Put In The Big Rocks First
The Author Steven Covey is one of my heroes.In the book “First Things First” he describes a story that one of his associates experienced on a seminar. In the middle of the lecture the presenter pulled out a wide-mouth jar and placed it on the table, aside to some fist-sized rocks.
After filling the jar to the top with rocks he asked, “Is the jar full?” People could see that no more rocks would fit, so they replied, “Yes!”
“Not so fast,” he cautioned. He then got some gravel from under the table and added it to the jar, filling the spaces between the rocks. Again, he asked, “Is the jar full?” This time the students replied “Probably not.” The presenter then reached a bucket of sand below the table, and dumped it on the jar, filling the spaces between the rocks and the gravel. Once again he asked “Is the jar full?” “No!”, the students shouted. Finally, he grabbed a pitcher of water and filled the jar completely, asking to the public what they could learn from that illustration.
One of the participants answered, “If you work at it, you can always fit more into your life.” “No,” said the presenter. “The point is, if you don’t put the big rocks in first. . . would you ever have gotten any of them in?”
This is a perfect lesson on priorities.Some of us need a real life illustration like that to keep on track. I for one am grateful for it. My big rock today? Paying the bills. What is your big rock?