Life in a Jar

Happy Friday! We made it to the long weekend and the official start of summer! I always like to take a few minutes to reflect back on the week.  I like to think about the things that I am proud of, the things I wish I had done better and the things that I want to work on in the coming week.  This week was a little out of my normal routine, my priorities seemed to shift a little.  That’s OK, it was a productive week.  Thursday I skipped my morning running to sleep for that extra hour but looking back on it, I wish I had gotten up and ran.  It’s my time and it’s like therapy.  I had a bit of a frustrating week at work but I’m taking steps to change that and take control of my frustrations but I want to better learn to deal with the things I can’t change.  The most prominent thought of the week that I’ve been carrying with my is thankfulness.

Michael and I always chat on and off during the day via gchat.  We check-in in the morning and say hi.  The other morning he told me that he was walking around his house that morning thinking about how thankful he is for his life and how lucky he is.  We proceeded to chat more about how blessed we are.  We are truly blessed, blessed with the best things in life.

We are blessed to have each other and relationship that is nothing but supportive.  Michael is one of my biggest fans and sometimes I think he’s being hard on me or challenging me too much, but in the end I know it’s to make me successful.  We have families that love us and are thrilled to spend time with us, share our lives with us and support us along the way.  We have home to live in, jobs to pay the bills and fund our hobbies, vacations and more, and we have safe cars to drive.  We have friends who love us, support us, make us laugh and are there for us.  We have our health and our families health. We have a lot of good in our lives.  Sure, there are plenty of things we’d like to change but at the end of the day we have the important things, the things that matter most to keep us happy.

It reminded me of this story I read called “Life in a Jar”.

When things in your life seem, almost too much to handle,
When 24 Hours in a day is not enough,
Remember the mayonnaise jar and 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class
and had some items in front of him.
When the class began, wordlessly,
He 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 a 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 – family,
children, health, Friends, and Favorite passions –
Things that 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, house, and 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 partner out to dinner.

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.

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.’

So today I leave you to think about the things that you are thankful for.  Consider whether or not you have the pebbles in your jar first or if they come last.  Think about the sand in your life, do you carry worry and stress around as a result of the sand?  Maybe this weekend you’ll take the time to go have that cup of coffee with a friend.

I hope everyone has a fantastic long weekend!  Spend some time with your golf balls, this is a great weekend to do that.  Memorial day is filled with cookouts and barbecues and family gatherings and most of all laughter! 

What are you thankful for? Have you heard this story before? Do you focus on your golf balls or the sand?  Do you make time for coffee with friends? Is your jar filled in the right order?


8 thoughts on “Life in a Jar

  1. Christine @ Love, Life, Surf says:

    I love this story! I haven’t heard it before and it puts things in such great perspective. I need to focus more on those bigger golf balls in my life. Definitely needed to read this today. It sounds like you and Michael have a great supportive relationship. Have a great long weekend!!


  2. Jess Sutera says:

    SUCH a beautiful post — I love, love, love the life in a jar story. I have been trying so hard to focus on really appreciating the big and little rocks in my days, weeks, months, and not “can’t waiting” or rushing life away. Life is fleeting as it is – as are the ones we love, they can be fleeting too. I cherish my loved ones ,especially my husband more and more by the day. LOVE that you and Michael have such a wonderful relationship, you two sound similar to us in how you support eachother, challenge eachother, appreciate eachother. So awesome!


    • liverunloveyoga says:

      Thanks! I agree with everything you’ve said. It does sound like we both have very similar relationships…I’ve actually thought that from the first time I read your blog! Thank you so much for all the blog love!


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