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From Stephen R. Covey comes a profound, compelling, and groundbreaking book of next-level thinking that gives a clear way to finally tap the limitless value-creation promise of the “Knowledge Worker Age.” In the more than twenty-five years since its publication, the classic The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has become an international phenomenon with more than twenty-five million copies sold. Tens of millions of people in business, government, schools, and families, and, most importantly, as individuals, have dramatically improved their lives and organizations by applying the principles of Stephen R. Covey’s classic book. The world, however, is a vastly changed place. Being effective as individuals and organizations is no longer merely an option—survival in today’s world requires it. But in order to thrive, innovate, excel, and lead in what Covey calls the “New Knowledge Worker Age,” we must build on and move beyond effectiveness. The call of this new era in human history is for greatness; it’s for fulfillment, passionate execution, and significant contribution. Accessing the higher levels of human genius and motivation in today’s new reality requires a change in thinking: a new mindset, a new skill-set, a new tool-set—in short, a whole new habit. The crucial challenge of our world today is this: to find our voice and inspire others to find theirs. It is what Covey calls the 8th Habit. So many people feel frustrated, discouraged, unappreciated, and undervalued—with little or no sense of voice or unique contribution. The 8th Habit is the answer to the soul’s yearning for greatness, the organization’s imperative for significance and superior results, and humanity’s search for its “voice.” Covey’s new book will transform the way we think about ourselves, our purpose in life, our organizations, and about humankind.
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The 8th habit of highly effective people is: "Find your voice and inspire others to do likewise."
This latest habit is not an add-on to the original seven habits, but represents another dimension of effectiveness which will enhance the performance of each of the other seven habits.
To find your voice means to engage in work that genuinely taps your talents and fuels your passion. It means to do something significant with your career──to sense an unmet need and then to fully harness all your talents and passion to meet that need. To find your voice means to take the path to greatness rather than settling for mediocrity.
Discover your own voice
One of the most frustrating things for the majority of people is the fact they rarely have the opportunity to realize a life of greatness and contribution. Instead, people spend the majority of their careers operating at a much lower level. They are aware of the tremendous challenges and problems which exist, but most people have not developed the internal power nor the moral authority to become a force in solving those problems.
To address this challenge, you need to find your own voice. When this happens, a fire will light inside you which will fuel tremendous drive and commitment. To be able to actually find your voice, however, you first need to understand a simple way of thinking about life.
A whole person has four basic components:
A physical body.
A mind capable of independent thought and analysis.
A heart which can feel emotion.
A spirit—your soul or philosophical center.
Each of these components has a corresponding basic need or motivation:
Physical body—"To live."
Spirit—"To leave a legacy."
The highest manifestations of these capacities are:
As you begin to understand, respect and ultimately balance these highest manifestations for yourself, synergy is created. You become energized as you begin to understand what you're actually capable of achieving. When you engage in work that taps your talents and fuels your passions, and which fills the need your conscience has drawn you towards, you find your voice. This is often described as"finding your true calling in life"or"unlocking your soul's code."
The human voice is unique and significant because it lies at the intersection of your own unique:
Talents—your natural gifts and strengths.
Passion—those things that excite and enthuse you.
Needs—the necessity that you earn a living by providing what people are willing to pay for.
Conscience—that still, small internal voice or com-pass which confirms what is right and when you're doing it.
The challenge of life is to discover your own quite unique voice, which will lie in the potential that was bequeathed to you at birth. When you discover that, no longer will you feel like a victim of your circumstances. Instead, you'll be in a position of power to move forward with confidence into the future.
"All children are born geniuses; 9,999 out of every 10,000 are swiftly, inadvertently degeniusized by grownups."
Buckminster Fuller, inventor
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