Rocks, Pebbles, Sand - Setting Priorities

Est. Reading: 1 minute

Setting priorities throughout our daily lives can feel much like that of an emergency room triage nurse - needing to ensure that the patient cases with the most serious needs are addressed first.

But what happens when we [think] we are working on the most important thing only to find that we are not?  An overwhelming feeling of wasted time, leading to the right tasks not getting completed, and your frustrations continue to mount. 

So how do we address this?

By thinking of the tasks/projects we have to do on a daily, weekly, monthly, yearly basis as the following:

  • Rocks (the most important)
  • Pebbles (important, but not critical)
  • Sand (everything else)

Now imagine that you have those three groups in front of you and you are needing to fit them into one jar (representing your day/month/year).  

How would you get them all in?

By filling jar in the order mentioned above - rocks first, pebbles second, and sand last.  

The image below shows what happens when that exercise is successfully executed (and when it is not).

jar of rocks pebbles and sand
Photo Credit: Google Image Search

So the next time you're met with a task or a project, ask yourself - is this a rock, a pebble, or sand? and plan accordingly.

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