Monday, June 11, 2012

Two Cups of Coffee

This story comes to us from another Blogging friend. This one from Downunder; Shannon Boh...

When things in your lives seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded 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 them 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–your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions–and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.
The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your 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 spouse out to dinner. Play another 18. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal. Take care of the golf balls first–the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.”
(My Frank Lloyd Wright designed coffee mugs)
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.”


MorningAJ said...

Oh Stew you've done it again. This is wonderful. Can I say that a part of the coffee represents reading your blog? I shall never be too busy to spare a few moments to hear your thoughts.

MorningAJ said...

PS. I love the mugs!

Stew said...

You are too kind.
I also have a matching canister to go with the mugs. I have used these in each house that I have staged for sale. Each one has sold within a week. That and they are from my favorite designer.

Ms Sparrow said...

That is a great life lesson! The coffee mugs designed by FLW are a surprise--but I guess they shouldn't be. Creative people will apply their creativity to everything around them!

That corgi :) said...

I like this; this story is one to print out and make sure to read every so often so one doesn't forget about the "priorities" of life and make sure they stay focused on what is really important and dear to them in their lives :)

may it be a great day for you!


Stew said...

Mr. Wright designed everything in the homes that he built. And I do mean everything.
I do love the mugs.

Stew said...

I've already printed it out myself.
When I first heard this story, I knew it had to be on the Brighter Side.

John Gray said...

that has to be one of the nicest metaphors for life I have heard in a long time
I may steal it sometime

Jim said...

It certainly makes life's lessons a little easier to understand and appreciate. Thanks Stew.

oneSAHDdude said...

Thanks to Shannon for that one. Good advice and something I've been trying very hard to keep in mind every day lately. I let myself get overwhelmed by all the small stuff for a while and it dragged me down; trying to dig out of that rut now day by day.

Now I need to make some coffee :-)

Stew said...

I'll be right over there, Rich.
We'll make sure that Shelly takes some time for the important things too.

Stew said...

No need to steal it, John. We are sharing it with the world.

Stew said...

Life has a way of distracting us and teaching us lessons, all at the same time.

Zaftig Diva said...

This is my life! I love this analogy and am thankful to be awake, alive, and aware of the space between the dashes.

Priorities shift everything.

Thank you for sharing!

oneSAHDdude said...

Thanks! I'll send you a link to my new website once I get a bit more of it together; it's been my new passion lately.

My parents are visiting in July; maybe that will give us a chance to get out with you guys for a couple hours!