Stephen Covey Quotes

De lezers van deze site zullen vast en zeker het boek “De zeven eigenschappen van effectief leiderschap” van Stephen Covey kennen. De kernboodschap van het boek is dat de effectiefste  mensen een zevental gewoontes of routines hebben die ten grondslag liggen aan hun succes en dat het voor iedereen mogelijk is om deze gewoonten bij zichzelf verder te ontwikkelen.

Stephan Covey was een meester met woorden. Hij heeft ons achtergelaten met ideeën en allerlei principes en gewoontes. Hij moedigde ons aan om over na te denken over keuze en verandering, betrokkenheid, continu leren, discipline, doelmatigheid en doeltreffendheid, geluk, integriteit, de vrijheid, het luisteren, persoonlijke ontwikkeling, perspectief, principes, time management, vertrouwen, geest, waarden en visie, ….

Hieronder een aantal quotes van Covey.

Top 10 Stephen Covey Quotes

  1. “As long as you think the problem is out there, that very thought is the problem”
  2. “Be a light, not a judge. Be a model, not a critic”
  3. “Live, love, laugh, leave a legacy.”
  4. “Live out of your imagination, not your history.”
  5. “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”
  6. “Sow a thought, reap an action; sow an action, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny.”
  7. “Strength lies in differences, not in similarities”
  8. “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.
  9. ”The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.
  10. ”Your economic security does not lie in your job; it lies in your own power to produce – to think, to learn, to create, to adapt. That’s true financial independence. It’s not having wealth; it’s having the power to produce wealth.”

Keuze en verandering

  •  “I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions.”
  •  “It’s not what happens to us, but our response to what happens to us that hurts us.”
  • “My behavior is a product of my own conscious choices based on principles, rather than a product of my conditions, based on feelings.”  
  • ”There are three constants in life… change, choice and principles.
  • “We are not animals. We are not a product of what has happened to us in our past. We have the power of choice.”

Voortdurend leren

  • “Admission of ignorance is often the first step in our education.”
  • “Don’t argue for other people’s weaknesses. Don’t argue for your own. When you make a mistake, admit it, correct it, and learn from it immediately.”
  • “It is one thing to make a mistake, and quite another thing not to admit it. People will forgive mistakes, because mistakes are usually of the mind, mistakes of judgment. But people will not easily forgive the mistakes of the heart, the ill intention, the bad motives, the prideful justifying cover-up of the first mistake.”
  • “When you have a challenge and the response is equal to the challenge, that’s called ‘success’. But once you have a new challenge, the old, once-successful response no longer works. That’s why it is called a ‘failure’.”

Efficientie en effectiviteit

  •  “Be sure that, as you scramble up the ladder of success, it is leaning against the right building.”
  •  “Ineffective people live day after day with unused potential. They experience synergy only in small, peripheral ways in their lives. But creative experiences can be produced regularly, consistently, almost daily in people’s lives. It requires enormous personal security and openness and a spirit of adventure.”
  •  “While we cannot always choose what happens to us, we can choose our responses.”

Onafhankelijkheid en vrijheid

  • Accountability breeds response-ability.”
  • “Between stimulus and response is our greatest power – the freedom to choose.”
  • “Dependent people need others to get what they want. Independent people can get what they want through their own efforts. Interdependent people combine their own efforts with the efforts of others to achieve their greatest success.”
  •  “Our behavior is a function of our decisions, not our conditions.”
  • “Our ultimate freedom is the right and power to decide how anybody or anything outside ourselves will affect us.”
  •  “We are responsible for our own lives.”


  • “Basing our happiness on our ability to control everything is futile.”
  • “Happiness can be defined, in part at least, as the fruit of the desire and ability to sacrifice what we want now for what we want eventually.”
  • “Happiness, like unhappiness, is a proactive choice.”
  •  “People simply feel better about themselves when they’re good at something.”


  • “Involve people in the problem and work out the solution together.”
  • “Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.”
  • “Management works in the system; Leadership works on the system.”
  •  “The real beginning of influence comes as others sense you are being influenced by them – when they feel understood by you – that you have listened deeply and sincerely, and that you are open.”
  • “We accomplish all that we do through delegation — either to time or to other people.”

Persoonlijke ontwikkeling

  • A good affirmation has five basic ingredients: it’s personal, it’s positive, it’s present tense, it’s visual, and it’s emotional.”
  •  “As human beings, we are responsible for our own lives. Our behavior is a function of our decisions, not our conditions. We can subordinate feelings to values.”
  • “At some time in your life, you probably had someone believe in you when you didn’t believe in yourself.”
  •  “If we want to make relatively minor changes in our lives, we can perhaps appropriately focus on our attitudes and behaviors. But if we want to make significant, quantum change, we need to work on our basic paradigms.”


  • “Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.”
  • “When the trust account is high, communication is easy, instant, and effective.”
  • “You have to decide what your highest priorities are and have the courage—pleasantly, smilingly, non-apologetically, to say ‘no’ to other things. And the way you do that is by having a bigger ‘yes’ burning inside. The enemy of the ‘best’ is often the ‘good.’

Visie en waarden

  • “All things are created twice. There’s a mental or first creation, and a physical or second creation to all things”
  •  “Begin each day with the blueprint of my deepest values firmly in mind then when challenges come, make decisions based on those values.”
  • “Everyone has values; even criminal gangs have values. Values govern people’s behavior but principles govern the consequences of those behaviors.”
  • “Frustration is a function of our expectations, and our expectations are often a reflection of the social mirror rather than our own values and priorities.”
  • “Peace of mind comes when your life is in harmony with true principles and values and in no other way.”
  • “People are working harder than ever, but because they lack clarity and vision, they aren’t getting very far. They, in essence, are pushing a rope … with all of their might.”

By Ingrid V.

Creatieve 1000-poot en freelance trainer met interesses als GTD, productiviteit, persoonlijke ontwikkeling, management, blogging, technologie,


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