Covey’s Habit #3 is to Put First Things First. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs reminds us of this, if you’ve ever studied psychology. At the bottom of the pyramid is water, air, and food. If we don’t have these things, we can’t go higher up the hierarchy towards more refined, complex things that make us happy: meaningful relationships with others, for instance, or the ideal of self-actualization. Good food is foundational to health, positive mood, good relationships with nature, God, and others, and finding meaning and purpose in life.
Covey makes a quadrant, a square divided into four parts.
1. Urgent and
3. Urgent and
4. Non-Urgent and
Most people spend too much time in Square 1 (things urgent and important) and Square 3 (things urgent and unimportant). We have to plan and focus in order to spend more time on Square 2, things nonurgent and important. Eating right is Square 2 material!
Habit #7 is to Sharpen the Saw. A lumberjack is furiously sawing wood in the forest with a dull saw, and another man comes by and says, “You could do that a lot more efficiently if you’d sharpen your saw.” The lumberjack says, “I don’t have time–I have all this wood to saw!”
Isn’t this just like life? We’re killing ourselves by not renewing. Low-calorie, high-nutrition, whole plant foods like vegetables, fruits, and legumes regenerate every cell in your body so you have more energy and enthusiasm when you wake up to “saw” tomorrow.