Reviews

First Things First by Rebecca R. Merrill, Stephen R. Covey, A. Roger Merrill

fonteyoung's review

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reflective fast-paced

4.0

Good way to organize your goals and values

papidoc's review

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5.0

Another terrifically helpful book from the pen of Stephen Covey. I personally found especially useful the two-by-two matrix he discusses as a way to organize yourself. The four resulting quadrants include:

1. Important and Urgent
2. Important, Not Urgent
3. Urgent, Not Important
4. Not Urgent, Not Important

Simply put, most people spend far too much time in quadrants 3 & 4. We also spend too much time in quadrant 1, not that those issues are unimportant, but because we don't manage our priorities well. The goal is to gradually focus more and more of our time and energy in quadrant 2, thus reducing the amount of energy necessarily directed to quadrant 1.

Having been disappointed by too many time-management books in the past, which primarily purport to show one how to cram more into the limited amount of time we have, another epiphany for me from Covey's book was that the issue isn't time management, but rather priority management. That hit home, and caused me to make some changes that have led to a more satisfying life for me. I suspect this would be worthwhile reading for most people, but probably most especially, young adults.

mylonpruett's review

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5.0

Fundamental to putting first things first in our lives is leadership before management: “Am I doing the right things?” before “Am I doing things right?”

This book was amazing, its honestly been a while that covered the depth of content that this book did. I've read a few books lately on prioritization and this has to be one of the best subjects I've read on the topic. The concept of the book is simple, determine what should be first in your life, what you want to be first in your life and then prioritize it first. Obviously this is easier said then done or we would already be doing it. This book goes into how to do this, what it looks like, and detailed specifics on how to do it. To be clear this is not a quick fix solution, it will take time, determination, and commitment, but the solution proposed here is a game changer.

I will say it takes some time to really hit the "meat" of the book if you've read a few like this. In the beginning it sounds a lot like every other "prioritization" book but once you get a few chapters in it really starts separating itself from the rest of the pack. Its also going to be another book I recommend reading in physical form. There are several charts and "inserts" that don't translate very well to the digital format.

There is so much here that it would be impossible to summarize it all but I would absolutely recommend this book to everyone that I could get to read it. It has the potential to literally change your life.

pgck's review

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3.0

Some interesting points but repetitive and too enamored of its own buzzwords

shelby96gt's review

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1.0

I do not normally read self-help books and unfortunately, this book does not make me want to read more. I was very hopeful going into this book that I would get something new out of it and maybe some meaningful insight into my “first things.” However, like nearly all self-help/motivational/personal growth books, it said the same thing but pretended that its packaging was different and therefore the message was different. It is quite possible that the biggest issue I have is with the author as I talked about the book with my mother who happened to be reading another book by Steven Covey and was also finding it to be unenlightening. All the “new” ideas that they tried to impart on me were things that I have already tried or were already doing in my life.

The most positive thing I can say about this book is that it forced me to self-reflect more than I normally do. I am normally a very introspective person though, so this was not much more self-reflection than I normally do.

hadewygh's review

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informative inspiring slow-paced

4.0

Inspiring book about how to set priorities in line with the principles of your ‘true north’. The pace is rather slow so it’s sometimes hard to remember what all the different terms me that were explained in previous chapters. A book one should probably read more then once to fully comprehend it. 

bookworm_88's review against another edition

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informative inspiring reflective slow-paced

3.0

juliana_aldous's review

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5.0

Still one of the best books about how to spend your time.

andrewritchie's review

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medium-paced

3.75

cassius1356's review

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5.0

This book really helped me overcome my being lost with all the apparent urgent things coming up every day and put order in my head regarding what really matters. I highly recommend it to anybody who is feeling like being in a rut and wanting to get out of it.