Grandfather and grandson walking in park

Not Enough Time

“Grandpa,” asks the child, “why do people always say they don’t have enough time?” The old man smiles: “Let’s go outside, I want to show you something.” He takes the boy by the hand and both walk out to the garden. In the toolshed he grabs two baskets and a bucket. “Now let’s find some rocks: a few big ones and lot of small ones. We’ll also need some sand.” Once their mission accomplished, the old man and the child sit in the grass. “I would like you to put the rocks and the sand in the bucket.” The boy pours the sand, then adds the small rocks and says: “but Grandpa, there isn’t enough space for the big rocks in this little bucket!” The elder replies: “Really? Why don’t you try again? This time put the big rocks first and the sand last.” The child empties the bucket and fills it up again. His eyes widen as the small rocks find their way in between the big ones, and they glisten as the sand slides in to fill all the remaining nooks and crannies. “The bucket is your life,” says the old man, “the big rocks are the things that bring meaning to it, the smaller ones are the things that give you joy.” The boy nods seriously. “The grains of sand are all the things you don’t really like to do but sometimes you have to do them anyway.” He pauses as the child observes at the bucket. “The only way to fit the big rocks is to put them first. Most people don’t realize this: they fill their life with sand so they have no space left for the rocks, the important things. That’s why they complain that they don’t have enough time.”

 

Cedric, 7/4/12

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This post is also available in: French

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