· us to keep first things first only. ·

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First Things First was
published in the year 1994. It is basically a self-help book written by Stephen
Covey, A. Roger Merrill, and Rebecca R. Merrill. This book talks about making
efficient time management a habit so that a person can achieve effectiveness by
being in line with the “first things”. The time management explained in the
book is principle-centered unlike the traditional one. This book has a lot of
anecdotes to explain this. This book is divided into four sections.

 

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In Section One, using the
analogy of “the clock and the compass,” the authors explain that
identifying primary roles and principles provides a “true north” (as
in a compass) and reference when deciding what activities are most important
and the decisions are not merely guided by the “clock” of scheduling.
The authors justify this by numerous anecdotes. This approach in my view is
better because our choice of destination matters more than the speed at which
we are approaching. The authors discuss about the three “generations” of time
management of which the first generation is “reminder-based”, the second one is
“planning and preparation based” and the third one is “planning, prioritizing
and controlling based”. Strengths and weaknesses of each levels are discussed
concluding that the third generation people are the most promising ones
strength wise and also weakness wise. Therefore the need of a fourth generation
is mentioned. The explanation given for prioritizing Urgency and Importance is
a very clear one which is shown by making four quadrants. Asserting that people
have a need “to live, to love, to learn, and to leave a legacy” they
propose moving beyond “urgency” .

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In section two, “the main
thing is to keep the main thing the main thing”, the authors try to further
demolish the confusion on prioritizing urgency over importance by introducing a
thirty minute weekly process. Various factors are looked into in this section
like detecting the missions, creating future vision which in turn gives meaning
and purpose. This section gives us an idea of how maintain a perspective that
empowers us to keep first things first only.

 

 

·        
The third section talks about
the synergy of interdependence. Here “Delegation” is presented as an important
part of time management. According to Covey, Successful delegation, focuses on
results and benchmarks that are to be agreed in advance, rather than on
prescribing detailed work plans.

 

·        
The Fourth Section,” The power
and peace of principle centered living”, the authors give us some real life
examples and try to justify that the fourth generation approach will literally
transform the quality of our day and the nature of what we do. They have
concluded the book by focusing on the principles of peace and by explaining how
to avoid the main obstacles to a life of fulfillment, joy and specially
meaning.