A professor stood before his philosophy class with some items in front of him.
When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.
He then asked the students, 'Is the jar full?'
They agreed that it was.
The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the spaces available between the golf balls.
He then asked the students again, 'Is the jar full?'
They agreed it was.
The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar.
Of course, the sand filled up all residual spaces
He asked once more, 'Is the jar full'. The students responded with a unanimous ‘yes.’
The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.
'Now,' said the professor, as the laughter subsided,
‘I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things - family, children, health, friends, and things you are passionate about. People and things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, Your life would still be full.'
He added, 'The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, house, and possessions. The sand is everything else –The small stuff.'
‘If you put the sand into the jar first,’ He continued, 'there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for 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.'
'So… Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness.
Spend quality time with your family, and friends. Play with your children. Take off time for yourself and look after yourself. Love, and care for, devote time and attention to your partner.'
'There will always be time to do all those numerous chores that crop up.'
‘Take care of the golf balls first – The things that really matter.
Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.’
One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented.
The professor smiled. ‘I’m glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem,there’s always room and time for a cup of tea or coffee with a friend.’