Motivation Articles

A Story of Priorities and a Jar

Tips for Squeezing More into Your Life


If you put sand into the jar first, there is no room for the rocks or the pebbles. The same can be applied to your lives. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are truly important.

Pay attention to the things in life that are critical to your happiness and well-being. Take time to get medical check-ups, play with your children, go for a run, write your grandmother a letter. There will always be time to go to work, clean the house, or fix the disposal. Take care of the rocks first – things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just pebbles and sand.

Finding time in the day for fitness or participating in other athletic endeavors should be considered a “rock” for us all. Physiologically, working out releases endorphins in the body. These endorphins are natural pain-relievers produced by the body. This is what gives us the natural high experienced after a workout. This natural high has the potential to positively influence our daily interactions by making us feel better about ourselves. Make fitness a rock solid priority in your life and reap the benefits.

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About The Author

Julie Isphording Julie Isphording
Julie, a former Olympic marathon runner, is an author, radio host and fitness expert.

Member Comments

  • I always heard that you poured a beer in afterwards, because there's always time for a beer. - 8/21/2014 11:01:45 AM
  • If you add water, you prove that the jar wasn't full at all. - 1/21/2014 3:34:24 PM
    You can see the visual of this on - Its a great site for motivation ! - 11/27/2013 2:53:00 PM
  • I'm back! This article is very truthful! - 10/31/2013 8:12:49 PM
  • And the female professor took the jar and poured in a cup of coffee which found its way between the rocks and grain of sand. The moral of the story: there is always time for a cup of coffee with friends. - 12/10/2012 8:40:30 AM
  • I loved this article.It helps alot to put life's big and little things in the right place. I agree with sandraleet, in my life God goes first in the foundation. This was inspirating and I will use this in my life. Thanks - 9/9/2012 10:52:32 AM
  • I love this story. It puts everything in perspective. We should take care to show our family and friends how important they are. My motto is to show love and kindness, and give hugs often. - 7/22/2012 9:23:52 PM
  • What a great way to look at life - I'm saving this one :) - 7/22/2012 5:18:33 PM
  • No mention of the water/ ice tea/ beer that can still be poured in? Shame. - 7/22/2012 4:10:39 PM
  • This week has brought this story into sharp focus. The fact that my brother got a liver transplant is a ROCK! Most everything else this week was really just sand. - 7/22/2012 11:51:35 AM
  • First put God in then the rest. - 7/22/2012 11:00:51 AM
  • Thanks... It is something to think about. We are all guilty of a little sand... Ha! Time to clean it up.... Concentrate on the real important things in our lives!... - 7/22/2012 10:39:29 AM
  • I have heard this before and have drawn a jar with each of these three materials in it. The rocks are labeled as are the pebbles. This makes a great beginning activity for school. It makes a great art project and/or journal entry. These labeled things sometimes change. What a wonderful reminder for me today! THANKS!! - 4/28/2012 4:44:54 PM
  • Thanks for this article. My life is indeed full, but I donīt always make the time for the "rocks,"and sometimes feel guilty for deciding to take care of myself in the fitness and health categories. - 12/18/2011 8:06:06 AM
    I agree with LHORSEY. I think exercise is important, but definitely not a rock. I do try to exercise most days and it can easily take time away from time spent with my children. My children are older so they don't demand as much of my time, but when they were younger I would have definitely had to choose. - 10/18/2011 9:24:08 PM

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