Aspirations to a higher grounde

My struggles to climb to a higher grounde. Weekly updated.

Its all about the Big Stones

A while back in school I saw this story posted on one of our notice boards. Made an instant impact on me. Paints a great picture about time as a limiting factor. 

” One day an expert in time management was speaking to a group of business students and, to drive home a point, used an illustration those students will never forget. 

As he stood in front of the group of high-powered overachievers, he said, “Okay, time for a quiz.” Then he pulled out a one-gallon wide-mouthed Mason jar and set it on the table in front of him.

Then he produced about a dozen fist-sized rocks and carefully placed them, one at a time, into the jar. What’s this got to do with an amazing time management tip? Well, when the jar was filled to the top and no more rocks would fit inside, he asked, “Is this jar full?”

Everyone in the class said, “Yes”. Then he said, “Really?” He reached under the table and pulled out a bucket of gravel. Then he dumped some gravel in and shook the jar, causing pieces of gravel to work themselves down into the space between the big rocks. Then he asked the group once more. “Is the jar full?”

By this time the class was on to him as he worked to demonstrate this time management tip. “Probably not,” one of them answered.

“Good!” he replied. He reached under the table and brought out a bucket of sand. He started dumping the sand in the jar, and it went into all of the spaces left between the rocks and the gravel. Once more he asked the question, “Is this jar full?” No! The class shouted. Once again he said, “Good.”

Then he grabbed a pitcher of water and began to pour it in until the jar was filled to the brim. Then he looked at the class and asked, “What is the point of this story?”

One eager beaver raised his hand and said, “The point is, no matter how full your schedule is, if you try really hard you can always fit some more things in it!”

“No,” the speaker replied, “That’s not the point. The truth this time management tip teaches us is: If you don’t put the big rocks in first, you’ll never get them in at all.”

Let’s dig deeper into this ultimate time management tip. What are the ‘big rocks’ in your life? Your children, your loved ones, your education, your dreams, a worthy cause, teaching or mentoring others, doing things that you love, time for yourself, your health, your significant other?

Remember to put these BIG ROCKS in first or you’ll never get them in at all. If you sweat the little stuff (the gravel, the sand) then you’ll fill your life with little things you worry about that don’t really matter, and you’ll never have the real quality time you need to spend on the big, important stuff (the big rocks).

So, tonight, or in the morning, when you are reflecting on this ultimate time management tip, ask yourself this question:

What are the ‘big rocks’ in my life? Then, put those in your jar first.

I’d say humans are forgetful creatures so hang a paper on your wall titled BIG STONES and write down the most important “rocks” and goals in your life that you must concentrate on for the next few years, edit the list as you go along and goals change. An amazing way to focus all your actions on achieving the important stuff. 


Filed under: big ideas

One Response

  1. Nanzy says:

    My big rocks are my bubs 🙂 I’d pick them any day. What’s yours?

    Another gr8 blog by the way, deep & thoughtful.
    Just like you. hehe.

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