How do you manage your time and set priorities? It's a large topic about which much could be said. One speaker found a way to deliver his key message so that it left a lasting impression with his audience.
To make his point, the speaker pulled out a one gallon wide-mouthed mason jar and set it on the desk in front of him. Then he carefully placed about a dozen big rocks in the jar. When the jar was filled to the top, he asked, "Is the jar full?"
Everyone replied "Yes."
The speaker said "Really?" He then pulled out a bucket of gravel and dumped some into the jar. After he shook the jar, the gravel worked its way down into the spaces between the big rocks. The speaker asked the group again, "Is the jar full?"
This time everyone said "Probably not."
They watched as the speaker brought out a bucket of sand and began dumping it into the jar. The sand went down into all the spaces left between the rocks and the gravel.
This time when he asked if the jar was full, everyone said "No." The speaker then grabbed a pitcher of water and began to pour it in until the jar was filled to the brim.
At this point he set the jar down, looked out at his audience, and said "The point here is if you don't put the big rocks in first, you'll never get them in at all." He then went on to ask his audience to reflect on what the "big rocks" were in their lives or work.