Your Priorities Straight
You may be
familiar with this popular time management illustration but it is worth reading
again, at least once a year!
workshop, a time management expert stood in front of the group he was presenting
to and said, "Okay, time for a quiz."
He pulled out a one-gallon, wide mouthed mason jar and set it on a table in
front of him. Then he produced a dozen large rocks and carefully placed them,
one at a time, into the jar. When the jar was filled to the top and no more
rocks would fit inside, he asked, "Is this jar full?" Everyone in the
group answered, "Yes."
He replied, "Really?"
He reached under the table and pulled out a bucket of gravel. Then he proceeded
to pour the gravel into the jar. He shook the jar, causing the pieces of gravel
to work themselves down into the spaces between the rocks. He continued to do
this until no more gravel could fit. Then he asked once more, "Is the jar
By this time, the group was onto him. "Probably not," one of them
answered. "Good!" he replied.
He reached under the table, brought out a bucket of sand and started dumping the
sand in. It went into all the spaces left between the rocks and the gravel. Once
more, he asked the question, "Is this jar full?"
"No!" the group 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. He looked up at the group and asked, "All right, what
is the point of this illustration?" One business professional raised her
hand and said, "The point is, no matter how full your schedule is, if you
try really hard, you can always fit more things into it!"
"No," the speaker replied, "that's not the point. The point is
that if you don't put the big rocks in first, you'll never get them in at
What are the big rocks in your life? More time with your loved ones? Advancement
in your education? Business growth? Greater wealth? Something else that you've
always wanted to accomplish?
If you don't take the time to prioritize (put your major goals in first), then
all your time will be used up by less important things.
Make an appointment with yourself today to think about and reflect on this
story. Ask yourself the question: What are the major goals in my life or
business? Then, remember to put these major goals in first, or you'll never get
them in at all.
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© 2005 by Maria Gracia. All rights reserved.
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