In Part One I wrote that the most important line in Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People involves our responses to external events, and the fact those responses are more important than the event itself. Well another line runs it a close second:

“Act or be acted upon.”

He goes on to say that “the difference between people who exercise initiative and those who don’t is literally the difference between night and day.”

This is another of those universal recommendations across the self-help cosmos. Without proactivity we are lost, they all seem to agree. And, as with taking responsibility, this is at once a depressing but also liberating statement. A key factor in making progress involves our own actions – not those of somebody ...

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