Priorities In Your Life

I've seen this one before but Amy's forward to me contained a neat twist at the end! (June 19, 2001)

Here is something all students should understand.

A philosophy professor stood before his class and had some items in front of
him. When the class began, wordlessly he picked up a large empty mayonnaise jar
and proceeded to fill it with rocks, rocks about 2" in diameter. He then asked
the students if the jar was full?  They agreed that it was.

So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar.
He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles, of course, rolled into the open areas
between the rocks. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They
agreed it was.  The students laughed.

The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the
sand filled up everything else. 
"Now," said the professor, "I want you to recognise that this is your life. The
rocks are the important things - your family, your partner, your health, your
children - things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your
life would still be full.  The pebbles are the other things that matter like
your job, your house, your car. The sand is everything else, the small stuff. 
If you put the sand into the jar first, there is no room for the pebbles or the
rocks. The same goes for your life. If you spend all your time and energy on the
small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. 
Pay attention to the things that are
critical to your happiness. Play with your children. Take time to get medical
checkups. Take your partner out dancing. There will always be time to go to
work, clean the house, give a dinner party and fix the disposal. Take care of
the rocks first - the things that really matter.  Set your priorities. The rest
is just sand."

But then a student then took the jar which the other students and the professor
agreed was full, and proceeded to pour in a glass of beer. Of course the beer
filled the remaining spaces within the jar making the jar truly full.  The moral
of this tale is no matter how full your life is, there is always room for

Last Updated: 072001