The 7 Core Habits And Principles of Legends!

covey legacy 2

By Daniel Schmitz, Associate Partner, Lighthouse International

"Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals."

- Jim Rohn

How many development books have you heard of or read? Books with titles like:

“10 steps to change your life”, “7 steps to reach your goals”, “15 steps to get rich” etc.

Lots of these books can make change sound easy and like it is about just following some tips. Have you ever asked yourself questions like...

"How do I achieve my goals?", 

"Where do I start and what do I need to do?", 

"Why can't I apply what's in the books, what is missing?"

"Can these steps be learned?"

If you look at every single legend and where they have succeeded you will see the same habits and underlying principles at work - time and time again! When they fail you will equally see that they broke themselves against these same principles. Isn't that fascinating or at the very least intriguing?

As a training and development organisation, we have studied over 1000 books and worked with more than 20,000 people over the last 12 years, there is one book which brings these fundamental success principles together more than any other. The Wall Street Journal called this book "the most influential business book of the century." That book is called:

"The 7 Habit of Highly Effective People" by Stephen R. Covey

When writing this book, Mr. Covey analysed the success literature of the last 200 years and looked for reoccurring patterns.

The book outlines the habits and fundamental principles on which all successful outcomes are based, and which are followed by all legends.

So...What Are Principles?

"There are principles that govern human effectiveness - natural laws in the human dimension that are just as real, just as unchanging and unarguably "there" as laws such a gravity are in the physical dimension."

- Stephen R. Covey

You will see all of these habits and principles play out throughout the lives of legends -  where they succeed and fail. These principles are present in our own lives too. They govern pretty much anything we do. When we succeed at anything, we are often - unknowingly - aligning ourselves with them. When we fail, it's because we are also - often unknowingly - breaking ourselves against them. If there is one guarantee you have to become successful, it's to learn and follow these principles like your life depends on it! Because it does! 🙂

Throughout the site, you will find time and time again the same principles coming up -  regardless of which legend it is. They are not dependent on skill level and technique, background, race or religion, these principles and habits are universal (as you can see below)!

"There are principles that govern human effectiveness - natural laws in the human dimension that are just as real, just as unchanging and unarguably "there" as laws such a gravity are in the physical dimension."

- Stephen R. Covey

The following video outlines the 7 habits in combination with some great everyday examples. You'll see an explanation of the principles below...

Here Are The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

1 - Be Proactive

“I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.”

- Stephen R. Covey

This habit is based on the Principles of Personal Vision and is about how you see the world, i.e. your outlook. Personal Vision is also about recognising that you are able to make your own healthy choices and that you are not determined by circumstances and can choose to respond. To discover how this habit is lived by legends, check out this article about holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl.

2 - Begin with the End in Mind

“Begin with the end in mind. Start with the end outcome and work backwards to make your dream possible.”

- Wayne Dyer

This habit is based on the Principles of Personal Leadership and developing a clear idea of who you want to be and what you want to do with your life. Check out more about how designing your life is like building a house here...

3 - Put First Things First

“The key is not to prioritise what's on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.”

Stephen R. Covey

This habit is based on the Principles of Personal Management. A big part of this is managing your own time based on what's important to you on a day-to-day basis. You can read about a great example of successful time management here by President Dwight Eisenhower.

4 - Think Win-Win or No Deal

"Win-win is a belief in the Third Alternative. It's not your way or my way; it's a better way, a higher way." - Stephen R. Covey

This habit is based on the Principles of Interpersonal Leadership and fairness. Nothing sustainable can be created without meaningful relationships with others to find win-win solutions. Here is a great example of creating Win-Win energy solutions in Rwanda.

5 - Seek First to Understand, Then To Be Understood

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” - 

Stephen R. Covey

This habit is based on the Principles of Empathic Communication. Through empathising with others, listening and seeking to understand first, Bill Gates learned about the struggle of people to get out of poverty.

6 - Synergize

“When the trust account is high, communication is easy, instant, and effective.”

- Stephen R. Covey

This habit is based on the Principles of Creative Cooperation. Synergising is fundamental to success because it means that a team working in harmony can achieve far more than any individual member could. Here's an article about how Warren Buffet's friend helped him to succeed.

7 - Sharpen the Saw

“Sharpen the Saw means preserving and enhancing the greatest asset you have--you. It means having a balanced program for self-renewal in the four areas of your life: physical, social/emotional, mental, and spiritual.”

- Stephen R. Covey

This habit is based on the Principles of Balanced Self-Renewal. It is about the importance of taking time to improve and develop yourself in the four aspects of a human being - physical, social/emotional, mental, and spiritual. Here's how successful people do that at the weekend.

Isn't it incredibly powerful to have a framework based on evidence, and examples which will enable us to become successful? To see, that we can learn how to apply these principles, how to develop these habits and then actually realise our success. The Legends Report is all about bringing these principles to life through legendary examples.

How To Apply This!

Go and purchase a copy of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and dedicate yourself to mastering it! Link here...


1. Which of the above habits do you feel would be most important to you at this stage of your life?



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By |2018-07-07T18:58:04+00:00December 22nd, 2016|

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