Priority – How you spend your energy and time – this often gives insight into both Purpose and Passion. By being intentional with your daily activities and interactions, you will be empowered to accomplish what is truly meaningful to you and seeing the results of this focused energy.
Rocks, Pebbles & Sand Analogy for Maximum Prioritization
You may have seen this on social media or YouTube
A philosophy professor once stood up before his class with a large empty mayonnaise jar. He filled the jar to the top with large rocks and asked his students if the jar was full.
The students said that yes, the jar was indeed full.
He then added small pebbles to the jar, and gave the jar a bit of a shake so the pebbles could disperse themselves among the larger rocks. Then he asked again, “Is the jar full now?”
The students agreed that the jar was still full.
The professor then poured sand into the jar to fill up any remaining empty space. The students then agreed that the jar was completely full.
The professor went on to explain that the jar represents everything that is in one's life
The rocks are equivalent to the most important projects and things you have going on, such as spending time with your family and maintaining proper health. This means that if the pebbles and the sand were lost, the jar would still be full and your life would still have meaning. (If you'd like to learn more about how to figure out what's important in your life, read this article on 137 life lessons.)
The pebbles represent the things in your life that matter, but that you could live without. The pebbles are certainly things that give your life meaning (such as your job, house, hobbies, and friendships), but they are not critical for you to have a meaningful life. These things often come and go, and are not permanent or essential to your overall well-being.
Finally, the sand represents the remaining filler things in your life, and material possessions. This could be small things such as watching television, browsing through your favorite social media site, or running errands. These things don't mean much to your life as a whole, and are likely only done to waste time or get small tasks accomplished.
Daily Intention Setting
This concept was a gamechanger for me. I was your typical person who would set New Years resolutions and quickly become off course by the end of January. When I went through my coaching certification program and learned that all goals were feelings, I embraced the concept of intention setting. I consider intentions to reflect how I wish to show up based on my values.
Before beginning a task or activity, ask yourself what you wish to embody or cultivate during your work.
You can set an intention for any activity, such as meditating, going to a meeting, having dinner with your family, or having a conversation with a coworker.
Intentions can include practicing more self-compassion, deep listening, gratitude, and cultivating supportive relationships.
• When setting your intention, try to clarify what is most needed in that moment.
• Try to mindfully carry this intention with you as you proceed, checking in periodically to re-align yourself if you forget.
• At the end of the day reflect on whether you remembered your intention(s) and how often you followed them.
• Look for specific instances and congratulate yourself for any times, however few or brief, that you embodied your intention and then congratulate yourself!
TAKING IN THE GOOD/GRATITUDE – this comes from Mindfulness.com – source of great exercises
Neuroscience shows that memory has a negative bias. It is much easier to remember the bad stuff that
has happened to us than the good. This leads to needless suffering and a generally pessimistic outlook.
Taking in the Good allows us to focus on positive experiences and to let go of negative ones. It is not
about putting a happy shiny face on things, nor is it about turning away from the hard things in life.
But it is about nourishing a solid well-being, contentment, and peace inside that is a rock, a refuge, a
home base you can always return to and come from.
The result of this is a gradual improvement in a general sense of wellbeing, as well as a reduction in the
painfulness of negative memories.
1. Turn positive facts into positive experiences. Actively look for good news, particularly the little stuff
of daily life that’s all around: the faces of children, a sense of your own tenacity, the smell of an orange,
a memory from a happy vacation, a minor success at work, and so on. Then, bring a mindful awareness
to it, opening up to it, letting it affect you. It’s like preparing a meal: rather than just looking at it, dig in
with a big spoon!
2. Savor the experience. It’s delicious! Make it last by keeping your attention on it for 5, 10, even 20
seconds. Try not to jump onto something else. Focus on the sensations and emotions of the experience.
Let the experience be big and strongly felt, filling your body. For example, allow the feeling of being
liked to bring warmth to your whole chest.
3. Pay particular attention to the rewarding aspects of the experience, like how fulfilling and cozy it
feels to get a big hug from a child.
4. Imagine or feel that the experience is sinking deeply into your mind and body, like warm sun on a T-shirt, water into a sponge, or a jewel placed in your heart. Keep relaxing your body and absorbing the
Healing. This is an option, extra step. Here you use positive experiences to soothe, balance, and even
replace negative ones. When a negative memory or feeling arises, allow your positive experience (that
you cultivated in the previous steps) arise at the same time. Hold these two experiences within yourself
at the same time.
When two things are held in mind at the same time, they begin connecting with each other. That’s one
reason why talking about hard things in a supportive relationship – with friends, or a teacher or
therapist – is often so healing: painful material gets infused with the comfort, encouragement, and
closeness you experience with the other person. Over time, this has a strong healing effect on negative