Do you want to fit more of the important things into your life?
Have you ever seen the demonstration of how much can fit in a jar?
The jar represents our time, which is limited—we all have the same amount. Let’s say this represents your life:
When you look at the jar on the left, you can see that the sand, the smallest things (with little or no negative consequences) were put in first. Then the pebbles, which are a little bigger and have slightly bigger consequences, were put in next. Finally the big rocks were put on top, but there was not enough room for them! And they are the most important things!
What is amazing is that when you reverse the process, everything “magically” works! The big rocks go in, then the pebbles, and finally the sand pours into the empty spaces. The sand is the minutiae of life that is not going to make you or break you. If it doesn’t all fit, it doesn’t really matter. But if the big rocks don’t fit, your life will be seriously and negatively impacted.
The big rocks are the important things, such as High quality work, Relationships, Major projects, Community service, Big opportunities, Planning, Self-care and even Vacation. They are often the “Quadrant 2” as Stephen Covey described them: Important but not urgent. That makes them easy to put off. But they are the things that can either take your life to a higher level and prevent problems (“an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”), or, if neglected, turn into major problems or even disaster! The Big Rocks have a major impact either way, for good or bad.
So what’s the valuable lesson? We must put in the Big Rocks first! Decide on your most important things to do each day—things that will carry your business and life forward. Focus on one at a time until you get it finished or significantly moved ahead. Then focus on to the next, and so on.
You can then fit in some of the pebbles (things that may have slight consequences), and finally some of the sand, if you are not sacrificing something more important (such as sleep or relationships). You’ll enjoy everything more when you know you’ve taken care of the most important things! You will feel progress! Remember the Big Rocks first!