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Monday, February 14, 2011

The Mayonnaise Jar and Coffee

"When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the coffee...."

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

The professors then picked up a box of pebbles and poured it into the jar.  He shook the jar lightly.  The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls.  He then asked the student again if the jar was full.  The agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar.  Of course, the sand filled up everything else.  He asked once more if the jar was full.  The students responded with an 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 - God, family, your parents, children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions that is things you cannot live without.  The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, house and things you like very much.  While sand is everything else... the small stuff."

"If you put the sand into the jar first, " he continued, "here is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls.  The same goes for our 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 check-ups.  Take your partner out to dinner.  Fulfill your needs..."
"Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter.  Set your priorities.  The rest is just sand."

One of the student raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented?.
The professor smiled and said "I'm glad u asked.  It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple cups of coffee with a friend".  :-)

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