Family Time

Family Time

Rubber Balls & Big Stones

In our most recent podcast, we discuss how we can increase our family togetherness when we’re so busy. In the podcast, we refer to two different apologies. We’ve provided those here. As you read through them, think about what your rubber balls and small stones may be. Re-prioritize your family time accordingly.

Rubber Balls – Bryan Dyson – Georgia Tech Commencement Speech

“Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. You name them – work, family, health, friends and spirit – and you’re keeping all of these in the air. You will soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls – family, health, friends and spirit – are made of glass. If you drop one of these, they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for balance in your life.”

Big Stones – Dr. Stephen Covey – First Things First

As [a certain] man stood in front of [a] group of high-powered over-achievers he said, ‘Okay, time for a quiz.’ Then he pulled out a one-gallon, wide-mouthed mason jar and set it on a table in front of him. Then he produced about a dozen fist-sized rocks and carefully placed them, one at a time, into the jar.

When the jar was filled to the top and no more rocks would fit inside, he asked, ‘Is this jar full?’ Everyone in the class said, ‘Yes.’ Then he said, ‘Really?’ He reached under the table and pulled out a bucket of gravel. Then he dumped some gravel in and shook the jar causing pieces of gravel to work themselves down into the spaces between the big rocks.

Then he smiled and asked the group once more, ‘Is the jar full?’ By this time the class was onto him. ‘Probably not,’ one of them answered. ‘Good!’ he replied. And he reached under the table and brought out a bucket of sand. He started dumping the sand in and it went into all the spaces left between the rocks and the gravel. Once more he asked the question, ‘Is this jar full?’

‘No!’ the class shouted. Once again he said, ‘Good!’ Then he grabbed a pitcher of water and began to pour it in until the jar was filled to the brim. Then he looked up at the class and asked, ‘What is the point of this illustration?’

One eager beaver raised his hand and said, ‘The point is, no matter how full your schedule is, if you try really hard, you can always fit some more things into it!’

‘No,’ the speaker replied, ‘that’s not the point. The truth this illustration teaches us is: If you don’t put the big rocks in first, you’ll never get them in at all.'”


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