Yep, you guessed it! I’m reading self-help again. Stephen Covey’s The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People is one of those perennial books that I’ve read once before in the adult format, and at least once in my adolescence in the Highly Effective Teen version, written by Covey’s son, Sean. One really can’t argue with the logic behind Covey’s principle based tenets for living effectively – there’s just too much that screams inside of me when I’m reading, “well, duh!” – only I’m stuck in patterns and habits that are essentially diametrically opposed to those Covey proposes.

For example, instead of being proactive, as Covey recommends, I’m reactive. Instead of beginning with the end in mind, Honey, I don’t have time to think about the end, just get me through the beginning! I’ll think about the end when I get there.

And of course given my humorous world-view, I can’t read anything without considering the possibility of writing some sort of parody. So here goes, folks: these are my recommendations for leading the Ineffective Life I know we all strive for.

  1. First, foremost, and always, do nothing. This is the best way to be ineffective in every aspect of one’s life, from home-life to work-life, doing nothing is key to avoiding success.
  2. Succumb to your fears. That overwhelming fear you feel when picking up the telephone to call a client or account is totally justifiable. Your fears are legitimate. Live in them – nay, wallow in those fears.
  3. Consider only your own feelings, desires and needs. The world may not revolve around you (sadly, this is a cosmic impossibility), but your own world should! Looking out for number one is the most efficient means of getting what number one wants. Selfishness is next to Ineffectiveness!
  4. Party! The end is near, it says so in the Bible.
  5. Be rude. People are stupid, and they deserve it. And honestly, being nice would sort of fly in the face of Habit 3, so we don’t want that.
  6. Don’t be concerned with the future. Goals are generally unattainable anyway, so what’s the point? Now don’t start thinking that you have to “reach for the stars to get to the Moon” or some other such nonsense. What are you going to do with Moon, anyway?
  7. Forget everything you’ve ever been told about success. There’s no need to work when you’re looking to be ineffective, so there’s definitely no need to constantly return to Habit 1 over and over again. Coast on through life, my Ineffective Peeps!

Seriously, though, you should probably ignore me and read Covey – his habits are probably more useful than the ones I suggest, though you might have to admit, mine seem like more fun!

*Note to Dad: Laugh. I know you are about to cry, but stifle it and laugh instead. ‘Cause that was the intention of this post, not to say that I’m on the path toward an ineffective lifestyle! Love!