I know we've all heard people say they wish they could do xyz--if only they had more time. Then they sit in front of the computer playing video games, or 'have' to watch the latest episode of 24--but they don't 'have time' for that dream that stands out of reach (authors hear this constantly from people who have just been wanting to write a book for their whole lives, but the same could be said of people who always wanted to learn how to cook, or play the piano, or put in a garden or any other worthy goal).
For most everyone, time is what they make of it--and I just received this fun email (sorry, I have no idea where it originated from, but if you do, I'd be more than happy to credit the writer), and thought I'd share it before I get back to working on my new manuscript:
The Mayonnaise Jar
When things in your life seem almost too much to handle,
When 24 hours in a day is not enough;
remember the mayonnaise jar and 2 cups of 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 start to fill it with golf balls.
He then asked the students if the jar was full.
They agreed that it was.
The professor 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 students again
if the jar was full. They 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,
children, health, friends, and favorite passions
Things that if everything else was lost
and only they remained, your life would still be full.
The pebbles are the things that matter like your job, house, and car.
The sand is everything else --
The small stuff.
'If you put the sand into the jar first,' he continued,
'there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls.
The same goes for 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 checkups.
Take your partner out to dinner.
There will always be time
to clean the house and fix the dripping tap.
'Take care of the golf balls first --
The things that really matter.
Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.'
One of the students raised her hand
and inquired what the coffee represented.
The professor smiled.
'I'm glad you asked'.
It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem,
there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend.'
I'm waiting anxiously to hear back on the submission for my third book in my current series and hope to have an answer in the next few weeks. Meanwhile, I have several other writing irons in the fire that I'm going to keep working on.
Also in my busy past week: several ambulance calls, bottling and drying two boxes of pears, signing books at the Authorpalooza at Barnes & Noble, a temple trip, and trying to squeeze by on not-quite-enough sleep. Current word count of my newest WIP--my first mystery/suspense book: 53,062.