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Legend has it that a Nobel laureate was asked by a group of high-flying executives how he manages to stay so productive; churning out paper after paper while teaching, doing research and speaking around the world.

The only thing you need to know about time management

The laureate said that all you need to know about time management can be taught in a two minute demonstration.

He picked up a glass jar and filled it with a couple of big rocks. Once the glass was full he added smaller rocks which started to fill the gaps between the larger ones.

After he filled the jar with the rocks, the grabbed some sand and poured it into the glass until there was no more room.

He ended his demonstration with pouring water into the jar until it was full to the brim.

The lesson is simple:

You have to start with the big rocks when planning your time before letting the smaller things fill up space.

Otherwise, you will never get everything into your jar.

Most of us focus on on the here and now. The things which are in front of us. The immediate and urgent — not the strategic.

Make a list of the 3–5 big rocks you need to tackle. Schedule time on your calendar every week to work on those. Let the small stuff flow around it.

How do you manage your time? How do you find this concept? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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