When I graduated from high school, one of my best friends, Allan wrote something very inspirational in my yearbook which I never forgot. Thank you old friend.
I want you to pretend your life is a glass jar filled with rocks … Is the jar full? Most people would agree it is.
Now imagine you dump in a handful of small pebbles and shake it up, the pebbles roll in between the rocks … Now is it full? Most people would still tell you its full.
Now imagine you dump in a box of sand and shake it. Of course the sand will fill up the remaining space … Can you tell yourself its full yet?
The jar represents your life. The rocks are the important things relationships, experiences, happiness; the pebbles are other things that matter like possessions, income, accolades; the sand is everything else.
Like everyone, I have certainly been guilty of putting in the sand first, leaving no room for the pebbles or the rocks. If we spend all our time and energy on grains of sand we will never have room for the things that are really important to us.
Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Spend real time with people you love, engage with them, converse, explore who they are and what they bring to your life.
Do not give part-time people a full-time position in your life. Beware those who want part of or to be part of your rock if they deserve to be part of your sand.
Avoid routines and have adventures with someone important to you; that someone might even be yourself. Seek out every mystery of your mind in whatever corner it may be skulking.
Make fitness and health part of your rock. There will always be time and space for the sand.
Work toward your dreams and remember that happiness is the only moral purpose of your life. It is achieving happiness, not suffering or self-indulgence that is the proof that you have been loyal to your highest values.
Happy New Year. May you find inspiration in 2013 that sets the trajectory for the remainder of your life. Thank you Allan - your advice that is now over 12 years old stands as true today as it was then.
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