has to inculcate to truly achieve emotional maturity. These habits are classified as follows:

  • Private Victories / Self-mastery
    1. Be Proactive
    2. Begin with the End in Mind
    3. Put First things First

The 3 habits of Private Victories will aid you in moving from a state of dependence to a state of independence. Once you become truly independent, you have an effective character base from which you can develop your remaining habits to become truly interdependent. These Habits are as below:

  • Public Victories
    1. Think Win/Win
    2. Seek first to understand, then to be understood
    3. Synergize
    4. Habit of renewal

These 7 habits are the habits of effectiveness, since these are based on Principles that bring maximum long term beneficial results possible. Since I don’t prefer long posts, each of these habits are explained in detail in separate posts.