Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The 90/10 Principle by Stephen Covey

I was sent an e-mail by my Mum this morning that contained this principle. Having read it, I can completely identify with it & thought that I'd share it with you.

Discover the 90/10 Principle.
It will change your life (at least the way you react to situations). What is this principle?

10% of life is made up of what happens to you. 90% of life is decided by
how you react. What does this mean?

We really have no control over 10% of what happens to us. We cannot stop
the car from breaking down. The plane will be late arriving, which throws
our whole schedule off. A driver may cut us off in traffic. We have no
control over this 10%. The other 90% is different. You determine the other

How? By your reaction.

You cannot control a red light., but you can control your reaction. Don't
let people fool you; YOU can control how you react. Let's use an example.

You are eating breakfast with your family. Your daughter knocks over a cup
of coffee onto your business shirt. You have no control over what just
happened. What happens next will be determined by how you react. You curse.

You harshly scold your daughter for knocking the cup over. She breaks down
in tears. After scolding her, you turn to your spouse and criticize her for
placing the cup too close to the edge of the table. A short verbal battle
follows. You storm upstairs and change your shirt. Back downstairs, you
find your daughter has been too busy crying to finish breakfast and get
ready for school. She misses the bus. Your spouse must leave immediately
for work.

You rush to the car and drive your daughter to school. Because you are
late, you drive 40 miles an hour in a 30 mph speed limit. After a 15-minute
delay and throwing $60 traffic fine away, you arrive at school. Your
daughter runs into the building without saying goodbye. After arriving at
the office 20 minutes late, you find you forgot your briefcase.Your day has
started terrible. As it continues, it seems to get worse and worse. You
look forward to coming home, When you arrive home, you find small wedge in
your relationship with your spouse and daughter.

Why? Because of how you reacted in the morning. Why did you have a bad day?

A) Did the coffee cause it?

B) Did your daughter cause it?

C) Did the policeman cause it?

D) Did you cause it?

The answer is " D".

You had no control over what happened with the coffee.How you reacted in
those 5 seconds is what caused your bad day. Here is what could have and
should have happened.

Coffee splashes over you. Your daughter is about to cry. You gently say,
"It's ok honey, you just need, to be more careful next time".Grabbing a
towel you rush upstairs. After grabbing a new shirt and your briefcase, you
come back down in time to look through the window and see your child
getting on the bus. She turns and waves. You arrive 5 minutes early and
cheerfully greet the staff. Your boss comments on how good the day you are

Notice the difference?

Two different scenarios. Both started the same. Both ended different.Why?

Because of how you REACTED.

You really do not have any control over 10% of what happens. The other

90% was determined by your reaction.

Here are some ways to apply the 90/10 principle.

If someone says something negative about you, don't be a sponge. Let the
attack roll off like water on glass. You don't have to let the negative
comment affect you! React properly and it will not ruin your day. A wrong
reaction could result in losing a friend, being fired, getting stressed out

How do you react if someone cuts you off in traffic? Do you lose your
temper? Pound on the steering wheel? A friend of mine had the steering
wheel fall off) Do you curse? Does your blood pressure skyrocket? Do you
try and bump them?

WHO CARES if you arrive ten seconds later at work? Why let the cars ruin
your drive? Remember the 90/10 principle, and do not worry about it.

You are told you lost your job. Why lose sleep and get irritated? It will
work out. Use your worrying energy and time into finding another job. The
plane is late; it is going to mangle your schedule for the day.Why take out
your frustration on the flight attendant? She has no control over what is
going on. Use your time to study, get to know the other passenger. Why get
stressed out? It will just make things worse.

Now you know the 90-10 principle. Apply it and you will be amazed at the
results. You will lose nothing if you try it. The 90-10 principle is
incredible. Very few know and apply this principle. The result? Millions of
people are suffering from undeserved stress, trials, problems and
heartache.We all must understand and apply the 90/10 principle. It CAN
change your life!!!

Anybody else care to join me?


Blogger Tracie H said...

Everyone should adapt 90/10 into their everyday life and the world would be a happier place:)

8:18 pm  
Blogger Kelly said...

wow that is so true xx

12:59 pm  
Blogger CarolineO said...

Just found this 90/10 on your blog and its so true, definitely something I'll try to adapt to my life from now on! Thank you!

3:17 pm  

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