Focusing only on getting the ‘golden eggs’ is ineffective and leads to stress, burn-out and disease no matter how lucrative these “golden eggs” are. To maintain and increase effectiveness, we must renew ourselves in body,relationships, mind and spirit – in a sense, we must focus on nurturing “the goose, that lays the golden eggs” – that’s effectiveness!
Understanding this principle of renewal and changing our behaviour to always focus on regular renewal of the body, mind, relationship and spirit especially in the hard moments leads to improved capacity, stronger relationships, greater internal reserves and continuous improvements. In this last installment of “The 7 Habit of Highly Effective People”, Carol Naneu shares on habit number seven – “Sharpen the saw” which is the habit of renewal.
Leonard Mcharo, Pipeline Builder
HABIT 7: SHARPEN THE SAW – The Habit of Renewal
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.
Physical: Beneficial eating, exercising and resting.
Social/emotional: Making social and meaningful connections with others
Mental: Learning, reading, writing and teaching.
Spiritual: Spending time in nature, expanding spiritual self through meditation, music, Art, prayer and service
As you renew yourself in each of the four areas, you create growth and change in your life. Sharpen the Saw keeps you fresh so you can continue to practice the other six habits. You increase your capacity to produce and handle the challenges around you. Without this renewal, the body becomes weak, the mind mechanical, the emotions raw, the spirit insensitive, and the person selfish. Not a pretty picture, is it?
Feeling good doesn’t just happen. Living a life in balance means taking the necessary time to renew yourself. It’s all up to you. You can renew yourself through relaxation. Or you can totally burn yourself out by overdoing everything. You can pamper yourself mentally and spiritually. Or you can go through life oblivious to your well-being. You can experience vibrant energy. Or you can procrastinate and miss out on the benefits of good health and exercise. You can revitalize yourself and face a new day in peace and harmony. Or you can wake up in the morning full of lethargy because your get-up-and-go has got-up-and-gone. Just remember that every day provides a new opportunity for renewal–a new opportunity to recharge yourself instead of hitting the wall.
This habit makes the other habits happen. Without this you will not be able to do the others. Let’s remind ourselves;
Habit #2: Begin with the End in Mind – Control your destiny, know where you are going and how to get there.
Habit #3: Put First Things First – Have the “will” and the “won’t” power. Do only the important things.
Habit #4: Think Win-Win – Everyone can share in the pie of success.
Habit #5: Seek First to Understand, then to Be Understood – Listen genuinely to understand others and then communicate effectively to be understood.
Habit #6: Synergize – Collaborate with others to find “The High Way”
Habit #7: Sharpen the Saw – Seek daily renewal “Me time”
As you seek renewal in each of the four areas, you create growth and change in your life. You increase your capacity to produce and handle the challenges around you. “If you are not green and growing, you are ripe and rotting”
Feeling good doesn’t just happen. Living a life in balance means taking the necessary time to renew yourself. It’s all up to you. Just remember that every day provides a new opportunity for renewal–a new opportunity to recharge yourself instead of hitting the wall. All it takes is the desire, knowledge, and skill.
The more proactive you are (Habit 1) the more effective you can exercise personal leadership (Habit 2) and personal management (Habit 3).
The more effectively you can manage your life (Habit 3) the more time you will have for self-renewal (Habit 7).
The more you renew yourself physically, spiritually, mentally and emotionally, the more you can understand the views of others (Habit 5) and identify ways in which their success can also be your success (Habit 4).
The more you can seek interdependence success, the more you will be able to benefit from life, enabling you to become more proactive (Habit 1) and seek change that will at its best and at the very least make you a more effective person (The 7 Habits)
Over time remembering to Sharpen Your Saw will get easier to plan and do. Whatever you choose will become a feeder into a life of quality — the glass half full — abundance of your life.
Here’s to your financial independence!
Head of Partnership Experience – TSAVO