In my own words Lessons from a highly effective seminar
May 6, 2001
In March, five of my fellow Meridianites and I had the privilege of attending Stephen Covey's seminar on "The 7 Habits of Highly effective People."
To sum the experience into a single word, "Wow!"
The information presented was simple and down to earth, focusing on common sense concepts that nearly everyone can understand.
When applied and practiced, these basic concepts are simply incredible. The principles and habits we studied included: Think Win-Win; Be Proactive; Put First Things First; Begin With the End in Mind; and Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood.
WE have control
The Covey training embeds in us that, in most instances, WE have control over our lives and most of the outcomes associated with our lives. In short, we have a choice in life.
Have you ever said to a person, "Hi, how are you today?" and in return received, "Well, I'm here. I'm tired and did not want to get out of bed and I have a headache. Other than that, I guess okay."
It would have been much more pleasant for both parties if that person would have responded, "I am blessed" or "I am looking forward to the day."
This training reminded me that I have control over my actions and moods and I have to accept responsibility for those actions. I have a choice in how I react to a situation, where I live, where I work, where I attend church, with whom I socialize, my weight, my exercise routine, my ethics, and other things.
If I do not like any of the previously mentioned items, who is the only person who can change it? ME. Complaining will not change these situations I have to be proactive and make the changes myself.
For example, in one of our group's training sessions, our facilitator had us tie balloons around our ankles. He told us that anyone who still had his or her balloon intact at the end of one minute would win.
For the next 60 seconds, we feverishly tried to stomp on each other's balloons while protecting our own. At the end of the time, our facilitator asked, "Didn't you understand the instructions? I said anyone who still had his or her balloon intact would win. Everyone in this room could have won if you hadn't tried to be the ONLY one to win."
Wade Jones, president of the East Mississippi Business Development Corporation, is working to bring this type of training to Meridian, with the idea that it will not only help businesses, but also help grow this community into a body of people which can work together for common goals.
These basic principles should appeal to everyone, regardless of educational attainment or the current job a person holds. All you need is a desire to want to change.
I believe in this training so much that I began sharing one habit a week to a group of people who work with me. My hope is that they are able to gain at least some understanding of these habits and grow their lives both professionally and personally.
Crystal Dupr is advertising director of The Meridian Star. E-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her at 693-1551, ext. 3259.