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 up with rocks, rocks about 2" in diameter. He then asked the students if the jar was full? They all agreed that it was.
So the professor then picked up a jar 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. The students laughed.
The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar and the sand filled up everything else.
"Now," said the professor, "I want you to recognize that this is your life. The rocks are the important things - your family, your partner, your health, your children - anything that is so important to you that if it were lost, you would be nearly destroyed.
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 sand into the jar first, there's no room for the pebbles or the rocks. The same goes for your life. If you spend all of your time and energy on the small stuff, you won't have any 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 check ups. 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.
Set your priorities.
The rest is just sand.
By Steven Covey