I am lucky to have a top-notch, high-end business while still being able to take time off for things that are important to me.
Prioritizing is often challenging for people (myself included), which is why I was thrilled to find an analogy that motivational speaker Stephen Covey often uses: If you have a big jar and you wish to fill it with rocks, pebbles, and sand, how would you go about doing that? Most people would start by putting the rocks in first, then sprinkling pebbles into the empty spaces, and doing the same with the sand in turn.
The analogy is that the large rocks take up most of the space, just like family and friends (rightly) take up most of our time. The rocks need to be prioritized by being placed in the jar first or else they won’t fit; family and friends need to be prioritized by having fun with them.
The pebbles and sand are things like emails, exercise, meditation, a walk in the woods, volunteering — all of those extracurricular activities that make you so well rounded and fabulous.
I’ve been zooming out of my own life and trying to understand what my own large rocks are, and I decided one of them is travel. We’re living in an era when air travel is cheap, and the oceans are about to gobble up major cities due to global warming, so I had better prioritize seeing the world.
Fortunately, my business continues whether I am there or not — but I actually enjoy my work, so I don’t do it too often…except last Thursday was my granddaughter’s fifth birthday! I took the day off in order to have an afternoon at the American Girl doll store with her, which was something my daughter and I had planned since she was born. I have also watched the company’s fortunes rise because of rock solid marketing and white-glove customer service, and I enjoy experiencing success first hand. Our expectations were met, and we left full of anticipation for our next visit.
One of the reasons I work for myself is because I am independent, and it’s important for me to take time off to be with my big rocks.
What do you fill your jar with?