“The unexamined life is not worth living.” – Socrates; 420 BC
“Life is not worth living if I cannot have pasta or bread again.” – Monica Seles; 1995
We live in a very pleasure-centered society, and we might be tempted to say that a young man like Max, who at 26 years old inherited great wealth and spends his time at the pool, surfing the net, dining on fine food, and perfecting his tan is pursuing a life worth living.
Let’s look a little closer at Max’s life, though. As it turns out, after breezing through private schools with little effort, Max never worked a day in his life or gave his time to any worthwhile causes. He has no accomplishments to his credit. If you were his friend or parent, you probably would encourage Max to try and do something with his life. A life by the pool, is not a life worth living, you need to accomplish something. Even Max knows that getting a job, volunteering, playing music, some form of accomplishment, adds greatly to a life worth living.
Even if Max pursued some accomplishments, we would agree that without people with whom to share his experiences, even Max’s luxurious life would become boring. Minimally, some Facebook friends. Preferably, real friendships and relationships. In a life worth living, we need connections to fellow human beings.
Let’s look at one last dimension. What if Max still had the emotional and intellectual maturity that he had when he was 10? Now he’s really starting to look like a loser. We need growth. Not just physical growth, but emotional, intellectual and spiritual growth as well.
An effective life, a life worth living, has accomplishment, connection and growth. When we examined the 7 habits that’s exactly what we saw:
Accomplishment: 1) Be Proactive; 2) Begin With the End in Mind; 3) Put First Things First;
Connection: 4) Think Win/Win; 5) Seek First to Understand; Then to be Understood 6) Synergize;
Growth: 7) Sharpen the Saw;
We’re putting the finishing touches on our first free video: “The 7 Habits in 3 Minutes” so that you can quickly understand and retain the 7 habits and use them to pursue more effective living. We hope Max will watch it.