Be Proactive is about taking responsibility for your life. Proactive people recognize that they are “response-able.” They don’t blame genetics, circumstances, conditions, or conditioning for their behavior. They know they choose their behavior. Reactive people, on the other hand, are often affected by their physical environment. They find external sources to blame for their behavior.
Between the stimulus and the response is your greatest power–you have the freedom to choose your response. One of the most important things you choose is what you say. Your language is a good indicator of how you see yourself. A proactive person uses proactive language–I can, I will, I prefer, etc. A reactive person uses reactive language–I can’t, I have to, if only. Reactive people believe they are not responsible for what they say and do–they have no choice.
Proactive people focus their efforts on their Circle of Influence. They work on the things they can do something about. Reactive people focus their efforts in the Circle of Concern–things over which they have little or no control. Gaining an awareness of the areas in which we expend our energies in is a giant step in becoming proactive.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
Habit #1: Be Proactive
Habit #2: Begin with the End in Mind
Habit #3: Put First Things First
Habit #4: Think Win-Win
Habit #5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
Habit #6: Synergize
Habit #7: Sharpen the Saw