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A Book Which Changed My Life

Updated on October 31, 2014

A Book Which Shifts Life's Paradigm. What is a Shift in Paradigm?

We use to interpret everything surrounding us from our own perspective. This perspective is our paradigm and it is based on all the beliefs we have about life. Our perspective is our inner truth, acquired through education and through our personal life experiences.

During our lifetime, it happens us to get into situations when we experience instantly a shift of this paradigm. We see the same old things in a completely new light. This happens when something or someone determines us to see things different, to give them another meaning.

To understand the tremendous effect a shift in paradigm might have, look to the picture at left. It worth a thousand words. What do you see: a duck or a rabbit?

The transformation of our own perspective could be determined by a life circumstance we encounter, by a special person we meet, by a movie we see or a book we read.

The shift could be so great, so powerful that we start to see our life completely different. We see everything in a new light and so our lives' circumstances change.

Image Credit: "Is it a duck? Is it a rabbit?" Public Domain Media File

Definition of Paradigm

The paradigm is the point of view through which someone sees a reality.

Example: loosing job could be seen as a personal drama or as an opportunity to start something new.

What Is a Shift in Paradigm?

You shift paradigm when you start to see something in a new light.

Example: Stop complaining about loosing the job and start looking for new opportunities.

After Reading This Book, My Life Really Changed. No Kidding!

I had never thought before that a single book could have such an impact.

shift in paradigm
shift in paradigm

My Story

A Book and A New Thinking Habit That Changed My Whole Life

Everything took place 15 years ago, when I discovered and read (many times since!) "7 Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen Covey.

Reading this book, I realized for the first time in my life that everything we live is determined entirely by us, by our perceptions, decisions and actions

BE PROACTIVE AND TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR LIFE. This was Covey's advice which made me think differently and made me understand that things in our lives doesn't happen TO us; they happen THROUGH us.

I understood that I CAN be the CREATOR of my life. The shift in paradigm made me pass from being a VICTIM to becoming a CREATOR.

Before changing perspective, I really was a VICTIM. Everything in my life had happened to me because of other people, of bad luck or of an unfavorable fate. Anytime I failed, someone or something from outside myself was guilty for that. I used to search for excuses and reasons why I failed outside myself. I never thought that my own thoughts and my own actions could be the trigger of the circumstances I encounter in my life.

START WITH THE END IN MIND made me wake up and understand that until that moment I let my life pass me by. I realized that I have the power to really build my own life, I understand that my life can be as I want it to be and no one else have any power over me.

Since I discovered this new paradigm, I have developed a new habit: anytime something goes wrong, I stop thinking about "who is guilty" and I analyse my own thoughts, behavior and actions.

7 Habits of Highly Effective People

The 7 Habits: - Get Them and Change Your Life!

  1. Habit 1: Be Proactive -- Take responsibility for your life.
  2. Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind -- Define your mission and goals in life.
  3. Habit 3: Put First Things First -- Prioritize, and do the most important things first.
  4. Habit 4: Think Win-Win -- Have an everyone-can-win attitude.
  5. Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood -- Listen to people sincerely.
  6. Habit 6: Synergize -- Work together to achieve more.
  7. Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw -- Renew yourself regularly.

Books That Change Your Life - A Book To Read and Re-Read

This book is so well known that we might skip it! We think we know everything about it and go look for new books.

Though, we owe a lot to the classics. They help us to evolve. They are those wise people who put the bricks of the knowledge we acquired until present.

It is like we walk everyday through our own city or town and we know all the buildings so well that we don't notice them. If someone asks us to describe them, we realize that we never really saw them.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change

You have to read this book. It is one of the books that change your life. This could be for you, as it was for me, the starting point of a new life. Even if you had read it before, maybe it is about the time to have a new look on it.

 

Be proactive and take responsibility for your life

What's A Habit?

Behavior Habits and Thinking Habits

Reading Stephen Covey's book I not only realized that there is another way of looking to my own life, but I also understand something else: our lives are build on HABITS. Everything we do in our daily life is based on what we ARE USED TO DO.

We are used to eat some specific things in the morning, we are used to take a certain road when going to work, we are used to shop at the same stores the same things; when we arrive home we push immediately the TV set button and during weekends we use to spend our free time in quite the same way... Almost 90% of what we are doing is on auto pilot.

Our thoughts are also HABITS, thinking habits. We interpret automatically everything occurring to us through our beliefs.

Believing that my life is determined by outer factors, I used to see everything happening to me as the result of an external cause. If I couldn't find something on my desk, I immediately thought that one of my colleagues took it. When my boss was upset on me for not finishing a project in due time, my team was guilty for not listening to me. When my child didn't follow my advice, she was guilty for being stubborn, and so on...

Without even knowing, I was the victim of my own thinking habits. I never thought that I could see things differently. The way I looked to the circumstances in my life was for me the single possible truth.

This book made me think about my own paradigm. The idea of being responsible for everything arriving in my life opened for me a new perspective. I began to put myself questions about the way I think and the decisions I take in my daily life. I discovered a lot of beliefs I have about life and I started to question them. I got that all those beliefs represented only the way I saw life and not THE TRUTH about life, as I thought before.

Image: Paul / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Overcoming My Limits

How I Succeeded to Break The Walls of My (Thinking) Comfort Zone

Any habit, from smoking to believing that you are not capable to do something, becomes in time stronger and stronger. It is not easy to get rid of a bad habit. Even if we are aware that a certain habit is not good for us, we find ourselves choosing to do it again and again.

Fighting a bad habit makes the habit more powerful and gets you more demotivated. The best way to get rid of any bad habit is to replace it with a good habit.

Anytime I faced a failure, I got used to ask myself: "what did I wrong?" And, starting to search for the answer, I forgot about looking for the person guilty for my "bad luck"...

This is the secret to change a bad habit: find something to do instead. Right in the moment your bad habit is preparing to take its place, do instantly your new action.

It works for me like wonder. My thinking pattern changed. Now I feel responsible for everything happens to me and I know that my life is in my hands.

Image: Danilo Rizzuti / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

"The best way to predict the future is to invent it"

(Alan Kay)

Begin with the End in Mind - Best Way of Predicting the Future is to Create It

Taking responsibility of the own future is the best decision someone can make in his/her life. What we think is what we get.

Building Our Future

Acknowledging about the possibility of really being able to build our future is a big responsibility for us. It is exhilarating and frightening at the same time.

Thinking about what we want in life and about how our life we would like to be it is not easy.

Firstly, we will find ourselves limited by our own imagination. We will be tempted to think starting from where we are at present and we will put ourselves limits regarding what we really COULD accomplish in the future.

Secondly, we will have to give ourselves an answer to a question: what is the purpose of our lives?

Building the future is not an easy process. It might seem like an answer we have to give to the Goldenfish who met us to fulfill any wish. But it is much more than that.

It is a process of digging deep inside us and discovering things that we never thought about. It is a process of overcoming all our limits, of setting high goals, and of pursuing them.

Image: graur razvan ionut / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

7 Habits for Highly Effective Kids

Sean Covey, Stephen's Son - 7 Habits of Highly Effective Kids

If we postpone to do what is good for us or, simply, if we don't want to put the effort to change our lives because we think it is too difficult or too late, we don't have the right to not teach our kids good living habits.

Sean is the living example of the effectiveness of applying the 7 habits. Stephen taught him the habits and rise him following these principles. He graduated from BYU with a degree in English and later earned his MBA from Harvard Business School. He is a popular speaker to youth and adult groups. Author of the international bestseller, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens which has sold over three million copies and is translated in over 15 languages.

Teaching Kids The 7 Habits - Give your kids the chance to master their lives!

Never is too late to change your life, but as early you begin, as better. We want the best for our kids. Helping them build good habits from their early ages is really the most valuable thing we can grant them.

The 7 Habits of Happy Kids
The 7 Habits of Happy Kids

Very helpful in teaching our kids Covey's principles

Your kids will love this book!

 

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens

Sean Covey: 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens - A Book for All Ages

If you had problems reading '7 Habits of Highly Effective People' of Stephen Covey, you must try his son's book, which is the same thing written in a simpler and entertaining style. Most people reading both books said the son over passed his father!

Best selling author like his father, Sean Covey sold over 2,000,000 copies of his book, '7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens'

Sean is the most clear evidence that all these principles work. Sean dedicated his life in pursuing excellence and in helping other people to do the same thing. He was taught by his father how to approach life and he translated in his book all he learned. But, unlike his father, he changed the style. So, his book is straightforward, very easy to read and both teenagers and their parents loved it.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens: The Ultimate Teenage Success Guide
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens: The Ultimate Teenage Success Guide

This is a must read for anyone, doesn't matter his age.

 

Do You Think You Can Really Build Your Own Life? - Is it possible to live as we want to, or we are at the mercy of circumstances we live in?

Is our future in our hands?

Definetly, YES

Definetly, YES

Submit a Comment

  • MiaMusement 4 years ago

    I like Mike Dooley's "thoughts become things; think good thoughts" approach.

  • Peta Panos 5 years ago from Norway

    Absolutely! Your fate is your blueprint and your destiny the highest expression of your fate. Your core beliefs and thoughts direct your feelings and collectively are your vibration. The higher your vibration, the more positive your experiences. Perception is everything :-)

  • Sharyn Read 5 years ago from ... either in the kitchen or at my laptop...

    Absolutely YES! We are creating our reality every second, so we look one day and don't like what we've made, we can choose a big idea and make a better outcome for ourselves! Loved you lens - thank you for sharing and inspiring! :)

  • Tony Payne 5 years ago from Southampton, UK

    In some ways it is in our hands, but if we want to do something that requires money, we have to make that money first, and sometimes you need money to make money.

  • DJam1 5 years ago

    Excellent information

  • elizabethknows lm 5 years ago

    I think so... I have always believed we can speak things into existence...

  • Zut Moon 5 years ago

    Much of what happens to us is a result of our attitudes which cause us to react the way we do in certain situations.

  • klaird 5 years ago

    We make thousands of decisions everyday, each one shapes and defines our life and happiness. We can absolutely build our own lives!

NO, we cannot do much to change our lives

Submit a Comment

No comments yet.

take risk
take risk

How to Start Building a New Life

Take the Risk of Finding Your Happiness!

Today, in his blog post, Seth Godin said something that make me think more about the habits which define our lives: "Seek out habits that help you overcome fear or inertia. Destroy those that do the opposite."

Fear and inertia are our biggest enemies keeping us in our comfort zone. We are feeling safe when we are on a known territory. Even if we realize that we should do a lot of things for living a better life, we cannot do anything. Fear and inertia 'help' us to stand still by offering us a lot of reasons for not taking action. As a well known affirmation states, we cannot have other results as long as we do the same things every day. Our rational mind understands it, but any impulse to go out of our daily habitual schedule is automatically annihilated by fear of risk and wish to stay comfortable. Why to bother? It is 'safer' to stay where we are...

Besides our habits, our friends and relatives are usually 'helping' us to prevent any change in our lives. They reinforce the power of our habits with more reasons to not move further. Loving us, they want us to not take any risk, to stay inside the limits we have already settled.

There is no evolution without risk. The good news is that it is possible to live as we would like. The bad news is that building the life of our dreams requires a big effort from our part.

We need to start first by breaking down the barriers we put in our own minds.

First, we have to stretch our imagination and settle a big goal.

Second, we have to:

- analyse what we are doing daily,

- identify the habits which keep us in fear and inertia

- replace them with the habit of living uncomfortable

until we find a new comfort zone.

Then, we have to repeat the process.

This is the way to become successful.

Image: federico stevanin / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Stephen Covey Books

If "The 7 Habits" Helped You, Go Read Other Books By Stephen Covey - It's About the Time To Transform Yourself!

The most beautiful thing in life is that we always have a choice: to survive or to make a difference.

Surviving means to be a victim and live like a victim.

Making a difference means living on a purpose, setting high goals and preparing ourselves to live them. It is not easy to enroll on the road of self transformation. We need inspiration and help. We need mentors. Stephen Covey is one of them.

Have You Ever Experienced a Shift in Your Life Perspective? - Share Here Your Experience!

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    • TeacherSerenia profile image

      TeacherSerenia 5 years ago

      YES - I dont really have one book - I have several books - see my lens - 10 books that changed my life.

      You dont know how many people I meet and know - who constantly refuse to accept responsibility for their lives or for the actions they do. Christians or religious people are the worst. - The devil made me do it, Satan made me so it, The alcohol made me do it,,,

      I dislike intensely anyone who refuses to accept responsibility for their own actions. They made the choice to commit that action (or not to commit to an action) and they must suffer the consequences. I am still teaching this to my 9 year old son.

      If humans could all learn this lesson - the world would be a much better place to live in.

    • traveller27 profile image

      traveller27 5 years ago

      I have a few "key books", too. Thanks for sharing.

    • BLouw profile image

      Barbara Walton 5 years ago from France

      I find this sort of thing difficult. Excellent advice, all you have to do is carry it out. When I worked for local government, they sent us all on a course to learn these 7 habits, but I find that it's a bit like saying if I give up wine and coffee, drink litres of water, swim and run daily, meditate, do yoga and learn singing I'm be fitter, healthier and more relaxed. I'm sure I would but am I going to do it???

    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 5 years ago

      Continually ~THUMBS UP lens! This is one to visit often.

    • profile image

      AlleyCatLane 5 years ago

      I have had this book for years but never was able to get through it. Guess I need to pull it off the shelf and try again. The messages you describe are the same that many motivational people tout. I find some other writers are more easily read and digested like Mike Dooley. But I might give it a try agan.

    • profile image

      klaird 5 years ago

      I need to dig out my copy of this book and reread it! Great topic!

    • profile image

      Ruthi 5 years ago

      I read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Covey many years ago. It might not hurt to read the book again.

    • ViJuvenate profile image

      ViJuvenate 5 years ago

      Yes, I did. When God became real to me and not just Someone I grew up hearing about in church. Talk about an amazing paradigm shift!

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 5 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Definitely I have in the past. My worst problem is having A.D.D., something which I only diagnosed in the last few years, but which has dogged me all of my life. At points when I really need to focus on something to get ahead, I am most likely to want to sidetrack myself. It's very hard to overcome. Excellent information here, blessed.

    • FunMoneyBusiness profile image

      Sharyn Read 5 years ago from ... either in the kitchen or at my laptop...

      Yes, the day Bob Proctor via the "You Were Born Rich" Seminar told me "I am responsible for my thoughts, feelings and actions" and therefore my results. Once I knew it was ME, then I knew I could change, I did, and now I am free!

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 4 years ago

      THANKS for all the information on your lens...

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 4 years ago

      YES...the day I started reading books from Jim Rohn, and later The Secret...and many others...

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 4 years ago

      You did a wonderful job writing this lens.

    • profile image

      MiaMusement 4 years ago

      I read the "7 Habits" book many years ago, but you've introduced me to some later works I've not yet read. I've put them on my library list and will look forward to reading them in the New Year. Thank you!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Good to read a great selection of motivational books during the 'growing up' years!

    • profile image

      ChroniclesofaWa 4 years ago

      I haven't read this book but would love too.

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